Former MP3.com CEO: Apple’s secret cloud strategy and why Lala is critical

Apple Online Store“For years there’s been speculation that Apple would supplement their $1/song (now $1.29) iTunes business with a monthly subscription service, but their upcoming plans are quite different and once again are positioning them to lead the digital music industry into a new era,” Michael Robertson [founder and former CEO of MP3.com and currently the CEO of music locker company MP3tunes] writes fro TechCrunch.

“Leveraging their ubiquitous iTunes software Apple plans to upgrade their users almost overnight to a cloud music service in an ambitious move to beat Amazon and others to a cloud music service,” Robertson writes. “Record labels are wary to give Apple even greater dominance which is why Apple’s new strategy is designed to sidestep new licenses from the major labels.”

“After talking to a wide variety of insider sources it’s clear there is no upcoming Apple subscription service and Apple has far different plans… An upcoming major revision of iTunes will copy each user’s catalog to the net making it available from any browser or net connected ipod/touch/tablet. The Lala upload technology will be bundled into a future iTunes upgrade which will automatically be installed for the 100+ million itunes users with a simple “An upgrade is available…” notification dialog box. After installation iTunes will push in the background their entire media library to their personal mobile iTunes area,” Robertson writes. “Once loaded, users will be able to navigate and play their music, videos and playlists from their personal URL using a browser based iTunes experience.”

Robertson writes, “Apple will link the tens of millions of previously sold iPods, Touches, AppleTV and iTablets to mobile iTunes giving users seamless playback of their media from a wide range of Apple branded devices.”

Read the full article – recommended – here.

32 Comments

  1. this makes no sense. how could people upload dozens (hundreds) of GBs of data into a cloud?

    what makes more sense, is any purchase on iTunes is stored on the cloud for playback on any internet connected device. this is much different from the article is suggesting.

  2. I hope it’s an only option and we can still do local storage. That would seem like a great idea back when iPhones and iPod touches were limited to 8gb and 16gb. Now we have a 32gb iPhone with a 64gb iPhone 4thGen probable in a few months. We also have the 32gb/64gb iPod touch (though I’m not sure we’ll see a doubling to 128gb in 2010). I have more than enough memory and don’t really need the cloud.

  3. @mike g…

    I know this, some guy from the early 2000s finally got in front of a Microphone by trying to ‘spoil’ the Apple announcement.

    Renting Music is weak, but Renting Movies, etc, could be very cool. Crazy bandwidth tho.

  4. Ed,

    That’s smart, and a lot like I’d expect Apple to do. Anything you own that’s available on iTunes could then be streamed to your music device via the web. Stuff you own that isn’t would then be stored locally.

    And no more downloading new purchases, which would limit Apple’s costs big time.

    Good job!

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