Apple's potential Web-based iTunes will be 'social, not streaming'

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 2014
Apple may reveal a "big overhaul" of its iTunes Music Store next week, likely to be a lightweight Web version, but the service will not be updated to allow users to stream their content from the cloud, music executives have said.



Peter Kafka of Media Memo spoke with music executives who indicated that Apple has not yet approached the largest labels to obtain the necessary licenses for offering streaming content. Executives, however, said they do expect iTunes to be overhauled, even without a streaming service, and the new iTunes could be unveiled at next Wednesday's event. He said users should "think social, not streaming."



"Apple plays its cards close to the vest even with the music labels it works with, so the people I've talked to are making informed guesses," Kafka said. "That said, music sources tell me they're expecting a lightweight, Web-based version of the iTunes store. The new version would be designed to sync up easily with the rest o the Internet and make it much easier for customers to share their musical tastes (but not songs) with friends."



Executives said they believe a Web-based version will allow buyers to purchase content through the Web-based version. It could also offer easier integration for services like Twitter and Facebook, allowing users to link to the store and share playlists, songs and albums.



"Some label executives also speculate about a wireless system that makes it easier for you to manage iTunes purchases," he wrote. "In theory, Apple could make it possible for you to move a copy of a song you bought on your iPhone onto your laptop without having to manually connect the two devices."



While Apple's current contracts do offer it the ability to add features like wireless syncing of purchases on up to five devices at a time, they do not have the necessary deals to offer a cloud-based streaming service. Kafka said it's "possible, but not probable" that the company could go ahead and launch such a service without the necessary deals from record companies.



Apple first began migrating iTunes to the cloud last November, when it quietly launched iTunes Preview. The Web-based service allows users to view iTunes content without launching Apple's desktop media management application. Subsequent updates have brought about browser-based song sampling and the ability to view App Store software.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 48
    herbapouherbapou Posts: 2,221member
    If the software is in place, I would start the service with the studios and music that I already made deals with. So I would go ahead and start streaming and renting shows at 99c even if its not available for all content. If its a succes, the others are going to follow.



    Also, Apple should made it more clear pricing on Itunes is setup by the content providers. Lots of folks think Apple is a bad big brother that dictate everything on Itunes. In fact, they are the ones fighting the studios to lower pricing and allow monthly package deals. They are fighting for internet TV with studios that just wont let go there classic methods of distribution.



    Ps:

    I could not careless about ipods, please annonce a new AppleTV. I am getting scare it wont be annonced. I want to ear the Columbo line, "just one more thing..."
  • Reply 2 of 48
    rot'napplerot'napple Posts: 1,839member
    Think LaLa?!
  • Reply 3 of 48
    asciiascii Posts: 5,941member
    Will they rename it simply iStore?
  • Reply 4 of 48
    diddydiddy Posts: 282member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ascii View Post


    Will they rename it simply iStore?



    Why replace an known brand name (iTunes) with one that is unknown and has no presence in the Apple consciousness? iTunes is well known and practically ubiquitous and one of the most valuable name that Apple owns. You might as well ask if Microsoft ever plans to change the name "Outlook" to "Microsoft Mail" (which they also own I believe)
  • Reply 5 of 48
    asciiascii Posts: 5,941member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by diddy View Post


    Why replace an known brand name (iTunes) with one that is unknown and has no presence in the Apple consciousness? iTunes is well known and practically ubiquitous and one of the most valuable name that Apple owns. You might as well ask if Microsoft ever plans to change the name "Outlook" to "Microsoft Mail" (which they also own I believe)



    Because it will now exist outside iTunes?
  • Reply 6 of 48
    I'm confused...so what's the gain of a web version of iTunes when I can use the software version of iTunes that actually plays songs? So I have to login to the website to see what my "friends" are sharing? Then log in to the software to actually buy the music? Why not just integrate the two....?



