Tesla looks to create an Apple Music rival

“Put this one in the ‘You can do that, but why would you want to do that?’ file: Tesla is talking to the music industry about creating its own streaming music service,” Peter Kafka and Johana Bhuiyan report for Recode.

“Music industry sources say the carmaker has had talks with all of the major labels about licensing a proprietary music service that would come bundled with its cars, which already come equipped with a high-tech dashboard and internet connectivity,” Kafka and Bhuiyan report. “Why doesn’t Tesla simply integrate existing services, like Spotify or Apple Music, into all of its cars from the start — especially since Tesla already does a deal with Spotify for Teslas sold outside the U.S.?”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Sounds extremely superfluous.

21 Comments

    1. The Model 3 has problems? That’s not possible. The proof is Tesla’s share price continues to rise nonstop. Most of the analysts claim that every day there are more and more people pre-ordering Teslas. So many, in fact, the plant is going to run 24/7. Ford is done, GM is done and now so is BMW. Tesla’s value is simply going through the roof. It’s being said that Tesla is going to put nearly every other auto manufacturer out of business. It will be wonderful to see everyone driving Tesla electric cars.

      If Elon Musk tells the news media that he’s going to challenge Apple Music then Apple is screwed. Apple’s share price will immediately fall and Tesla’s share price will rise even higher. Wall Street believes that Tesla will pass Apple in value in just a few more years. The way Tesla’s value is climbing and Apple’s value is going nowhere, one could imagine it’s almost possible. The greedy big investors are crazy about Tesla and Musk. They’re not so happy with Apple and Cook.

      Musk can do no wrong, so Apple Music is in big trouble.

      /s

      1. I presume this is a poor attempt at satire, otherwise someone had better call out the guys in white coats with leather straps aplenty because a whole new level of delusion has just been discovered here… and by past experience it might just be catching.

  1. While they may be having talks, I seriously doubt they’re going to launch anything. The numbers are far too small and there’s very little benefit to their users even if Tesla provided the service for free.

    Either “Tesla Music” would be exclusive to their cars, in which case it would suck not being able to use the same service in your car as you do on your phone and other devices, or Tesla would have to develop apps across a plethora of platforms. They’d struggle just to keep up with this let alone dealing with exclusives and other bundling from the competition.

    Tesla should be focusing on CarPlay (and others), and then consider doing deals where they bundle Apple Music subscriptions (and others).

    1. They just have to have Apps for Android, iOS and Alexa to cover their target market and make Tesla Music accessible everywhere. I think it’s a move so that Carplay and Android Auto will have less ‘advantages’ to offer for inclusion in Tesla vehicles.

      1. That’s already quite an undertaking to do properly, but they’d also need Mac, Windows, Web, Sonos, and really a bunch of others Playstation, Xbox, Roku, and a bunch of AV receivers… Apple gets away with being relatively less cross-platform because they have hundreds of millions of people well entrenched in their ecosystem, but Spotify if you’ll note, has to be everywhere as do other much smaller competitors.

        “I think it’s a move so that Carplay and Android Auto will have less ‘advantages’ to offer for inclusion in Tesla vehicles.”

        That makes no sense whatsoever. Why not just offer CarPlay and Android Auto?

        1. Tesla doesn’t need to do all platforms. I think they’ll settle for mobile platforms since the ‘hub’ use is the car.

          Probably the same reason some Auto manufactures are still reluctant to use CarPlay or Android Auto. Auto makers may want to keep customer data to itself.

          1. “Tesla doesn’t need to do all platforms. I think they’ll settle for mobile platforms since the ‘hub’ use is the car.

            If that’s the case, then it will fail. Nobody without a Tesla will want to subscribe because it will be a service that, unlike numerous other similar services, won’t run on their AV receiver, Sonos, TV, Roku, or any of their other devices, except their phone and Tesla, and for iPhone users, that music service won’t be integrated with the iPhone the way Apple Music is.

            They could do this, but it would be incredibly foolish.

            “Probably the same reason some Auto manufactures are still reluctant to use CarPlay or Android Auto. Auto makers may want to keep customer data to itself.”

            Very few do, and it has nothing to do with customer data. If you look at the premium car brands that don’t CarPlay such as Lexus and Infiniti, you’ll note that their Infotainment Systems are woefully antiquated, and they have plans on coming onboard.

            The only manufacturer I know other than Tesla that doesn’t fall into that category is Land Rover. They developed their own system that was iOS/Android compatible and works well, but customers continued to ask for CarPlay, so they’re coming on board as well.

            1. Why would it ‘fail’ if the objective is to create a ‘walled garden’ within Tesla’s own ecosystem? The target audience is Tesla owners. Tesla music should be just as well integrated into the Tesla as Apple Music is to iPhone.

              If other Auto makers are getting on board with CarPlay and Android Auto, good for them. Tesla as we all know marches to a different beat and is a lot more tech savvy than other makers with their onboard systems. I also doubt anyone serious about purchasing a Tesla is balking due to lack of CarPlay or Android Auto support.

