Amazon is said to be in the final stages of negotiations with record labels over licensing deals that would allow the online retailer to launch a competitor to iTunes Match. It has reportedly reached agreements with Universal Music Group and EMI already, and is now close to wrapping up deals with Sony Music Entertainment and Warner Bros. as well.
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The music streaming service Grooveshark, which was pulled from the App Store a while ago after it upset a number of major record labels, has returned to the iPhone — and other mobile devices — with a new HTML5 web app. The app can’t be pulled by Apple this time, but how long will it last?
Apple’s iCloud music locker will not require users to laboriously upload all the music in their iTunes libraries, but will instead rely on “scan and match.”
Cupertino now has three out of the four big music labels signed, but even so, could Apple’s iCloud music locker and streaming service be delayed even later than its rumored WWDC launch? The music business is a tricky one, and although Apple’s got most of the labels signed, the negotiations with publishers are still in their early stages.
Apple’s plans to bring music streaming to the upcoming iCloud service are coming together swiftly this week as the company signs up a third major record label.
There’s a reason Amazon’s responding to Apple’s Beatles iTunes coup by slashing pricing on Fab Four CDs instead of undercutting the iTunes price in their own music service, Amazon MP3: Apple’s secured the online exclusive to Beatles tracks until sometime in 2011.
As predicted, Apple’s big iTunes announcement today wasn’t iTunes in the cloud, or streaming, or a subscription fee… it’s John, Paul, Ringo and George. After ten years, the Beatles and their music catalogue have finally hit iTunes.
Although it’s not been announced on Apple.com as of writing, the Beatles’ presence on the iTunes Store now commands most of the upper fold. The entire catalog seems to be available, along with a link to the band’s page, the Beatles Box set and more. You’re even getting a decent deal on the Beatles Box Set: it cost $250 when it was released last year, and currently costs $154.99 on Amazon at a heavily discounted price. Apple’s price? Just $150 for every Beatles song ever recorded.
The sudden resolution of Apple’s decades-long standoff with Apple Records, first for the Apple trademark and then for the Beatles catalog, has happened swiftly. One thing’s for sure: however Steve got Apple Records and EMI to agree to iTunes’ terms, it’s going to make one hell of a read when the story finally comes to light.
Although many of us already own the Beatles’ catalog — I have the full collection of the recent remasters already converted to lossless MP3s — and while many will be apathetic to this news, this is a big win for Apple, as the record labels release their death grip on one of the last digital music holdouts.
CDs and records aren’t the future of music anymore: iTunes is, and the labels have finally been forced to give up one of their last aces-in-the-holes in order to stay relevant.