Apple Inc. and the four major recording labels are working on launching in the fall a music offering code-named “Cocktail” that aims to add value to digital albums sold on the online iTunes Store, according to two people with knowledge of the discussions.
The new package will include liner notes, artwork and potentially cellphone ringtones and music videos in a unified software package that the labels hope will boost sales of albums, instead of just single tracks.
The people spoke on condition of anonymity because details of the offering had not been finalized, and they were not authorized to speak publicly.
Talk of the enhanced digital album offering was first reported by the Financial Times.
An Apple spokesman declined to comment.
Music sales have declined nationwide in seven of the last eight years, largely because of illegal file-sharing over the Internet, but also because consumers tend to buy individual songs rather than full albums.
The “Cocktail” project is the latest attempt by the labels to get consumers to spend more.
In February, Apple and fourth-ranked EMI Group PLC unveiled an iTunes Pass, which gave music fans willing to pay $18.99 access to early release singles, a new album upon its release and exclusive videos, remixes and other content.
In April, Apple allowed record labels to set song prices in three different tiers, at 69 cents, 99 cents and $1.29. So far the impact of such efforts on sales volumes has been minimal.