Wednesday, August 20, 2008

iTunes Unlimited Coming Next Month?

Image representing Apple as depicted in CrunchBaseImage via CrunchBase, source unknown We'll see if this actually plays out... but news is (re)surfacing that Apple's iTunes subscription plans are for real.

Rumors of iTunes music subscriptions fly again | The Industry Standard: "MacDailyNews says the service will be called 'iTunes Unlimited' and offer 50% of the songs currently on the traditional U.S. iTunes store through the program at launch. The subscription will be for one year and be available through iTunes or a retail box, similar to how MobileMe/DotMac is sold. iTunes Unlimited would launch, initially, on the U.S. store only. The subscription would cost $129.99 on its own, $179.99 with MobileMe or $99.99 for existing MobileMe subscribers. The site claims a late September announcement with late October rollout, just in time for the holiday season. TUAW received (almost certainly from the same source) a similar report."

But if it does, I won't hesitate to be the first to say "I told you so". :-)

Also check out some of my speculation on Apple's continued subscription world domination plan from January of this year.

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Anonymous said...

Strange that Apple would try a model that others have not been successful with. I loved Yahoo! Music Unlimited, and was sad to see it go.

jherskowitz said...

That's their standard operating procedure... belittle the idea, wait a year or two, then launch it with the claim that they "invented" it. See AppleTV, portable video players, movie downloads, music downloads, media players, etc....

Anonymous said...

Well, my #1 complaint about iTunes is that they don't treat it like a locker, once they know you've got the file that's it - 1 download.

So if you lose a drive with 2000 songs on it, you've just lost $2000 in music (unless you've got it backed up).

Enter MobileMe ... just like you say, an older idea that they're (re-)inventing. Great stuff, well-integrated with the whole apple iLifestyle.

Thing is, now iTunes is making less sense ... I'm really limited to a single iTunes instance that I run my AppleTV, iPhone and iPod off of - if I have 3 Macs I have to sync with exactly one of them. For instance, I can't pick up new podcasts from my work machine.

I think there's a great case to be made for having local files (see AppleTV - it's essentially caching to a local drive), but unlike some of these articles I really see streaming music as a logical next step in the direction they're pushing (MobileMe, etc).

I can't wait until they give me a 1TB 'locker' for all of my Apple apps to sync / stream from. No more backups, no more fileservers, no more remembering which files are where.