U2 Album Giveaway: What's Apple's Angle? - InformationWeek

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U2 Album Giveaway: What's Apple's Angle?
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Shane M. O'Neill
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Shane M. O'Neill,
User Rank: Author
9/10/2014 | 6:55:09 PM
Re: It's about ApplePay
Good point @SFTechReader. Buying the rights to U2's album was a ploy to get a quick rush of credit cards into iTunes. It doesn't matter that U2 isn't cool anymore; what they are is extremely popular. That's why it was worth the investment for Apple. Just for sheer numbers, U2 is the perfect band for a ploy like this.

But everything still rests on quality. The whole gimmick backfires if the album is lame. No one has the patience for another mediocre U2 album and if the album leaves people cold word will get around fast. We shall see. I've only listened to a few songs, and none have fired me up. I need to give it a full listen. But if it's anything like their last hot mess of an album (2009's No Line On The Horizon), Apple definitely won't find what it's looking for in this partnership (I couldn't resist).
SFTechReader
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SFTechReader,
User Rank: Apprentice
9/10/2014 | 6:38:35 PM
Re: It's about ApplePay
I have never used mobile payments before but I could certainly see myself using ApplePay. Apple already has my credit card info and I like that they won't track my purchases. Also, I like being able to buy stuff online through ApplePay, without having to give my credit card info to little online stores with poor security. I think they packaged everything for ApplePay smartly and it will actually take off. Also, it is much safer than the other mobile payment solutions on the market right now since they won't even keep my credit card numbers on my iPhone and they will scan my fingerprint through TouchID. I trust Apple more than Google since they aren't trying to gather all possible data about me like Google does.
Susan_Nunziata
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Susan_Nunziata,
User Rank: Strategist
9/10/2014 | 4:56:55 PM
Re: It's about ApplePay
@SFTechReader: You've nailed it. music has been a loss leader for Apple from the very beginning, makes perfect sense that they would use the U2 giveaway to pave the way for ApplePay.

Do you see yourself using ApplePay?
David Wagner
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David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
9/10/2014 | 4:43:57 PM
Re: It's about ApplePay
@SFTechReader- That's a very astute observation. I was bugged by having to give them my credit card info for a free album. I almost stopped because they haven't done a great job protecting people's private stuff lately. But, you know, U2. 

Anyway, that is certainly part of the equation and one I had not considered. Thanks.
SFTechReader
IW Pick
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SFTechReader,
User Rank: Apprentice
9/10/2014 | 3:28:21 PM
It's about ApplePay
I believe Apple is doing this to boost the number of credit cards they have on file before they launch ApplePay. Notice that the free album is only available through the first week in October, and ApplePay will launch the second week in October. Apple is trying to get anyone who doesn't have an iTunes account to sign up now to get the free U2 album. To sign up for iTunes, you have to give a valid credit card number. So Apple is simply trying to get even more people signed up to iTunes so that they will be ready to start using ApplePay without having to enter credit card information later. It will be easier to get people to use ApplePay is they can use it without having to enter credit card info at the cash register. That's my take.

 

 
David Wagner
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David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
9/10/2014 | 1:14:04 PM
Re: Same old
@whoopty- Not only the same tactics but the same playbook. I think the closed ecosystem is still working for them from a profit perspective. But Apple must realize that the hot bar in town can't stay the hot bar forever. People leave to find the new one. So what is surprising to me about this one is they seem to be content to just ride it out trying the same stuff.
David Wagner
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50%
David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
9/10/2014 | 1:10:25 PM
Re: Apple jumps the shark
@Doug- Now see, if Apple really made a time machine, I'd be an Apple customer again. :)

Seriously, I think you are right that it is an attmept to be cool again. But can't they see that cool changes? I mean, they bought Beatz, presumably because they see cool there. They've got Dre and Jay-Z to tell them what is cool now. 

As a serious U2 fan, if the best Apple can do to figure out what is cool is to go back a decade, they're in real trouble.
Whoopty
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Whoopty,
User Rank: Ninja
9/10/2014 | 11:37:23 AM
Same old
While I don't necessarily think Apple's move is a bad plan, it smells of typical old tactics of circling the wagons, working for the close ecosystem which is proving increasingly less viable as the more open mediums take the lead in the smartphone, tablet and many other tech markets. 

It's probably an attempt to draw people back to itunes, as well as get people to think about using Apple hardware around the time of a new product launch. "Oh I don't have an iPhone any more, maybe I'll get the new one and download a free album."

Perhaps not, but Apple's traditional tactic isn't to innovate, so pushing hard for a download platform isn't too surprising. 
Doug Henschen
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Doug Henschen,
User Rank: Moderator
9/10/2014 | 11:16:49 AM
Apple jumps the shark
Apple's angle is a desperate attempt to say, "Hey, we're still cool." And maybe U2 needs to turn the "we're still here" crank, too. Cool-in-the-1990's-and-2000's birds of a feather flock together. Mind you this is coming from a guy who owns two iPads, three iPods, an iMac, a Macbook and a Time Machine.   


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