Apple eyes $5 per month for Beats Music, report says

That'd be a substantial cut. Right now, Beats Music streaming costs $10 per month, in line with most other streaming services.

Beats Music, now coming to you courtesy of Apple. Screenshot by CNET

Apple's Beats Music could be substantially cheaper, if Apple gets its way.

The iPhone maker is sounding out the music labels on the possibility of offering its Beats Music streaming service for $5 per month, Recode is reporting, citing people who claim to have knowledge of its plans. Beats Music is currently offered at $10 per month.

The $60-per-year figure is not something Apple is pulling out of the air, according to the report. Sources told Recode that $60 is the same amount that heavy iTunes users pay each year to download music from Apple's marketplace.

Apple closed its $3 billion Beats acquisition in August. The company made no indication at that time what it had planned for Beats Music, but the service is still operating. Recent reports have suggested that Apple could do everything from scrapping Beats Music entirely to simply modifying it. The latest report suggests that changes are coming to Beats Music, but they won't occur until next year, giving Apple ample time to negotiate with the labels.

Earlier this month, a report surfaced saying that Apple was in talks with record labels to discuss reducing the cost of fees paid to those companies to lower its price on Beats Music. Apple did not comment on the rumor, and at the time no indication was given of how much Apple would want to charge for the service.

At $10 per month, Beats Music is in line with the vast majority of streaming-music services in the wild. Companies like Rhapsody and Spotify both offer streaming plans at that rate and reflect a fee that record labels can live with. Record labels receive fees from the services when songs are played.

That Apple is considering dropping the price on Beats Music comes with news that Spotify is also effectively cutting the price on its own service. While current, individual customers will need to pay $10 per month for its Premium service, a new Family plan will feature 50 percent discounts for specific users. That is, if a person joins Premium for $10 per month, a family member will get the same service for $5 per month.

Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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