Apple Extends iTunes Song Previews, Thumbs Nose At Record Labels

This image described by Apple, iTunes, song previews, ItunesLogoTransparent-2
While nobody was looking, Apple changed its internal rules regarding song previews on iTunes.  Originally, you could only get 30 seconds worth of preview to decide whether or not to buy it.  Now, you can get a full 90 seconds of "try before you buy," but only if the tune in question is more than 150 seconds (i.e. 2 minutes 30) in length.  Under that, it's still the half-minute tease.

While this may be a bit closer to heaven for paying customers, it's more like hell on earth for the record labels, especially after they got the following notice from the House of Jobs announcing the preview-time change:

This image described by Apple, iTunes, song previews, 210604-90_second_samples
In short, Apple is saying "like it or lump it."  The only way the labels can say no to this policy change is to pull their content entirely.

It's entirely possible that the next step is to offer full-song streams — in which case, the fabled "iTunes cloud" may finally come into existence…

[Via Techcrunch and MacRumors]

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