The future of music is in services, not products

U2’s Bono claims in an exclusive interview with Time that his band is working with Apple to develop a format for interactive, multimedia music wrapped in DRM. But the music industry’s future lies in curated, customized streaming services rather than sales of products.

Streaming music is booming. But will it ever be profitable?

Apple is reportedly in talks to acquire Beats Electronics in a deal that would surely have as much to do with Beats’ new streaming music service as its line of electronics devices. But whether even the best streaming music service can turn a profit is still far from clear.

Why Apple needs iTunes Radio

Halfway through this year, digital song sales are actually down 2.3 percent: 682.2 million in 2013, versus 698 million a year ago. Meanwhile, digital streams of music are up 24 percent.

How to stream Spotify to Apple TV and iOS devices

One thing that iTunes has over Spotify’s online music service is its wireless connectivity to the Apple TV. But it is actually possible to get the same kind of connectivity with Spotify, and use it from any room in your house. Here’s how.

Confirmed: Spotify US will launch Thursday

UPDATED. Spotify U.S. is now in T-minus territory. A spokesperson for Spotify has confirmed that the popular European on-demand music streaming service will be available stateside on Thursday morning. GigaOM reported last month that Spotify’s U.S. launch would occur in mid-July.

Today in Social

The weekend passed, and we’re still talking about digital music. That’s because Om broke the story on Facebook’s music strategy. Talking to developers, he’s teased out Facebook’s ideas for a music dashboard that could support Spotify as well as other streaming music services, and offer another social layer for sharing, recommending, and commerce. There’s very little margin left over on 99-cent singles sales already – let alone one with Facebook’s 30 percent Credits cut. But I could imagine a try-before-you-buy plan for subscription services. And this strategy would likely free up Facebook from having to do royalty deals with the labels and publishers. Meanwhile, I like Pandora’s mass-market radio approach. It builds on existing music listening and buying patterns rather than trying to change consumer behavior, though I concede Pandora faces a tough royalties vs. ad revenues business equation.

Rdio Taps Developers to Compete in Digital Music Arena

Rdio, the social music subscription service built by Skype founders Janus Friis and Niklas Zennstrom, is one of the later entrants to the digital music space. But it’s working hard to catch up by tapping developers to make its service widely available.

Do The Math: How Big Will Spotify’s Revenues Be In 2010?

Today, a music industry website revealed some startling financial about red-hot music service, Spotify. Using that and some other publicly available information, we have put together a revenue model that shows the company is having a spectacular 2010, at least from a revenue perspective.