iTunes Music Store

Forging ahead despite the cell carriers' chilly reception to the whole iTunes phone concept, Apple plans to unleash its iTunes software for mobile phone by June. The software, in development since last year, is currently named iTunes Mobile 1.0. The much-delayed Motorola iTunes phone is also still slated for release in the second half of this year, which perhaps reflects Apple's belief that they we will be able to get the carriers to come to their senses by then. At the moment, Verizon, Cingular and Sprint all plan to launch music download services at $2 to $3 a pop to deliver tunes over the air to customers they believe are 2 to 3 times as desperate to get a track "immediately" over a slow cell connection as to wait to get home and do it over broadband for $1 via their computers. The cell carriers, by continually trying to prevent that linkage between phone and PC for file transfer, seem to be completely missing the point — which is that if anyone is going to even be willing to shell out $3 a track to pull down a song over their network, they're still going to want to integrate that music with the library they already have spent time cultivating on their computer at home. How many consumers are really going to jump at the chance to invest in yet another little walled garden of (even more expensive) music that doesn't transfer to any of the other devices they're already using?

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