iTunes Radio to go live in September, says report

Apple has already cooked up deals with a handful of major advertisers for the launch of iTunes Radio next month, reports AdAge.

Lance Whitney Contributing Writer
Lance Whitney is a freelance technology writer and trainer and a former IT professional. He's written for Time, CNET, PCMag, and several other publications. He's the author of two tech books--one on Windows and another on LinkedIn.
Lance Whitney
iTunes Radio.
iTunes Radio. CNET

Apple's new iTunes Radio will launch next month with several advertisers paying for commercial spots, according to the folks at AdAge.

Citing information from "people familiar with the negotiations," AdAge said that Apple has already lined up advertising deals with McDonald's, Nissan, Pepsi, Procter & Gamble, and possibly one or two other companies. Advertisers will pay anywhere from millions to tens of millions of dollars to run ads within the music service over a 12-month period, according to AdAge.

The ads themselves will be interactive and take over the user's screen on both computers and mobile devices as well as on Apple TV. iTunes Radio listeners will have to grapple with an audio ad every 15 minutes and a video spot every hour, the sources added.

People can avoid the ads on iTunes Radio by subscribing to iTunes Match. The $24.99-a-year cloud-based service lets users access any music from their library not purchased through iTunes on any connected Apple device.

Apple already announced iTunes Radio in June at its Worldwide Developers Conference. Apple iTunes chief Eddy Cue said that the service would launch in the U.S. this fall and expand to other countries soon after that. Rather than offer searchable music on demand, iTunes Music will stream tunes from 200 different stations. Sound familiar? Yep, that means its major rival and challenge will be Pandora.