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  • Apple Rolls Out iTunes Match as iTunes Finally Comes to The Clouds


    Well, now we know what Apple is doing with its new data centers and its 2009 purchase of Lala. Yes, it's finally happening. Today at Apple's WWDC, Steve Jobs declared that iTunes is floating away into the clouds and into an entirely new era for digital music storage, management, and enjoyment. Following the presentations of Mac OSX Lion, iOS 5, and iCloud, Steve Jobs turned to iTunes.

    "It's the same old story," Jobs said in his introduction of the iTunes improvement. "I buy something on my iPhone and it's not on my other devices. I grab my iPod and I go to listen to that song and it ain't there!" Apple has finally rolled out a solution to this ubiquitous conundrum. And it involves launching iTunes into the clouds, after what feels like years of speculation that it ultimately would end up there.

    "Now when I buy a song on one of my devices it automatically downloads to all of my devices without having to sync or do anything at all." According to Jobs, "This is the first time we've seen this in the music industry. There's no charge for multiple downloads to different devices." It's all made possible with a new "purchased" tab in iTunes, which enables users to browse all of their albums and then tap the corresponding cloud button to make the magic happen and push the music to all your connected iOS devices with iTunes.

    Of course, while this feature relates to the music you've purchased through iTunes, what about the music you've ripped but not purchased? Steve says there’s three ways you can deal with this: “One, you can sync your devices over Wi-Fi or cable, and then you can rely on iCloud. Or, if it’s just a few songs you love, you can buy them on iTunes. But we’re offering a third way, and we call it iTunes Match.”

    Calling it an "industry leading offer," with a price tag of $24.99 per year, the iTunes Match service will scan your entire library of songs - yes, the entire library - and subsequently match the songs up with the library of songs available in iTunes, of which there are now more than 18 million. Jobs says the new service "will take just minutes" to do all the matching and syncing. He also reminded us how much longer it takes for Google and Amazon to provide a similar function - not to mention at a much greater cost.

    Source: Apple
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Apple Rolls Out iTunes Match as iTunes Finally Comes to The Clouds started by Michael Essany View original post
    Comments 39 Comments
    1. Cokeman's Avatar
      Cokeman -
      See if I get this right. I ripped 5 albums to my pc in mp3 format (legal or illegal). For 24.99 I get a "legit" version stored in iCloud.
      Those albums then sync with any of my devices including my pc in AAC 256kbb DRM free.

      Can I sync those albums to my pc & no longer pay for iTunes Match? If I no longer pay will it remove all those from my devices & the iCloud?
    1. feidhlim1986's Avatar
      feidhlim1986 -
      Why doesn't the comparison chart between iTunes Match, Amazon and Google show Google Music as being FREE instead of $???
    1. countchocula's Avatar
      countchocula -
      Look at it this way it's only $25 (the price MobileMe should have been). I saying whats that a week of Starcucks for some of us.
    1. MOJO5873's Avatar
      MOJO5873 -
      Just to make sure I get it. All our music will still be stored on our divices? I was hoping to clean up some space.
    1. Poseidon79's Avatar
      Poseidon79 -
      Y'all need to pay more attn. If a song you try and "match" is not found in their database it will be uploaded from your computer to the cloud. Like I posted before... I can upload all the live music sets to the cloud.
    1. zauriel's Avatar
      zauriel -
      I guess I'm slightly disappointed, because I thought that the iCloud would involve streaming. I was hoping that I could choose to not physically store songs on my iPhone or iPad and instead stream them from the cloud, based on my library. That I can see paying $25/year for.

      What I don't understand is why it costs $25/year to do a scan of my library for non-iTunes songs to match and sync to my devices. I suppose it's possible some people out there are still buying CDs and ripping them into iTunes, but how many more years from now do they think people are going to be doing that? I can only assume that they did it solely to address people who download via torrents ... and $25/year to turn pirated music into legit music is a pretty sweet deal, but it does beg the question someone posed earlier ... if you discontinue your iTunes Match service, do you get to keep those synced legit versions, or do they get taken away?

      Regardless, I'm still disappointed that there's no streaming. I was really thinking it was going to be the "one last thing ..." this time around.
    1. NSXrebel's Avatar
      NSXrebel -
      What $25/yr gets you.

      1. "Legitimate" back up of your ripped/pirated music, unlimited songs.
      2. For those songs you have that are not in iTunes, it will upload and back up in the cloud for your other devices to download.
      3. Automatic syncing to all your iDevices of new purchases, or you can pick and choose which songs you want to sync to your iDevice. So no, you don't have to have the same library as your significant other, or other authorized devices on your account.
      4. Your music gets upgraded to 256kbps AAC DRM-free. You can still convert those songs in iTunes to MP3 and other supported formats for your non-iDevices.
      5. If you cancel iTunes Match, you still keep songs that have been Matched since you already paid for the subscription. You will not lose those songs as they would have been downloaded to iTunes on your computer and/or iDevices.

      What iTunes Match will NOT do for you.

      1. It will not upload your whole library to iCloud. It will create a list of songs you already purchased and songs that get matched, so you can download/sync to other iDevices without having to sync to a computer. Those songs will also be synced to other authorized computers.
      2. iTunes Match will NOT stream music. You want to play that new song you purchased on your computer at home? Just use iCloud to sync your new purchases, or pick and choose which new purchases you want to your device.

