Since iTunes match opened up to beta developers almost a week ago I have been waiting and wishing for it to be opened up again so I can experience what I consider a game changing service. Of course here in the UK I won’t be able to experience it for a while yet but I’m waiting.
So why do I think this is a game changer?
It’s simple. I love Spotify. I think that there is nothing better than a streaming service that lets you take your music where ever you go even if you don’t have an internet connection but the truth is I can’t interact with the songs on Spotify like on I can on iTunes.
I can’t use them on every device and most importantly I can’t keep those songs after my subscription is over. Not everyone can afford to pay $10/£10 a month every month and the free version of Spotify doesn’t let you take the songs with you. Let’s be clear I love Spotify. I have it on every one of my devices. But it just leaves you that tiniest bit less flexible than owning those music files yourself.
That is what iTunes match gives us. We own those files. We can cancel the subscription but still keep the songs. In a less than perfect world. It’s perfect.
Lots of the media has talked about how iTunes match will legitimise songs that weren’t purchased but the truth is those songs that are of questionable sourcing will already be MP3 files. And you would already be able to take those on any device anywhere so that isn’t even an issue.
So what about those songs that are super low quality that will get traded up to a nice shiny high quality version? Let’s be honest you probably never listen to those anyway. They are the songs you simply haven’t got around to deleting yet.
So iTunes match won’t encourage piracy. It won’t hurt the music industry. It will help them because they are getting a percentage of that extra $25 a year that the service costs in the US.
All that iTunes match brings is the ease that Apple always brings us as you won’t have to upload all your songs over several days. It will be quick. It will be easy. And if you log yourself into a friends device you can share your songs (for up to 10 devices). You can even convert them from AAC to MP3 as they are owned by you.
You can be sure the reason iTunes match temporarily shut its doors a day after the beta launched was because it isn’t easy to use yet and it isn’t an Apple product yet but when they do open officially – then it will be a game changer.