            2. Failure for the company, as defined as, an inability to ever be a profitable endeavor.

              Failure also as in, a service that is never perceived as being comparable to other services like Apple Music, Spotify or others.

              Failure ultimately as in, something that Tesla abandons because it was a really bad idea.

              “I also doubt anyone serious about purchasing a Tesla is balking due to lack of CarPlay or Android Auto support.”

              My wife and I are buying two new cars to be the primary cars for us (which are currently Mercedes). We crossed Tesla off the list as well as Infinity and Lexus (because we want to purchase now rather than wait) right off the bat due to lack of CarPlay. We’re going with Mercedes and/or possibly Volvo.

              Our accountant had a Model S and traded it in for an Audi. The primary complaint was the Infotainment System and its lack of CarPlay.

              Who knows how many sales are lost due to lack of CarPlay and Android Auto, but certainly nobody who uses their phone a significant amount of time across a variety of tasks and features is looking at the Tesla and is attracted by its lack of integration.

              “Tesla as we all know marches to a different beat and is a lot more tech savvy than other makers with their onboard systems.”

              I’d disagree with that as well. Volvo is definitely ahead of them as is Land Rover. Mercedes, Audi, and BMW each are in the same league with different trade-offs, although ultimately I’d go with either of them over Tesla at this point and more importantly having a music service isn’t going to change that when I’m already set up with one that works across everything I own.

            3. Depending on how ‘walled’ the Tesla music service is, I would think ‘success’ in their case would be how many of Tesla owners sign on to the service. Or to put it another way, the success of a provided service is measured by the proportion of the audience that has access to it. Just as you don’t measure the success of an iOS App by the proportion of all smartphone owners on all mobile OSes, the success of the Tesla Music service will be measured by the proportion of the target audience that have access, mainly Tesla owners.There are no real details about the planned music service so I wouldn’t be able to guess at it’s profitability.

              Good for you on having your own priorities list for what you want in your primary vehicle. Like I stated, those that are serious about purchasing a Tesla (primary consideration) would not balk at the availability of CarPlay or Android Auto (secondary or tertiary consideration). I have 3 friends that have bought Teslas and are quite happy with the functionality of the infotainment system and how their smartphones complement what Tesla provides. 2 own iPhones and the 3rd an Android smartphone. To each his own. It is possible that Tesla may consider CarPlay or Android Auto in the future, but as long as their demand outstrips their supply for months into the future, I doubt that is an important consideration for them.

              It’s good you have a system that works well across your systems. Some don’t and may be a better fit for what Tesla provides. Who knows how far the initial seed of Tesla Music may go just starting with Tesla owners as they are a rather affluent bunch.

            4. The problem with measuring success the way you suggest is that either it makes a profit for Tesla directly or indirectly by creating value to the car such that people would purchase it.

              According to you, CarPlay and Android Auto isn’t significant enough to sway a purchase, so under the same logic, I don’t see how a music service alone would, especially one that would be constrained in terms of compatibility.

              Further, maintaining a subscription music service isn’t viable unless it’s scaled up to a significant level. With low numbers, content is squeezed out due to lack of being able to negotiate against exclusivity. So in addition to not being able to use the service across all the devices a Tesla owner is likely to have, the music selection would be far lesser than Apple Music, Spotify, Google Play and others.

              So if it’s an inferior service in terms of content and compatibility, costs the company money directly and doesn’t sway car purchasing decisions, what’s the point?

              “Like I stated, those that are serious about purchasing a Tesla (primary consideration) would not balk at the availability of CarPlay or Android Auto (secondary or tertiary consideration).”

              Like I said, for two cars, we’re going with Mercedes or Volvo instead of Tesla primarily because of CarPlay, and our accountant traded in her Tesla because of it.

              And yes, I realize this is anecdotal, and obviously Tesla sells cars despite the lack of CarPlay and Android Auto, but your comment was that it didn’t impact sales at all. I’m giving you 3 absolute examples of where it did, in my very limited exposure.

              But again, if CarPlay and Android Auto aren’t negatively impacting Tesla sales, why would a significantly lower scale music service positively impact sales?

              What’s the point if it can’t do something better, earn a profit, or increase sales and it diverts resources from other things they could be doing?

            5. Don’t misunderstand. My point about success is that Tesla may measure it differently from you or me. Tesla’s market is much smaller than the major smartphone OSes.

              Regarding CarPlay and Android Auto, I am suggesting that for those that don’t make either a major consideration and have decided on a Tesla will not be swayed. I understand you have prioritized selecting CarPlay. That’s fine, you are not serious about purchasing a Tesla. The fact is that there are enough people that want a Tesla despite support for CarPlay or Android Auto that they can’t produce them fast enough.

              I’m not suggesting that having a music service will significantly increase sales nor be particularly profitable. I’m suggesting that the point of having one would allow Tesla to defend a ‘walled garden’ excluding outside services where possible.

