Apple’s recently announced iCloud music service will let users “store” copies of their purchased music in the cloud and access it from any iOS device or Mac, DRM free. As for music that wasn’t purchased via iTunes, Apple will provide users cloud access to those songs for $24.99 a year.
There’s no doubt that Apple’s entire iCloud initiative is ambitious, but the music portion of the service, at least for the time being, will be US only.
Writing for The Telegraph, Emma Barnett relays that record labels in the UK are biding their time and want to see how Apple’s new iCloud service affects music downloads before hopping on board. More pertinent, we take it, is that negotiations with record labels across the pond are still in their early stages. Indeed, with Apple not securing record label support for iCloud’s music service until the n’th hour, it stands to reason that Cupertino simply didn’t have the time to negotiate with UK labels concurrently.
As a result, sources in the UK don’t anticipate Apple being able to strike a cloud-based music deal with UK labels until 2012.
Mark Mulligan, vice president and research director at Forrester Research, said: “Apple’s cloud music service will not launch in the UK until at least quarter one of 2012. These types of negotiations take a long time… For one thing the UK arms of all the major record labels are biding their time and waiting to see how the service affects download sales in the US before they sign up to anything.”
Waiting for Apple to “go international” so to speak is of course nothing new. Remember that it took Apple approximately 8 months before it rolled out its iTunes Music Store to countries in Europe. Par for the course, really.