      For me it's gonna be a great deal, since my music library is over 15k songs. $25/yr is a steal, specially since 99% of my music is not from iTunes. AND "MobileMe" is now FREE.
    1. spazturtle's Avatar
      spazturtle -
      Quote Originally Posted by zauriel View Post
      if you discontinue your iTunes Match service, do you get to keep those synced legit versions, or do they get taken away?
      Yes once you use iTunes match it acts like any other iTunes purchase, you can download the file to your computer. I don't know if it will have DRM though.

      If you want to stream music from the web use Google Music.
    1. NSXrebel's Avatar
      NSXrebel -
      Quote Originally Posted by spazturtle View Post
      Yes once you use iTunes match it acts like any other iTunes purchase, you can download the file to your computer. I don't know if it will have DRM though.

      If you want to stream music from the web use Google Music.
      Apple does not use DRM any longer on music.
    1. Drizahy's Avatar
      Drizahy -
      Quote Originally Posted by Doran View Post
      So the library of CDs I have that I "ripped" into iTunes was "illegal"? I agree with that guy. I already bought my music and now I have to pay $25 to put them in the cloud.... That kinda sux.

      Don't get me wrong..... $25 a year isn't that much money but it's still money I shouldn't have to pay for this.
      Damn I wish I could upload all my songs to SOMEONE ELSE's servers securely and have it share across everything I own for free without hassle. Guess people forgot Steve said people have 3 OPTIONS. But no options are better than having some.
    1. epignosis567's Avatar
      epignosis567 -
      i have over 60,000+ songs in my itunes library alone.
      as much as i HATE apple, and as much as i prefer google, if i can pay only $25/year to have cloud access to 5000+ albums, this is the one and only non-hardware purchase i will be willing to make from apple.

      also, all the ios5 "improvements" were, once again, just stolen from the jailbreak community.
      "innovative..." ha!

      edit: i should also add that i'm truly impressed with apple on the cloud. i was certain that they would only offer music purchased through itunes. good move apple. but you're still a bunch of crypto-facists...
    1. GrandMstrBud's Avatar
      GrandMstrBud -
      So if you update your iPhone or iPad or have to restore it and it wipes out all of your data and you download all of the songs again will that count against your 3G data use?
    1. krustypinoy's Avatar
      krustypinoy -
      Quote Originally Posted by OETProductions View Post
      This is sweet
      To the clouds!!!
    1. FleetGeek's Avatar
      FleetGeek -
      Quote Originally Posted by GrandMstrBud View Post
      So if you update your iPhone or iPad or have to restore it and it wipes out all of your data and you download all of the songs again will that count against your 3G data use?
      Depends if you can restore from the cloud I suppose. If you have to restore from a backup, why not just use your mac/pc?
      3G access can be switched off, although no idea what effect that will have!!
    1. GrandMstrBud's Avatar
      GrandMstrBud -
      Quote Originally Posted by FleetGeek View Post
      Depends if you can restore from the cloud I suppose. If you have to restore from a backup, why not just use your mac/pc?
      3G access can be switched off, although no idea what effect that will have!!
      Well part of this is to avoid having to store all of your music on a computer and having to sync through a wired connection. With that being said even if you only have a couple of GB's of data you can easily hit that 2GB mark in a month. Yes there is WiFi but say you don't have WiFi at home. Surprisingly there are a lot of people without WiFi at home. It doesn't affect me since I have the old unlimited plan on my iPad but not everyone has that.
    1. Daerid's Avatar
      Daerid -
      I have a library of over 65k songs. Do I still get Match for $25 a year? If so, I'm in.
    1. NSXrebel's Avatar
      NSXrebel -
      Quote Originally Posted by Daerid View Post
      I have a library of over 65k songs. Do I still get Match for $25 a year? If so, I'm in.
      Learn to read or watch the Keynote. Unlimited songs for $24.99/yr.
    1. cloudme's Avatar
      cloudme -
      I'm all for the cloud. I ripped some 800 cds to itunes about three years ago in what I thought was a future proof 192 kbps. I have a few hundred songs I bought on iTunes before the files were high quality that I never felt like paying for the upgraded bitrate when they were offering such upgrades. I have a few thousand songs from sites like emusic that are of lesser quality. I have about 400 cds that I ripped over the last year that I ripped in mp3 format accidentally instead of aac format. I am all in for paying $25 a year if I can access higher quality files than the ones I have ripped. Even if I don't get to keep the upgraded files (though that would really be a nice perk).
    1. NSXrebel's Avatar
      NSXrebel -
      Quote Originally Posted by cloudme View Post
      I'm all for the cloud. I ripped some 800 cds to itunes about three years ago in what I thought was a future proof 192 kbps. I have a few hundred songs I bought on iTunes before the files were high quality that I never felt like paying for the upgraded bitrate when they were offering such upgrades. I have a few thousand songs from sites like emusic that are of lesser quality. I have about 400 cds that I ripped over the last year that I ripped in mp3 format accidentally instead of aac format. I am all in for paying $25 a year if I can access higher quality files than the ones I have ripped. Even if I don't get to keep the upgraded files (though that would really be a nice perk).
      But you do get to keep the upgraded files. Those songs that get matched and upgraded receive the same benefit as purchases songs, so they will be treated as such. Also, don't forget that broken/missing ID3 tags will be fixed, as well as missing album artwork.