Apple forced to drop iTunes prices in UK

British customers of iTunes will soon be charged up to 10 per cent less for their downloads, after pressure by the European Commission forced Apple into a change of policy.In what represents a significant change to the downloading site’s policies in the UK, Apple announced this morning it was lowering its British prices within six months to see songs and albums brought into line with what customers in the rest of the European Union pay.This would see UK customers paying 74p instead of 79p per song, matching the EU’s current price of €0.99, and an average of £7.48 instead of £7.99 per album, equalling the EU’s €9.99 price. Settles Score With EU, Trims UK iTunes Pricing
Many in the music industry have been eager to see Apple’s vise grip on digital music weakened to lessen its power to set pricing — with many labels wanting music to be priced higher. “Apple’s desire to distance themselves from blame in this case suggests they respect that the EU could have made life difficult for them,” said JupiterResearch analyst Mark Mulligan.Apple has reached a deal that will have it equalize prices on the European version of its iTunes Music Store and end a European Union probe into the legality of the original pricing policy.As a result of the deal, iTunes users in the United Kingdom will see slightly lower prices for song downloads.UK customers had been paying slightly more for music than their counterparts in other parts of Europe, prompting a UK consumer group to file a complaint with the European Commission, the regulatory arm of the EU. Currently, a song on the UK iTunes costs the equivalent of US$1.56 while those sold in the so-called euro zone cost $1.46. lowers UK prices but might cut catalogue
Apple will lower its prices for music downloads in the UK following pressure from consumer lobby group Which? to the European Commission. The Commission has welcomed the move, but Apple has warned it could lead to cuts in its UK catalogue. Flattens Fees For Europe
Apple’s compliance with the European Union over the pricing of iTunes downloads in the EU just goes to show that its journey from computers to music retail has been anything but smooth on the continent. The company has avoided getting fined 10% of its worldwide annual sales for not allowing customers in certain parts of the European Union to buy songs from other member states, an issue at the heart of the region’s mandate as a single economy.Apple said Wednesday that “within six months,” it would lower the prices it charges for music on its U.K. iTunes store to match the already standardized pricing across the Eurozone, where songs costs €0.99 ($1.45) to download. downloads to become cheaper [Reuters]
British music fans will pay less for downloads from Apple’s online iTunes store after Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs reached a deal with the European Commission. to Cut the Prices of iTunes in Britain
Apple said on Wednesday that it had agreed to cut the prices on its iTunes digital music store in Britain to align them with those on the Continent, settling an antitrust case brought by European regulators.The European Commission accused Apple last spring of unfairly charging British consumers more than their counterparts in the euro zone for tracks from iTunes, the dominant online music vendor. British consumers typically pay 79 pence, or $1.55, a song while iTunes stores in the euro zone charge €0.99, or $1.46. Reaches ITunes Deal With Apple [AP]
Apple Inc. will scrap its iTunes pricing policies across Europe and charge consumers in Britain and the rest of Europe the same for music downloads, the company and the European Union said Wednesday.

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