Hidden Buttons in iOS 6.1 Lend Weight to Apple Radio Service Rumors
9to5Mac reports finding files for radio buttons in the iPad Music app in iOS 6.1 that could lend weight to last year's rumors that Apple plans to launch a Pandora-style service, providing streaming access to music which could then be purchased if desired.
The files, first found by iAust1n, include a series of eight "radio" buttons, several of which have the word 'buy' in the filenames, suggesting plans to allow the purchase of music tracks from within the app. Interestingly, the piece notes that the files are found only on the iPad, not the iPhone.
The files are called some variation of “radio button” with an icon that looks similar to the radio icon that used to be in iTunes for Mac (it was traded for a more prominent top location in iTunes 11 without the antena tower). The iPad music app currently doesn’t have any radio functionality so our first thought was that Apple would be adding an iTunes-like ‘traditional’ streaming radio to the iPad.
More interestingly, the name of these button files and are labelled with ‘buy’ in the filename which could imply exciting new functionality.
Bloomberg had suggested a Q1 2013 launch date for the service, although follow-up reports had indicated that negotiations with record labels were moving slowly. With files perhaps related to such a service now apparently in place in iOS 6.1, Apple may be laying the groundwork for a launch once it is able to strike content deals.