Following a conclusion to the EU investigation Apple has announced that it will be standardizing the price of iTunes Music Store downloads across all European countries, so that finally UK customers won’t have to pay more than their continental European counterparts. This issue has seen the labels and Apple blame each other and now Apple have publicly stated that they have had to pay more to certain labels for music in the UK than they have for the same music in continental Europe. Which of course means that for those they didn’t have to pay more for Apple was making a larger profit.
But whatever the rights and wrongs it’s good news that the anomalous situation has been rectified, even if some inconsistencies remain in the physical space.
The strength of Apple’s statement is interesting
“Apple will reconsider its continuing relationship in the UK with any record label that does not lower its wholesale prices in the UK to the pan-European level within six months.”
It hints at three things:
• Apple’s desire to distance themselves from blame in this case
• The confidence that Apple derives from its dominant market position
• Cooler relationships with labels as the they try to weaken Apple’s position