Judging from our Friday Morning Report, an awful lot of folks must be choosing the 5.5-inch iPhone 6 Plus over the smaller 4.7-inch iPhone 6, at least according to shipments leaving manufacturer Foxconn lately. We've also got the scoop on potentially cheaper Beats Music subscriptions, plus details on why Leonardo DiCaprio won't be playing Steve Jobs after all. Kick off the weekend on a good note by reading on!
Apple Lobbies Labels for Cheaper Beats Music Subscriptions
Is $10 per month too much to pay for an unlimited buffet of streaming music? According to Re/code, Apple seems to thinks so, and is reportedly in early discussions with major music labels to reduce the monthly fee users pay for Beats Music. The price cut is reportedly just one of the ways Apple hopes to revamp Beats Music next year, following rumors last month that Cupertino may shutter the service entirely. (Apple denied that was the case.)
Apple may have an uphill struggle ahead: By all accounts, sales of downloaded music have waned, with streaming services such as Spotify, Rdio, and Beats Music left to fill the gap — although others seem to believe the rise of such offerings could be responsible for the fall of purchased downloads in the first place.
Would a cheaper Beats Music subscription equate to more paying customers and happier music labels? Time will tell, but the report notes as few as 25 percent of Spotify customers actually pay for a $9.99 per month Premium subscription, with the remainder freeloading off the service's free offerings.
iPhone 6 Plus Could Account for 60 Percent of Shipments
DigiTimes today reported that the iPhone 6 Plus may be a lot more popular than everyone thinks, with "industry sources" claiming the 5.5-inch handset now accounts for 60 percent of total shipments from the iPhone 6 category. That breakdown is based upon recent shipments from Foxconn Electronics, the manufacturer exclusively tasked with the assembling the larger of the two smartphones.
According to sources, higher-than-expected sales of the iPhone 6 Plus could wind up taking a bite out of Apple's iPad mini sales, presumably for consumers who figure such a large handset is capable of serving both tasks.
Leonardo DiCaprio Bows Out of Steve Jobs Biopic
The Hollywood Reporter nabbed an exclusive Thursday with word that actor Leonardo DiCaprio will not be playing Steve Jobs in the upcoming biopic based on Walter Isaacson's official biography of the Apple co-founder. The actor apparently departed the feature film all on his own, and plans to "take a lengthy break from acting" after the completion of his latest endeavor, The Revenant.
The project, adapted by The Social Network screenwriter Aaron Sorkin and directed by Danny Boyle, is now in search of a new lead to portray the charismatic CEO, with Sony apparently considering a diverse bunch including Christian Bale, Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, and Bradley Cooper.