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Apple to Let iPhone Users to Tell Siri to Play Songs

The Cupertino, California-headquartered tech giant also alleged that Spotify was trying to squeeze the artists, musicians and songwriters, not just the App Store

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FILE - Apple's App Store app is seen in Baltimore, MD., March 19, 2018. VOA

Swedish music streaming service Spotify is reportedly in a truce with Apple to let iPhone users tell voice assistant Siri to play songs, playlists and albums.

According to a report in The Information on Wednesday, the talks come amid a growing anti-trust battle between the two companies.

Google’s Assistant and Amazon Alexa work with Spotify but Siri does not.

Swedish music streaming app Spotify now has 232 million monthly active users (MAUs) globally, a 29 per cent increase year-on-year (YoY), along with 108 million premium subscribers which is also 31 per cent (YoY) growth.

In comparison, Apple Music last reported 60 million paid subscribers in June.

Spotify and Apple are in legal tussle, with Cupertino-based tech iPhone maker saying that Spotify is not paying 30 per cent ‘Apple tax’ on its subscriptions via App Store as claimed but even less than 1 per cent of paid subscribers.

In March, Spotify filed an anti-trust complaint against Apple with the European Commission.

Apple’s Siri. Image source Wikimedia commons

The tug of war between Spotify and Apple has intensified, with the Swedish music streaming service calling Apple a “monopolist”.

The European Union (EU) is investigating Spotify’s allegations, accusing Apple of unfairly hindering its rivals and favouring Apple Music through its App Store policies.

In its complaint with the EU, Spotify said that Apple requires it and other digital services to pay a 30 per cent tax on purchases made through Apple’s payment system, including upgrading from a free to premium subscription.

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Apple replied, saying its revenue share is 30 per cent only for the first year of an annual subscription. It drops to 15 per cent in the years after.

“The only contribution that Apple requires is for digital goods and services that are purchased inside the app using our secure in-app purchase system,” Apple added.

The Cupertino, California-headquartered tech giant also alleged that Spotify was trying to squeeze the artists, musicians and songwriters, not just the App Store. (IANS)

Next Story

Apple, Spotify Podcasts Now Availabe on Amazon Echo Lineup

With this, the Echo line up from Amazon becomes with the first third-party clients to support the Apple Podcasts service without using AirPlay

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Amazon
It's also interesting that Apple is ceding some of its HomePod functionality to Amazon. Pixabay

Apple and Swedish streaming giant Spotify’s podcasts are now available on Amazon’s Echo line up of devices.

“Apple Podcasts can be set as the default podcast player from the Alexa app, too, so Amazon will default to checking Apple Podcasts first whenever a show is requested. Spotify also announced today that its users would be able to ask Alexa to play podcasts from its platform,” The Verge reported on Friday.

With this, the Echo line up from Amazon becomes with the first third-party clients to support the Apple Podcasts service without using AirPlay.

It’s also interesting that Apple is ceding some of its HomePod functionality to Amazon.

The HomePod offers syncing with Apple Podcasts, which was unique and potentially a selling point. Now that anyone can access Apple Podcasts from any Alexa device, the HomePod is less special, the report added.

Amazon
Apple and Swedish streaming giant Spotify’s podcasts are now available on Amazon’s Echo line up of devices. Wikimedia Commons

Notably, Spotify Premium users were earlier able to use Spotify Connect to stream to Echo.

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But now, the Swedish streaming giant says that both Free and Premium customers in the US will be able to ask Alexa for podcasts as well as set Spotify as their default player. (IANS)