Apple pleads for more iTunes exclusives as streaming platforms hit digital sales

Give us more exclusives,' Apple reportedly tells labels as iTunes sales slump
Beyoncé's secret album smashed iTunes sales records

Amid slowing iTunes music sales, Apple is reportedly on the hunt for more exclusive content as it seeks to counter the march of the free streaming service.

A Billboard report claims the company is putting pressure on record label executives in order to secure more deals, such as the Beyoncé visual album it got first dibs on earlier this year.

That self-titled album, which featured 14 songs and 17 videos and was only available to buy in full, debuted on iTunes a week before it arrived on streaming services and YouTube.

The result was an iTunes-record 800,000 sales in the first three days and over one million in the first week, before it became available from alternate sources.

Be more like B

Now Billboard claims Apple iTunes director Robert Kondrk engaged in 'tense talks' with record label executives during Grammys week with a mission to secure more exclusive sales windows.

Interestingly, the report claims, Kondrik also pitched that download stores other than iTunes could enjoy the same window of exclusivity, providing streaming services like Spotify and YouTube were excluded.

"The iTunes theory was that because of the easy availability to access albums on YouTube it has punctured sales globally for track and albums," a major label executive told Billboard.

Apple's move comes with digital music sales falling 5.7 per cent in 2013 as users flock to freely available streaming services.

Via AppleInsider

Chris Smith

A technology journalist, writer and videographer of many magazines and websites including T3, Gadget Magazine and He specializes in applications for smartphones, tablets and handheld devices, with bylines also at The Guardian, WIRED, Trusted Reviews and Wareable. Chris is also the podcast host for The Liverpool Way. As well as tech and football, Chris is a pop-punk fan and enjoys the art of wrasslin'.