    Is this just going Twitter/Facebook/Social integration just because? I'm a Macbook Pro/iPod Touch multiples of each family, but this is just a let down. Zune store still wins with its streaming/subscription pricing model. I've used it as a free trial when on my work machine and was just blown away. Couldn't justify using it thought due to my deep iTunes integration already built into my current hardware. But who knows, maybe Apple will surprise next week.



    I just don't see "social" as major innovation, especially with a LaLa team/code now owned by Apple.
  • Reply 7 of 48
    joe hsjoe hs Posts: 488member
    I fail to see how I would benefit from an online "music tastes" sharing service.

    I really hope iTunes X is much more more than just an add-on online service. 64bit would be a good start.
  • Reply 8 of 48
    sendmesendme Posts: 567member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post








    ... music executives have said.

    ... said they do expect iTunes to be overhauled,...making informed guesses,"...music sources tell me they're expecting ...

    Executives said they believe...It could also offer ...

    "Some label executives also speculate ... "In theory, Apple could make it possible ... it's "possible, but not probable" .





    "Not Probable". Just guesses by the clueless Music Industry.



    <YAWN>



    When will these guys learn?
  • Reply 9 of 48
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    1) I almost forgot about LaLa, Rot?nApple. I wonder if their tech will be implemented into these new services.



    2) I expect 64-bit/Cocoa iTunes app to finally be released as iTunes X. I would expect that such a huge rewrite will come with a bunch of new bugs and a whole mess of UI changes so I hope there is a way for users to have both apps at the same time before they make a complete transition. In other words, seamlessly sharing an iTunes database.



    3) I think a web version of iTunes is overdue. With smartphones, tablets and other internet connected media devices on the rise Apple has a chance to lose its iTunes hold if it does not offer a way for these non-Mac OS X and non-Windows operating systems to connect to the iTunes Store and iTunes libraries.



    4) Netflix says that streaming an SD movie costs them 3¢ so I can see streaming your iTS audio as being feasible.





    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ascii View Post


    Because it will now exist outside iTunes?



    Diddy is right, you don?t remove the core part of a brand name that sells. iStore is generic. iTunes is well known. Anyone can put a lowercase ?i? before a product name, but iTunes belongs to Apple. They invented the word, they built the brand. It would be the dumbest business move in the history of technology to drop iTunes from the iTunes Store.
  • Reply 10 of 48
    asciiascii Posts: 5,941member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    Diddy is right, you don?t remove the core part of a brand name that sells. iStore is generic. iTunes is well known. Anyone can put a lowercase ?i? before a product name, but iTunes belongs to Apple. They invented the word, they built the brand. It would be the dumbest business move in the history of technology to drop iTunes from the iTunes Store.



    I think people associate any iAnything with Apple, and therefore quality. It is the iAnything brand they have been building up too.
  • Reply 11 of 48
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Apple may reveal a "big overhaul" of its iTunes Music Store next week ... and the new iTunes could be unveiled ... music sources tell me they're expecting a lightweight, Web-based version of the iTunes store. The new version would be designed to sync up easily with the rest o the Internet and make it much easier for customers to share their musical tastes (but not songs) with friends."....



    Since this is a tech blog, do you think you guys could shy away from the "web-based" term and maybe talk about the actual technical differences instead? I know it's still hypothetical at this stage but this whole area is a rich topic of conversation, or should be.



    Since iTunes could already be called "web-based" in it's current incarnation, "browser-based" would be more accurate, but better still would be a more technical discussion of what could actually change.
  • Reply 12 of 48
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ascii View Post


    I think people associate any iAnything with Apple, and therefore quality. It is the iAnything brand they have been building up too.



    People do, but that doesn?t mean Apple owns the right or that it would be a sound business move. On top of that I can think of many brands that used a leading ?i? before and after Apple started using it.



