Reuters reports that EU antitrust regulators will decide by July 30 whether or not they'll give the green light to Apple's $3 billion acquisition of Beats.
"The Commission can either clear the deal unconditionally or demand concessions if it sees competition issues," the report notes. "It can also open an extensive investigation if it has deeper concerns."
At this point, it's hard to pinpoint any concerns EU regulators, or any regulative body for that matter, might have with the proposed deal. The streaming music market is as competitive as ever; Pandora and Spotify remain popular services, while Amazon just recently rolled out its own streaming service for Prime members.
Originally announced in late May, the Beats acquisition will likely be finalized during the third quarter of this year.
While it remains to be seen how Apple plans to integrate Beats into the iOS mix, Apple would be wise to leverage the popularity of iOS to get the Beats app in front of as many consumers as possible. With over 800 million credit cards on file, Apple can quickly turn Beats subscriptions into a valuable revenue stream. As we've highlighted previously, if Apple is able to convert just 1% of the iOS user base into Beats subscribers, that alone would add nearly $1 billion in revenue to Apple's yearly bottom line. If Apple can convince 1.25% of its existing user base to sign up, it will already have as many subscribers as Spotify.
With Apple lagging on the music front lately, how they choose to integrate Beats into iTunes (if at all) and into the iOS ecosystem will certainly be one of the more exciting things to keep an eye on in the coming months.