Microsoft to pay Universal for every Zune sold

A Reuters story reports that Microsoft has agreed to pay Universal Music Group a fee for each new Zune music player that is sold.

Apple currently does not give a cut of iPod sales to music companies.

"We felt that any business that's built on the bedrock of music we should share in," said Doug Morris, chief executive of Universal, owned by French media giant Vivendi.

At present music studios take a cut of legal digital song purchases but see no part of hardware sales, but this could set a precendent that may affect Apple as well as others in the industry. In some countries (such as Canada), there have been attempts at implementing an "iPod tax" to offset piracy losses for music companies.

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