    When people say Cola I think Coca-Cola/Coke* and assume most of the world thinks that, but they don?t own the term cola. It was be suicide to rename their brand Cola. Same goes for simply renaming things with a lowercase ?i? while dropping the recognized and unique term they created.



    I bring up Coca-Cola as an example because the next argument that is sure to make its way into this thread is the word ?tunes? only referring to music. Well Coca-Cola/Coke no longer uses cocaine as an active ingredient but I hear requests for them to change their name.





    * Man do I miss Coke Classic
  • Reply 13 of 48
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post


    Since this is a tech blog, do you think you guys could shy away from the "web-based" term and maybe talk about the actual technical differences instead? I know it's still hypothetical at this stage but this whole area is a rich topic of conversation, or should be.



    Since iTunes could already be called "web-based" in it's current incarnation, "browser-based" would be more accurate, but better still would be a more technical discussion of what could actually change.



    I think you have a valid point in terms of being more accurate, but if we are talking about the app, not the store, I don?t think anyone would call that web-based.
  • Reply 14 of 48
    Would rather see a complete revamp of the iTunes concept instead of just tacking on extra features that don't really sound all that great.
  • Reply 15 of 48
    stelligentstelligent Posts: 2,680member
    There is a good article at http://www.ankleskater.com/pagemaker...20100826104700, questioning whether $99 for the new Apple TV makes sense. Good question!
  • Reply 16 of 48
    diddydiddy Posts: 282member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ascii View Post


    Because it will now exist outside iTunes?



    So? Office exists on the web as a standalone product from it's desktop equivalent and yet it shares its name. Lots of other products do this.





    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ascii View Post


    I think people associate any iAnything with Apple, and therefore quality. It is the iAnything brand they have been building up too.



    Not really. iStore has nothing to associate it with Apple - tons of products out there, not all of them having anything to do with Apple - some of them predating Apple's iProducts - at all.Apple tried to do the "we own everything with the letter i in front of it years ago and they stopped doing it. Apple only has a few select products that use the letter i and they almost all date back to the late 90's (when they started it). iPhone already existed as a brand before Apple. The only exception was iPad which is just an extension of the iPod branding of you ask me and even then the name was rumored long before it was announced. the word "iStore" does not have any brand recognition. iTunes does - people already associate it very strongly with their products. Why waste the effort to take a risk on a brand name that might never take off or worse, weaken a stronger brand?
  • Reply 17 of 48
    jmmxjmmx Posts: 341member
    When Apple offers the MobileMe mail to businesses it will be a direct attack on MS Exchange. Imagine, equivalent service at a fraction the cost!



    Nut they had better fix the Calendar app first!
  • Reply 18 of 48
    I just wish the Zune store worked on my MacBook Pro and iPod Touch/Nano. I'd love to just pay a flat fee for all the music to stream and store on my device.



    "Ownership" be damned. It's all electronic. Scarcity is a thing of the past in the new e-conomy.
  • Reply 19 of 48
    stelligentstelligent Posts: 2,680member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post


    Since this is a tech blog, do you think you guys could shy away from the "web-based" term and maybe talk about the actual technical differences instead? I know it's still hypothetical at this stage but this whole area is a rich topic of conversation, or should be.



    Since iTunes could already be called "web-based" in it's current incarnation, "browser-based" would be more accurate, but better still would be a more technical discussion of what could actually change.



    Actually, it's technically incorrect to call iTunes web-based. Just because an application communicates with a server thru the internet does not make it web-based. The web is not synonymous with the internet. In fact, the term "web-based" is more synonymous with "browser-based". But there's a bit of line-blurring there.
  • Reply 20 of 48
    diddydiddy Posts: 282member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by daving313 View Post


    "Ownership" be damned. It's all electronic. Scarcity is a thing of the past in the new e-conomy.



    Ownership works no matter what though - I like the idea of playing my content no matter if I can't afford to pay the rates a company charges or if they suddenly decide not to keep their servers active. Subscription services require DRM - something that I do not like.
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