Given the rise in streaming music services like Spotify, the traditional digital sales model is dying a slow death, and there’s no question that Apple’s iTunes has not only been a linchpin of the digital music world during the past decade, but still remains the most popular online retailer of songs and albums. The Cupertino’s iTunes Radio streamer hasn’t really hit the heights in its short lifespan, and recognizing that it may lose ground on the rest of the field if it doesn’t adapt to the current market, it’s looking probable that the newly-acquired Beats Music service may be integrated into iTunes.

Earlier on this year, Apple paid a cool $3 billion to purchase Beats Electronics, but while we tend to associate the Dr. Dre-founded company with the handsomely priced headphones and speakers, its fledgling streaming music is said to have been a major factor in Apple’s decision to cough up such a huge sum.

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Last year marked the very first time that iTunes sales had dropped, and with streaming services now seemingly a more favorable option among music fans, they’re here to stay. The dip in sales is expected to continue through this year, and if Apple doesn’t act quickly, the iconic iTunes Music service could eventually fall into the dreaded pool of fallen giants.

The Wall Street Journal has word from an inside source that Beats Music will be intertwined with iTunes at some point next year, with an announcement likely to occur in the early stages of 2015.

Beats has a couple of rather unique quirks to its streaming service, such as hand-picked playlists, and while Apple is yet to reach the point of desperation, Tim Cook and co. will definitely be pinning quite a bit of hope on the integrated service helping to boost the company’s credentials as a serious player in the streaming game.

The fact that the App Store, in particular, continues to thrive, alleviates quite a bit of pressure, but with Apple being more than aware that the digital climate can shift very quickly, those working on this project will surely be striving to complete it as a matter of priority.

Apple is also said to be in talks with record labels which will result in the drop of pricing for the Beats Music service. Furthermore, it’s also rumored that Apple might ditch the Beats Music brand altogether.

Thoughts?

(Source: WSJ)

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