Lefsetz panning Apple’s new service

I don’t have a link yet, that will come out in a few days. But the best summary of speculation on Apple’s new service:

If Apple were all-powerful, iTunes Radio would have killed Pandora.

But it did not.

What was the name of Amazon’s Twitter-killer? Or their last music service? Apple is and was the king of MP3. But that’s like being the Emperor of the Austro-Hungarian empire; interesting as a historical footnote but not exactly relevant anymore. Apple does a lot right, hard to argue with that. But somehow their excellence in hardware and iOS software has not translated into decent music services. Maybe they just don’t spend the time or money on design? Looking at their podcast app that would seem to be the case.

But they bought Beats which was a lovely service in many ways. A touch over-priced (needed to be $10, was $15 just like Zune when it launched) and not *nearly* enough curation. And that is what Spotify is getting right. They appear to be focused on two things:

  1. Give people the hits: getting the Top 50 tracks of <fill in your genre> makes you part of the in crowd.
  2. More playlists: yes, I like Americana. Me and my 1552 buddies apparently agree that it’s a great playlist. You won’t like it, but that’s okay, they will build more.

So what will Apple announce? No idea, I don’t follow this space much anymore but I do read Lefsetz. I assume Spotify is worried, they have to be with Apple’s deep pockets (yes, they could just give it all away for 12 months). But what if the service is like iTunes Ping (had to Google that)… again? Maybe Apple should just give Spotify a gajillion dollars and make it all better.

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