One day, Pandora wants to serve billions of people worldwide. To make that happen, it has started to hire people who know a thing or two about international expansion.
If Apple can pay the record labels more than the law requires and still make a profit, why should the law continue to allow other web-radio services to pay less?
By taking an equity stake in the Vevo, Google would create a liquidity event that ultimately could help Universal divest its stake at a respectable valuation, while buying some goodwill for itself in the process.
Web radio is showing signs of becoming a platform feature, rather than a standalone business,
With the popularity of Spotify, Pandora and others, Apple probably wants to find a way to keep its customers from wandering outside its ecosystem just because it has no cloud-based music streaming service. Attitudes are changing about owning media, which Apple must recognize.