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Apple launches iTunes Match service in UK

by Steven Williamson on 20 December 2011, 16:31

Tags: Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL)

Quick Link: HEXUS.net/qabahz

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Apple has kicked off its iTunes Match service, a cloud-based feature that allows users to back up their music library to the iCloud and access it on up to ten devices.

Costing £21.99 a year, iTunes Match can hold up to 25,000 songs in the iCloud and is built into the iTunes app on your Mac or PC and the Music app on your iOS devices.

The main benefit is that you can upload songs from your entire music library, including imported tunes from CDs or items purchased somewhere other than iTunes.

It then matches any DRM-free songs that were not purchased via iTunes and re-downloads them free of charge as high-quality 256-kbps DRM-free AAC files.



Once the DRM-free tracks are uploaded to iTunes Match, you are able to play them on up to ten devices, including a maximum of five computers

iTunes Match is a defining moment for the music industry and its battle against piracy. Rather than fight piracy directly, the new service seeks to generate money from those illicit downloads by giving users the chance to upload MP3s and other files that may been downloaded via Bittorrent sites.

"This wouldn't happen with any other company. Apple basically owns most of the music industry's most valuable digital customers," said Mark Mulligan, an independent music analyst. "This is not so much the music industry saying 'we've lost the fight' [against piracy] but more pulling out the troops and saying 'let's make money from that which has already happened'.

"The world has changed. There is a recognition from record label executives that the fight against piracy can't be definitively won. Apple is saying [to labels], 'we're going to give you revenue if you give us licenses. The whole debate about iTunes Match amounting to an amnesty is a red herring. This is the world's most valuable digital music service investing in something that's actually incredibly valuable to the music industry."

To enable iTunes Match on an iOS device you’ll need version 10.5.2. Head to Settings -> Music -> Turn On iTunes Match. On a Mac, open iTunes and click the Store menu, then click Turn On iTunes Match. On an Apple TV, go to Music -> iCloud Library.


HEXUS Forums :: 8 Comments

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As much as I dislike Apple I actually really like this idea, especially the part about getting high quality versions back. £22 seems fair too, I'd happily pay that.
Got to hand it to them, it sounds like a great idea.. but no way I'll ever install iTunes.
Thats actually a pretty good deal when you consider that I pay £80 per year to be able to 'rent' music for all my devices.

Only thing is, why bother with the whole "you have to pirate the mp3 in the first place" rather than just let me select from the catalog ala Spotify or Zune thing. Not sure I like that because I'd have thought I'm still breaking the law....
TheAnimus
Thats actually a pretty good deal when you consider that I pay £80 per year to be able to 'rent' music for all my devices.

Only thing is, why bother with the whole "you have to pirate the mp3 in the first place" rather than just let me select from the catalog ala Spotify or Zune thing. Not sure I like that because I'd have thought I'm still breaking the law....


Yeah I don't get that either.

So if I rip an MP3 from a CD, and upload it to iTunes Match, I then get a DRM AAC version to replace it.
Or if I illegally download an MP3 from the web.
Or presumably if I download a legal MP3 then change the tags to match the song I'm looking for.

What's the difference between this and the passport MP3 model that we're all familiar with, except the hassle of having to pirate the music first?

Surely I'm missing something?
TheAnimus
Thats actually a pretty good deal when you consider that I pay £80 per year to be able to 'rent' music for all my devices.

Only thing is, why bother with the whole "you have to pirate the mp3 in the first place" rather than just let me select from the catalog ala Spotify or Zune thing. Not sure I like that because I'd have thought I'm still breaking the law....


'cause there's lots of legitimate users who've bought CDs and the like and have music on their PCs from ripping CDs (no longer illegal) - I rather doubt this is intended as an amnesty, it's just that its main (or stated) purpose is a service for legitimate consumers.

Cynically, I half expect lots of likely illegal music collections to be identified and the police to come through the doors at 4am to seize the computer for evidence ;)

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