By Binu Paul email: firstname.lastname@example.org | Feb 05, 2013 08:05 AM EST
The long-heard rumor of a possible music streaming service for iTunes has surfaced once again with the discovery of 'radio button' files in the iOS 6.1 jailbroken iPads.
An Apple's own music streaming service to rival Spotify and Pandora has been speculated for a long time; however, Apple never spilled a word on it. Now the folks at 9to5 Mac have identified several new "Radio Buy" buttons on the newly jailbroken iPads which are marked with an icon similar to the radio logo that used to be in iTunes for Mac. Interestingly, the radio buttons have appeared only on jailbroken iPads, not iPhones.
The curious finding has inevitably ignited the most probable assumption that Apple would be mulling an iTunes-like traditional streaming radio to the iPad. The word buy in the filenames further boosted the idea of Apple coming up with a streaming service to compete with the above-mentioned similar services given the fact that iPad music app currently does not have the radio functionality.
Apple has reportedly held a series of talks with record labels about launching a service that would compete with Pandora, The New York Times reported back in September last year. "Apple's service would probably take the form of a preinstalled app on devices like iPhones and iPads and might be able to connect to users' iTunes accounts to judge their tastes," the report said.
In Oct. 2012, a Bloomberg report went to the extent of confirming the rumors and claimed that Apple's negotiations have come to a positive result where users will be able to purchase customized playlists when it launches the service in the first quarter of 2013.
According to the report, executives from Universal Music Group, Warner Music Group Corp, and Sony Corp's music division discussed the possibilities of setting up an internet radio service with Apple at its Cupertino headquarters.
"Discussions are centered in part around how to share ad revenue and a deal could be reached by mid-November, with Apple starting service in the first three months of 2013," the report said citing unnamed sources.