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Apple Music’s increased spatial audio royalties are taking money from independents

Smaller record labels say Apple Music has not added money to the royalty payout pool to fund its 10% incentive for spatial audio, and instead it is reducing how much it pays all but the biggest firms.

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Apple Music has a pot of money and it’s spending more with larger record labels

Apple Music recently told artists and record labels that it would pay them 10% greater royalties for music made in spatial audio. Counter-intuitively, the increase is not tied to how much spatial audio is listened to, but rather to what proportion of a label’s output is in this format.

So a label that can remaster everything it owns in spatial audio will see a considerably greater increase in revenues compared to one that can only remaster half its catalog.

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