Apple iTunes Cloud Service Roll Out To Be Limited At First

Sources that are speaking to cnet news are giving the impression that Apple’s cloud music service, which is supposed to be a marriage of Lala and iTunes, is not any where near ready. And that when it does roll out it may be limited in scope, and more movie centric than music centric.

It is very clear that Apple is closely watching Google’s moves in the music market place. And is making tentative moves to consolidate its position as the worlds digital content leader. But it is clear that Apple is eyeing an expansion of all of its own data services for its products and their users, they are not in a rush.

All of these services, be they related to financial transactions via your iPhone, more synergy and connectivity between iDevices, more music or more movies, all require something that is not ready yet. Apple’s huge server facility in the US, which is not online until 2011.

Apple realises that Google has a long way to go yet, before it can pull off a music service to rival iTunes. Or really bring a cohesive movie viewing / downloading service to your living room. And because of this Apple are taking their time to line up the right services for music, movies and TV. As well as watching to see which way Google ultimately goes, and probably flounders.

According to several sources, the work done at Lala shortly after Apple took it over was more in the direction of video than audio. And Apple has not made any major moves to obtain rights for a more flexible license for music or movie ownership, yet. But movie execs. have been speaking of a set of “digital shelves” that consumers can purchase content for. The idea being that they own the rights to view the content for life, and not a physical DVD. Rather like iPhone apps, Steam Games, or eBooks, which you move from device to device, but always keep the rights to use.

Needless to say the legal side of this will all take more time to work out than either the construction of Apple’s server farm, or for “The Hobbit” to be made into a movie.

So if Apple get an Apple TV to us this year (something I doubt), or roll out any kind of music service, expect it to be limited at first. But perhaps growing through the second half of 2011.

Does Apple’s rumoured plan sound appealing to you? Let us know your view in the comments…

[CNET]

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