Apple (finally) releases iTunes Match to U.S. users

Apple (finally) releases iTunes Match to U.S. users

Summary: Apple has finally released iTunes Match, weeks after iOS 5 and the iPhone 4S were announced and released.

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Apple has, after a long wait and numerous delays, released iTunes Match today, a feature made available as part of its 'iTunes in the Cloud' offering.

The Cupertino-based technology giant has released iTunes 10.5.1 to the public, which houses the iTunes Match software.

(Source: Apple/CNET)

iTunes Match determines which songs in your collection and libraries are in the iTunes Store, including ripped-CDs and pirated music, and replaces any content which is found to have better audio quality. iTunes currently downloads music at 256Kbps AAC quality, and music download is DRM-free, allowing you to take your music to any music device, laptop or smartphone.

But even though the service is now available to the public, Apple is still labelling iTunes Match as a 'beta' product, meaning bugs may still be present.

Better late than never, iTunes Match has struggled with service difficulties, missed deadlines and expiring software for testing developers. Apple had initially hoped to have the service out by mid-to-late October, but missed its deadline, leaving many users of then-unreleased iTunes 10.5.1 with an expired version of the software.

iTunes Match is not yet available outside the United States, however, with the UK and European markets at an indefinite hiatus. It is believed that the music-matching service may be released in Europe early next year, or even in time for the Christmas period.

The service costs $24.99 a year, which is not a bad price to pay to 'legitimise' your pirate music collection.

iTunes Match is part of iTunes, and is available for both Mac and Windows users. Mac users can update the software from the 'Software Update' feature, while Windows users can update from the iTunes website or within iTunes itself.

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Topics: iPhone, Apple, Hardware, Mobility, Operating Systems

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9 comments
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  • RE: Apple (finally) releases iTunes Match to U.S. users

    Can somebody actually test this and see if it actually does legitimize pirated music? Or are there at least a couple of blocks preventing this?
    Aerowind
    • RE: Apple (finally) releases iTunes Match to U.S. users

      @Aerowind I don't think it works that way. I am not convinced you can download back your music. Stream yes but say your HD is wiped at home - I have yet to read where you can download your music back to your "new" HD.
      Bodazapha
  • Apple is charging for a beta product?

    Is that correct? That's a neat racket if you can get away with it. You don't have to offer any support because it is a beta product but you still collect the full subscription amount.
    toddybottom
  • Wow, that kinda stinks

    And I'm totally unimpressed.
    ScorpioBlue
    • RE: Apple (finally) releases iTunes Match to U.S. users

      @ScorpioBlue And why do you feel that way? Well other than the fact that this is Apple anyhow.
      athynz
      • RE: Apple (finally) releases iTunes Match to U.S. users

        @Pete "athynz" Athens
        That fact that it changes the music file that I legitimately ripped from store bought CDs and treats it the same as "pirated music". It's not pirated music. I bought it in CD form.

        [i]Tunes Match determines which songs in your collection and libraries are in the iTunes Store, including ripped-CDs and pirated music, [b]and replaces any content which is found to have better audio quality.[/b]
        ScorpioBlue
    • RE: Apple (finally) releases iTunes Match to U.S. users

      @ScorpioBlue you are the one to say that it's treating pirated music as legitimately bought music. Apple does not enter in these considerations. You have music on your HD, then you are able to listen to this in the Cloud. That's as simple as that. It's a fine way to have your music in the cloud and have it always available while not having to upload it yourself. <br><br>I presume that you don't consider the music you ripped on your own CDs and put on an iPod as pirated music, because it's exactly the same thing, except it is not on an iPod.
      atari_z
      • RE: Apple (finally) releases iTunes Match to U.S. users

        [i]I presume that you don't consider the music you ripped on your own CDs and put on an iPod as pirated music, because it's exactly the same thing, except it is not on an iPod.[/i]

        That's not pirated music, pal. I bought it fair & square and have been ripping CDs into digital form for years. It's called [i]"fair use"[/i] and I'll be dammed if I pay for the same song again just because it's in a different format.
        ScorpioBlue
  • RE: Apple (finally) releases iTunes Match to U.S. users

    So, it will take all my ripped CD's and replace them with "better" versions from iTunes, so now NONE of my music will play on a non Apple product. What an improvement.
    ILoveHam