Bloomberg is reporting that Apple is in negotiations with music labels to allow customers to redownload previously purchased music from the iTunes Store an unlimited number of times to any devices a customer may own that is tied to a specific iTunes Store account. The report also claims that a deal could be met by […]
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Apple Negotiating with Music Labels for Unlimited Music Redownloads?

CloudComputing-150x150.jpgBloomberg is reporting that Apple is in negotiations with music labels to allow customers to redownload previously purchased music from the iTunes Store an unlimited number of times to any devices a customer may own that is tied to a specific iTunes Store account. The report also claims that a deal could be met by the middle of this year, and that such an agreemnt could allow Apple to offer server-side “digital lockers”, allowing customers to access their content from any number of registered devices.
Here’s an excerpt:

Apple Inc. (AAPL) is in talks with record companies to give iTunes customers easier access to music they’ve purchased across multiple devices, said three people with knowledge of the plans.

Apple is negotiating with music companies including Vivendi SA (VIV)’s Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, Warner Music Group Corp. (WMG) and EMI Group Ltd., said the people, who asked for anonymity because the talks are private. An agreement may be announced by midyear, two of the people said.

It goes without saying that such a service would act as a backup for purchased content, while also allowing customers to, say, purchase a song one place, and then download it again on their, for instance, iPad at another time.

Bloomberg also ties in their report with previous reports claiming that this new feature will be a part of a MobileMe overhaul which is expected to drop the $99/year price tag and be made free to the general public.
Another excerpt:

The new download policy is among several service changes Apple is exploring. The company has also weighed plans to overhaul its MobileMe service for storing pictures, videos and other content online this year, one of the people said.

Under one plan for MobileMe, the service that now costs at least $99 a year would become free. Users could store photos, contacts, e-mail and other content on Apple’s servers, one person said. The content would be accessible through any wireless connection.

Add this to the mounting reports of a MobileMe overhaul that will make the service free to everyone, while storing their content in the cloud. It would also explain how Apple is able to offer new Mac OS X Lion features such as the new “Safe Deposit Box.”

All of this is congealing into one coherent picture, with cloud-based services at the core of Apple strategy going forward.

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