Apple close to offering Beatles music via iTunes Store

“Apple is close to signing an exclusive deal with The Beatles to put its music on iTunes, despite the troubled legal history between the two,” Rob Jones reports for Personal Computer World.

“If signed, this would be a major coup for Apple, as The Beatles have to date refused to let any online music store offer legal downloads of their songs,” Jones reports. “It could also see the end of legal wrangles stemming from the fact that the Beatles set up a company called Apple Corps, which pre-dates the computer company.”

Jones reports, “The Beatles’ music is among the most popular in the world for illegal downloads, so if a deal is struck, would generate huge revenues for Apple. It would also boost iPod sales as well as the number of downloads through iTunes.”

Jones reports, “According to Fortune, David Munns, head of EMI North America, has said the back catalogue would be available for legal downloads soon, and it is believed Apple exec Steve Jobs is close to getting a time-limited exclusive deal, preventing other music sites from initially being able to offer The Beatles songs online. Any deal struck with iTunes would be worth tens of millions of dollars, it said.”

Full article here.

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35 Comments

  1. With the Beatles/iTunes stories and the iPhone stories, how many of them are just making guesses based on other stories that are based on guesses? It’s like the old “telephone” game, where one person passes on to the next person. Where did it start? How do we know that it was not pulled from the rectum of some analyst?

    I’ll wait to hear more proof positive on these types of stories.

  2. This will add the the clout of itunes and Apple in the music industry.
    whether or not you like the Beatles doesn’t matter.
    This will be big news and Apple is right in the middle of it.
    If Microsoft got the deal first, it would suck for Apple.

  3. I heard on a PodCast (can’t recall which) that the British copyright laws changed (or are about to) and limit the length before things go into the public domain. The Beatles stuff is old and now has a limited time to make hay before it’s all public, Could have something to do with the sudden movement on the Beatles front.

  4. Oooh. This could make for some nice promotions for the Christmas season.

    If they can roll it out in time.

    How about “The Compleat Compleat Beatles Digital” catalog?

    All the 13 or so original British albums, the weird thing they did a few years ago with John’s tapes. The even weirder “Love” thing they are promoting now. All sorts of extras etc.

    What would that cost? Like $250 or more?

    They could sell it as a pre-order even. With a gift card. You know how many, guessing here, but I bet I’m right, wives would buy that for their Beatle-geek husbands? Along with a new iPod.

    Big cash money for bits that would get downloaded over a few weeks.

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