The relationship between Apple and Spotify is not good, and Apple Music HiFi could be Cupertino’s way of hitting back to the Swedish company. And it is that we remember that the way of the cross that Apple faces in the European Union for alleged monopoly position in relation to the App Store and Apple Music has its origin in the complaint made by Spotify in 2019, and that since then it has had the regulators Europeans investigating the situation.
We must also remember that Spotify announced a few months ago its future high fidelity music service, Spotify HiFi. It is known that the company is not in too much of a hurry from when it makes an announcement until what is presented in it arrives, effectively, to users. To this day, we do not know anything new, with respect to what they already told us in February of last year, and it was that the service would reach some countries at some point during the year. We assume that with some songs and with some prices, but this is just a guess … yes, so much information is overwhelming.
Be that as it may, with such a premature announcement (since we still have no news) Spotify could have made a major strategic mistake, and Apple Music HiFi could be a direct consequence of it. And it is that, as we can read on Hits Daily Double, those of Cupertino could be preparing their own music service in high fidelity, with which they would compete not only with Spotify, but also with Amazon Music HD. with Deezer HiFi and with the elite Tidal, who also offer this type of service.
And is that the key to Apple Music HiFi would be in the price. While the prices of monthly subscriptions range between 14.99 euros for Amazon’s service and 19.99 euros for Tidal, Apple could be considering that the subscription to Apple Music HiFi does not imply a price increase over that of its standard service. 9.99 euros for the individual subscription, 14.99 for the family one, which would maintain access to the current catalog, and would add to it the offer in high fidelity.
A blow like this, and precisely when Spotify has begun to raise its rates in various markets, and added to the competition that both companies have established in relation to podcasts (with Spotify avoiding paid subscriptions to them through the App Store), it would not be funny in the Spotify offices, even more so if Apple is agile enough to accelerate the arrival of Apple Music HiFi, so see the light before Spotify HiFi does.
Additionally, and if it manages to come up with a sufficiently attractive catalog, Apple Music HiFi can have a very interesting effect on consumers, and that is to wonder why they should pay more for an increase in the quality of music. It is true, of course, that offering a streaming HiFi service requires larger data centers and greater bandwidth, in addition to renegotiating with record companies (which I imagine must be quite a pain), but if Apple manages to do it while maintaining the price and, of course, without resorting to dumping (something regulators should pay special attention to), global market perception may change for many users.
At the moment Apple Music HiFi is just a rumor, but the truth is that it fits quite well both in Apple’s plans and in its current relationship with Spotify. So much so that we can even speculate with its presentation at the next WWDC 2021, perhaps hand in hand with news in its catalog of headphones. Headphones, of course, capable of playing music in high fidelity.