Feeds

Apple cuts UK iTunes prices

Heads off EC investigation

Intelligent flash storage arrays

The European Commission has ended its antitrust investigation into Apple after the computing giant agreed to cut the price UK consumers pay to download music for their iPods.

Apple said it would cut UK prices to bring them into line with the rest of Europe. But it warned record labels:

Apple currently must pay some record labels more to distribute their music in the UK than it pays them to distribute the same music elsewhere in Europe. 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.

Consumers pay the same price in Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Finland, France, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Sweden, Switzerland and Spain. European consumers, identified by the address on their credit card, pay 99 Euro cents while UK users pay 79 pence.

A spokesman for Apple could not tell the Reg what level prices would be set at.

The European Commission said it began investigations after a formal complaint from UK consumer group Which?. The Commission said its probe found there were no agreements between Apple and major record labels on how iTunes is run in Europe, so it is ending its investigation.

Competition commissioner 'Steely' Neelie Kroes said: "The Commission is very much in favour of solutions which allow consumers to benefit from a truly Single Market for music downloads."

Which? welcomed the decision and said it hoped it would set a trend for other companies to end "Rip-off Britain" pricing. Which? said:

We complained about Apple’s price discrimination back in 2004 - so we’re glad they’ve finally agreed to give British music lovers a fair deal.

The fact they’ll soon be able to download tracks for the same price as European customers will be music to the ears of UK iTunes customers. We hope other internet companies – including online music companies - will follow Apple’s lead and match UK prices to prices in continental Europe.

The pressure group said it would like Apple to allow people to download music from whichever iTunes store they choose.

Apple's statement is here, and the Commission's is here. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
Lords take revenge on REVENGE PORN publishers
Jilted Johns and Jennies with busy fingers face two years inside
Yes, yes, Steve Jobs. Look what I'VE done for you lately – Tim Cook
New iPhone biz baron points to Apple's (his) greatest successes
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Sysadmin with EBOLA? Gartner's issued advice to debug your biz
Start hoarding cleaning supplies, analyst firm says, and assume your team will scatter
Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not
Edward who? GCHQ boss dodges Snowden topic during last speech
UK spies would rather 'walk' than do 'mass surveillance'
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.