Apple's iTunes Match beta supports streaming music playback

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Comments

  • Reply 21 of 33
    I still don't see how streaming will be that helpful on a daily basis, but I can see it being useful occasionally. I'm certainly not going to be streaming my music at work all day long. If I'm at home, the need for streaming falls even more. It's a cool feature though. I'm not going to knock it for being there.



    Most exciting is the possibility of streaming video content. That's something I would definitely cheer about. The files are so large and require too much from a user in terms of storage and backup. My only concern there is data caps. Most likely I'd only ever stream video while on wi-fi to get around that little snag.



    Both the article and the IGM videos said iTunes Match worked with your entire music library, even things not purchased from iTunes. Great, but neither explained how this works. I'm assuming that means uploading of your music to the cloud and paying for extra storage. Personally, I think I'd have to pay quite a bit to store all my non-iTunes purchased music and I don't yet know if I'd stream it all that much anyway. I mean my 120GB iPod holds it all and then some.



    My biggest question with all of this is the same as it's been - quality. Will I be able to download (and keep) 256 kbps versions of the old iTunes songs I bought (or ripped) at 128 kbps with iTunes Match? Before this streaming revelation it certainly seemed that way. Now I'm not so sure. The way it's described in the video is that you have a 128 kbps file on your Mac, but can stream a 256 kbps to your iPhone. If you then download that song with iTunes match, you get the 256 kpbs version from the iTunes Store serves right? Can that higher bit-rate song then be synched to your Macs iTunes library? If so then I'll jump on board with great excitement. Paying a one-time fee of $25 to upgrade the quality of all my 128 kbps iTunes purchased (and maybe even ripped) songs (8,052 total) is a steal!
  • Reply 22 of 33
    Spotify is already here and is poised to upend the market. I would not be overly sanguine about iTunes' ongoing dominance, even though I think iTunes is very well done indeed.
  • Reply 23 of 33
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Galley View Post


    What about those of us with 50,000 tracks in our library? Who determines which 25,000 are eligible for the Match service?



    uh-oh. Cult of mac has a news bit that if you have more than 25K songs, you get no syncing at all. That is of course right now for beta testing. Consumer implementation can be different once it comes out.
  • Reply 24 of 33
    mennomenno Posts: 854member
    Question if anyone is in the beta here and testing it:



    How does it handle caching? What I mean is on your iOS device, how can you choose which songs to have locally (for offline playback)? That's one of the biggest issues I've found when it comes to streaming/download combinations is that with most services (I'm looking at you Subsonic) it's a PITA to manage.



    I'm using Spotify right now, and they let you cache specific playlists. Not perfect, but not horrible. I like like the concept of Pinning that Google Music does, it seems to be the most "intuitive" so far, but I'm curious how it will work on iOS devices.



    That being said, this is a welcome update. Streaming doesn't make sense all the time, but for those of us with massive music collections, it's a lot better than trying to manage which songs you want to put on your "tiny" phone storage.



    Edit.. Nevermind. IT seems like the Streaming is "Listen while we download" it: http://allthingsd.com/20110830/apple...snt-streaming/



    That's sad I'm hoping Apple gives an easy way to clean out music you downloaded this way.
  • Reply 25 of 33
    christophbchristophb Posts: 1,462member
    AT&T is gonna be pissed about all those grandfathered unlimited plans - my iPhone and iPad included.
  • Reply 26 of 33
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ChristophB View Post


    AT&T is gonna be pissed about all those grandfathered unlimited plans - my iPhone and iPad included.



    Are you kidding? They'll just terminate your grandfatheredness. Won't even bat an eye.
  • Reply 27 of 33
    moxommoxom Posts: 326member
    At least the guy posting the video has great taste in music - RADIOHEAD rule!!
  • Reply 28 of 33
    christophbchristophb Posts: 1,462member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


    Are you kidding? They'll just terminate your grandfatheredness. Won't even bat an eye.



    Purely opinion, I reckon they'll do that when I go LTE. I'm sure there's already small print about "3G" and "Edge" to back up their play.
  • Reply 29 of 33
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by KingKuei View Post


    Thinking about this and researching a little more, I realized that Apple has made it a point to eliminate FairPlay DRM from the iTunes store. Then I found this article from arstechnica:



    http://arstechnica.com/apple/news/20...s-answered.ars



    As they point out, there doesn't appear to be any mechanism for Apple to determine if a track in your library was pirated or ripped from your own CD. If that's the case, and you are allowed to download tracks to your computer and physically store them on the hard drive, then it does indeed seem like "amnesty for pirates of 25,000 songs".



