A few of the record labels that Apple is speaking with include Sony Music, Warner Music Group and EMI

Apple is looking to go head-to-head with the likes of Pandora, as it explores new Internet radio opportunities.

The Wall Street Journal recently reported that Apple is looking to launch an Internet radio program of its own that is similar to Pandora and iHeartRadio. It will stream music based on user preferences, but without the usual restrictions that some other services tend to burden customers with.

When using Pandora, for instance, there is a limit on the number of times you can skip a song. Services like these also limit the number of times you can play a song. They also have advertisements, but these can sometimes be eliminated for an annual fee ($36 per year for Pandora).

But Apple wants to bypass all of that by making deals with record labels that could allow Apple users to play or skip songs as much as they'd like. It doesn't look like ads can be skipped though, as Apple will likely use the iAd platform to pass commercials through its radio.

A few of the record labels that Apple is in talks with include Sony Music, Warner Music Group and EMI.

Many details remain unclear so far, such as whether the service will be free or require a subscription. Some speculate that it'll work through the iPhone or iPad, where the service may be linked to a user's iTunes account.

Apple is due to announce the iPhone 5 at a press conference on September 12, but it looks to be too soon for an announcement about the Internet radio service as well.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

"And boy have we patented it!" -- Steve Jobs, Macworld 2007
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