EMI is preparing to launch a music service by the end of the year, representing the latest direct-to-consumer business being planned by a major label.
"This is not an effort to compete with iTunes or Amazon," said a source familiar with the situation.
The service may live on EMI.com, which is dedicated to a mix of corporate and artist news. The music service will feature a mixture of paid and free content and also might include non-EMI artists as well.
EMI is positioning the effort, which was first reported Wednesday in the Financial Times, as an experimental "consumer lab." One option being considered is a music discovery function where fans of one act could be shown music that matches up with their tastes, similar to how such sites as lastfm.com and Pandora.com operate.