Streaming and subscriptions coming to Apple’s iPod?

“Apple hasn’t released an updated iPod since October 2005 and anticipation is building as the market waits for the next development from the industry leader in portable music players,” Jason D. O’Grady blogs for ZDNet.

“In a previous post I mentioned a few reasons why I don’t want a wireless iPod – mostly because of the battery life penalty and poor sound quality of Bluetooth headphones. A reader mentioned a good application for wireless in an iPod that I neglected to mention in the article: streaming,” O’Grady writes. “The theory is that a WiFi-equipped iPod would be able to stream music from Internet radio stations and even purchase and download songs Over The Air (OTA) from the iTunes Music Store. The problem with streaming is that it’s only as good as the WiFi access point that you’re connected to.”

O’Grady writes, “A wireless iPod could also be the forbearer to a new subscription version of the iTMS where subscribers could download all the music they want for a flat fee per month.”

Full article here.

Related articles:
Report: Apple to bring out Bluetooth adapter for iPods – August 25, 2006
Hints of new products in the air as Apple’s iPod season looms – August 24, 2006
Apple patent filing shows wireless iPod sync, docking station – August 16, 2006
New iPod with ‘wireless capabilities’ coming soon? – August 16, 2006
Apple CEO Steve Jobs talks up much-rumored ‘iPhone’ iPod mobile phone – August 11, 2006


  1. Ah, yes, Jason O’Grady, that hyper-accurate sage and oracle of all Mac rumors. Remember folks, Jason is never wrong. Okay, well, sometimes his predictions are a bit off. And sure, he’s missed the mark a few times. Okay, on second thought, he’s been wrong a lot. But hey, if you read it on the internet, it MUST be right, yes?

    Why does this guy get the attention he does?

    There’s nothing to see here, folks. Move along. It’s not news, just noise.

  2. You know, subscription could be great for things you’d really only listen to once. I’d love to see subscriptions for Audiobooks for example.

    What about a subscription where you try it out for a month, if you like it you buy it and get a credit?

  3. Subscriptions would be a great way to drive sales. I like to explore music but hate paying for junk that I only listen to once. I could then try out new music with a subscription, and buy the ones I want to keep.

  4. Out of desperation a short time ago, i subscribed to Napster for a week or so. I went in thinking subscription-based music was a dumb idea. I came out not so sure. It’s really great to be able to listen to an entire album before buying it. And it also frees you up to listen to stuff that you would probably never buy unless you knew it was good–and therefore you might actually find new music you like that you never would have found otherwise.

    Napster is really annoying in that you can’t always listen to every album without buying it first, but it didn’t totally suck. So, if iTMS had a subscription option, I’d check it out for sure.

  5. I’ll argue the contarypoint – subscriptions have their place.

    Just as in the past you used radio, etc. to cue you into new music you later bought, subscriptions can be the new radio.

    I’d pay for a subscription to listen to new music, and then buy what I like. Within the iTunes model, there are all sorts of mechanisms for suggestions, and that’s great.

    There is no way I’m going to buy something I haven’t heard before. So the lack of subscriptions limits the appeal of the iTMS to me.

  6. I’d like the option to subscribe to a movie or TV service. I don’t really like the idea of owning movies anymore since media formats keep changing.

    Sheesh it’s only been what 5yrs since DVDs took off?

    So constantly upgrading my movie collection only lines the studio’s pockets with my $$$.

    What’s next true 3D, oops now my my media is slated for the garage sale

    (hmmm,≈ 25yrs for VHS, ≈ 5yrs DVD, I hope the next cycle isn’t any shorter)

  7. Hang on…

    If the next iPod was going to be wireless compatible, wouldn’t it have already been “outed” by the need to submit it to FCC scrutiny, in the same way that the MS/Toshiba “Zune” was earlier this month?

  8. People rent their apartments or homes, they rent or lease vehicles and campers, they even rent furniture and lease electronic devices.

    People subscribe to cable, satellite and telephone line TV service, cell phone, and cable and land line home phone service, DVD movie service, satellite radio service and internet access over phone lines, cable, DSL lines and even WiFi access points.

    If people own their own home, when you think about it, they use a subscription like service for sewer access, garbage pick up and utilities such as water, electricity and natural gas or stove oil. There are also pool services, lawn services, snow shoveling services, dog walking services, maid services and alarm services that use a subscription like format.

    People subscribe to newspapers and magazines either electronically or via hard copy. There are also podcasts, some of which have paid subscriptions.

    People, in North America at least, are used to monthly payments for things they use everyday. What’s another $10 per month?

    Yes, people with large music collections, CD, electronic or otherwise will continue to buy their music.

    However, today’s kids do not have large music collections. Today’s kids do not care how they spent their parent’s money. A monthly subscription shuts them up and it is cheaper for parents in the long run. Kids don’t stay at home forever.

    Today’s kids will soon be trained to make monthly payments.

    The rest of us with significant music collections will eventually die off.

    Subscription will, sooner or later, kill off buy the rights to listen. Maybe not in my lifetime, but it will happen.

  9. Apple, please release a new iPod soon. I don’t care if it’s a video iPod, a RAM-bumped nano, or just the same iPod we have now in a new color. Just release something for God’s sake! It’s the only way to stop these frantic, insane, desperate journalists from vomiting speculation all over the net!

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