Report: Apple Tinkering with New Streaming Music Service

Is Apple ready to punt Pandora in its own game?

According to a new report from the Wall Street Journal, Apple is in talks to license music for a custom-radio service that would closely resemble that of Pandora Media Inc.

The news comes straight from “people familiar with the matter.” The sources tell the WSJ that Apple wants to “expand its dominance in online music.”

Such services create virtual “stations” that play music similar to a song or artist of the user’s choosing, either on Web browsers or smartphone apps. Like traditional radio, they are typically free for users, but incorporate advertisements.

Apple’s service would naturally have great exclusive reach across its significant slate of devices, like the iPhone, iPad, and even Mac computers.

“Apple only recently initiated licensing negotiations with record labels for its putative service and, even if it does complete deals, it could be a matter of months before such a service might launch,” the sources admit.

Would you be excited to see an Apple-driven music streaming service? If so, please weigh in with a thought or comment below.