            6. That’s fine, you are not serious about purchasing a Tesla.

              I don’t know how much more clear I could be about this. If Tesla had CarPlay, there would be 2 Teslas right now in our garage and one in our driveway. The two in the garage would’ve been purchase by my wife and I and the one in the driveway would’ve been the one that our accountant traded in specifically because it didn’t have CarPlay.

              Tesla not having CarPlay was the sole reason we didn’t purchase 2 Teslas (their Model S and their SUV). It was the deal breaker.

              “My point about success is that Tesla may measure it differently from you or me.”

              Right, but if it’s not making a direct profit, not making an indirect profit (through increased car sales), not improving the user experiencing for existing users (that could be using a better service), diverts resources from things they could be offering, only to kill off the service after a brief period, then what’s left in terms of defining it as a success.. sh*ts and giggles?

              Tesla’s market is much smaller than the major smartphone OSes.”

              Right, and therein lies the rub. Because the market is so significantly smaller (by orders of magnitude), they don’t have the ability to compete with services on price, quality, content, economy of scale, or platform compatibility with a large number of companies currently in the market. So why do this?

              “The fact is that there are enough people that want a Tesla despite support for CarPlay or Android Auto that they can’t produce them fast enough.”

              Right, if Tesla can ignore people who will not purchase one because of a lacking in their IS, then why invest in building out an inferior music subscription system? Either divert those resources to CarPlay and Android Auto, or don’t make the investment and realize that you can still sell cars regardless?

              “I’m suggesting that the point of having one would allow Tesla to defend a ‘walled garden’ excluding outside services where possible.”

              And what I’m saying is that a walled garden makes sense when you offer a complete ecosystem. However, when your ecosystem is solely a car, walling in that garden doesn’t make sense when your competition has plenty of options of extending the garden you have, whether it’s a walled Apple, Android, or an open garden with Spotify.

              I get in these debates all the time. I’m never wrong about this. Tesla either won’t do a music service, or it will, and it will fail… as in never turn a direct profit, and Tesla will shut it down within 3-5 years. If you’d like to make a wager, let me know.

              BTW: none of what I’m saying is to disparage Tesla as a whole. They’re great cars, and for anyone who wouldn’t be using CarPlay or Android Auto, I’d highly recommend them. The fact remains though, Tesla can’t build a music service that’s not significantly inferior to Apple, Google, Amazon or Spotify, so if that’s what they’re offering as the sole integration, they’d be doing a disservice to their customers.

            7. I’m not sure you understand what I mean by ‘serious’ about Tesla. I understand purchasing a Tesla is secondary to having CarPlay in your new vehicle by your repeated anecdote. You even say “Tesla not having CarPlay was the sole reason we didn’t purchase 2 Teslas (their Model S and their SUV). It was the deal breaker.” That is fine, you fall in the group that I consider not ‘serious’ about purchasing Tesla.

              The Tesla Music service (if offered) would probably be fully integrated into their infotainment system much like Apple Music with iOS. This does not necessarily exclude using Bluetooth to connect to your iOS or Android smartphone for calls and audio playback via other music services or media stored on those devices. From what I understand CarPlay and Android Auto both pretty much take over the infotainment system interface. Perhaps Tesla does not want to relinquish that much control over their onboard system. As such what features do think you’ll use on CarPlay that is not covered in one way or another in Tesla’s current system + a bluetooth connection to your iPhone?

              We don’t know what kind of deals Tesla can make with music providers and can speculate that their audience is not big enough to obtain ‘good’ terms. Maybe the service will be ‘free’ to users and simply take a cut of any ‘sales’ of music that users make plus a small fee to music providers to be ‘vendors’ on the music service. The fact is we don’t know what the terms will be for the service or if the model will be anything like what exists now. Till it arrives I don’t feel it prudent to say the service will be failure.

              I used “wallled garden” but perhaps that’s not quite the term for Tesla’s model since you can access other music services you’re used to via bluetooth connection. Maybe a walled area (Tesla System) with a corresponding “Free Trade Zone” (bluetooth connected device).

              I agree with you that they can’t do a ‘me too’ music service which will turn out to be inferior. I’m sure if that thought comes easily to you and I, Tesla has already also considered it. If they are announcing their own music service I suspect it will be a model we haven’t imagined that is significantly different from the competition they are willing to take a chance on.

  2. You want an Apple Music rival?
    Buy Roon, Tidal, HDTracks and combine them.

    The software, the streaming and the library that are each better than Apple’s offerings.

    OR….Apple could just get off their ass and Make Music Right!!

    1. Perhaps you should look at the iTunes Charts before saying something so stupid? Beats 1 plays music that is popular among younger listeners (teens to twenties) – has nothing to do with race. Furthermore, Apple Music offers many different radio stations. Maybe there’s a “Whites Only” music station for you?

Leave a Reply to iSmile Cancel reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.