    Here's what we know:

    Apple knows for sure which songs in your library you've actually purchased from iTunes, and (by a process of elimination) which songs must have come from "somewhere else". It cannot tell, though, where that "somewhere else" is.



    The free iCloud service will allow you to automatically synch all the original iTunes purchases onto every new device as you acquire it, and it will also allow you to keep only a small portion of your original iTunes purchases on a small-capacity device, and switch them up any time you want. This portion (the free portion) only applies to music that's definitively been purchased through iTunes.



    The premium iCloud "music match" service will work with all the songs in the "somewhere else" category. First of all, it will attempt to match those songs with editions that already exist in the iTunes store -- if so, the iTunes master copy will be fed to the cloud, and you'll be able to synch the song from the iTunes store onto all your devices. If it is not found in the iTunes store, then your local copy will be uploaded to the cloud, and used to synch with all your devices. As long as you keep your subscription up, all that "somewhere else" content will behave, for all intents and purposes, the same as the iTunes purchases -- you can use the cloud to sync the sings with all your devices.



    And now for the Speculation:

    However, as soon as you allow the premium service to lapse, all your existing the "somewhere else" songs that have already been synced to your devices will stay there. But, if you ever allow those songs to be deleted form your devices (for example, to make space for other music) you will no longer be able to use the cloud to re-sync those songs back onto the device in the future. At that point, you'd have to use a USB tethered sync to get those songs back on the device, exactly the same as you always used to do for all songs back before iCloud existed.
  • Reply 30 of 33
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post


    I'd love to know that too. I'm guessing you would not be able to play f you didn't renew. Otherwise it would be a one time fee to legitimize 25,000 songs from Napster for many. I don't see the music industry being that generous some how.



    From what I've seen, looks like downloaded files have no DRM. They can be copied to other machines and other devices and play fine, so I'm not sure how Apple would get them to self destruct at the end of the year. Of course you won't be able to download them again if you cancel Match, but it does look like you'll have the downloaded files on your drive and can back them up as much as you'd like.
  • Reply 31 of 33
    philboogiephilboogie Posts: 7,498member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Menno View Post


    IT seems like the Streaming is "Listen while we download" it: http://allthingsd.com/20110830/apple...snt-streaming/



    That's sad I'm hoping Apple gives an easy way to clean out music you downloaded this way.



    Personally I like this. It will allow me to choose not stream over my 3G internet connection, but rather 'stream to my cache' when I'm on WiFi. And then listen to the music when I want. I hope this will be the case once it gets out of beta.



    Cheers,

    PhilBoogie
  • Reply 32 of 33
    philboogiephilboogie Posts: 7,498member
    The question to me is: will the non-iTunes music from users be synced a-la Dropbox; if a track is already on iCloud will we need to upload the track regardless? Will it be synced if the filename is different?
  • Reply 33 of 33
    mennomenno Posts: 854member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post


    Personally I like this. It will allow me to choose not stream over my 3G internet connection, but rather 'stream to my cache' when I'm on WiFi. And then listen to the music when I want. I hope this will be the case once it gets out of beta.



    Cheers,

    PhilBoogie



    I don't think we can go to pure streaming either. But, take Google Music for example. How it works is that you can stream the entire library you have uploaded on up to 8 devices (as opposed to 10 with iTunes). The app on your phone will automatically cache recently listened to songs (I think will be similar to what apple is doing, if I'm reading the article right), so that you can listen to that music offline as well. But Google Music also offers something they call "pinning" where you can select to download albums, artists, playlists etc to your phone for offline preemptively, like downloading it from the cloud with icloud. The nice thing though, is that you can "un-pin" those things from directly inside the music app (as opposed to using a file manager like you have to on subsonic). If you pin a playlist and add to it from your computer or another device, the system will automatically sync that pinning across devices, making sure your offline playlist has every song available.



    Spotify gives you the ability to "toggle" offline playback for playlists, and you can untoggle them as well, directly in the app. It's not perfect, but it's pretty close to what Google's doing.



    I wonder how Apple will solve the problem. I'm sure they'll come up with something, I'm just curious to see what it is.
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