Japanese iTMS in 2005?

iTunes Music Store

As we're well aware, the Japanese put us Yanks to shame in many areas of technology early adoption, but not so in the realm of digital music downloads. Apparently, labels in Japan are even more ridiculously stalwart about continuing to give primacy to the (arguably) dying medium of the compact disc than labels here, which has been one of the major holdups in getting the Japanese iTunes Music Store up and running. However, signs made by Yoshiaki Sakito, Apple Japan's president, point to some progress being made, and an optimistic goal of having the iTMS Japan open for business by the end of 2005. Apple has now managed to assuage the labels that their DRM technology is not "weak," which last year was an even larger stumbling block than issues of pricing and who will get what percentage of the cut — which are the not so small details that remain to be ironed out before the Japanese will see a launch.