According to “numerous industry sources”, online retailer Amazon is negotiating deals that will soon enable it to match most of the music features offered by Apple’s iCloud.
Amazon shocked the industry by launching its Cloud Drive and Cloud Player last year without necessary licenses from the top labels.
They are now reportedly close to striking license deals that will let them offer a scan-and-match service akin to iTunes Match…
CNET‘s Greg Sandoval scooped the story:
Amazon already has reached agreements with Universal Music Group and EMI and is in the later stages of negotiations with the other two major record companies, Sony Music Entertainment and Warner Music Group, the sources said. Amazon could announce the deals within weeks.
Sandoval stopped short of specifying what the deal might entail and wouldn’t go beyond saying that Amazon may “soon be able to match many of the features found at Apple’s iCloud”, which reportedly includes the ability to quickly expand the users’s music library in the cloud by way of scan-and-matching, bypassing tedious uploading.
Amazon couldn’t offer a similar service because it involves creating and delivering copies of music to users who didn’t technically buy them. Doing so requires a license, say the labels; otherwise, they say, such copies violate their copyrights.
Conspicuously enough, Amazon finally released a version of its Cloud Player for the iPhone yesterday. It’s interesting that the app lets you both stream or download songs to your device. The app surfaced just as Spotify unveiled its native iPad app last month.
At the same time, it appears that Apple has tweaked iTunes Match in iOS 6 to also allow users to chose whether they want to stream individual songs or download an entire album to their device permanently.
This possibly could indicate that Apple is readying a subscription-based streaming service of its own.
How much would you be willing to pay per month for unlimited streaming of all songs available on the iTunes Store?