Apple's iTunes music service is still the leader in the downloadable music space but now it wants in on the ever growing cloud computing business. Before it does that with iTunes, however, it needs to make some deals. Bloomberg is reporting via unnamed sources that Apple has done just that with three of the four major music labels.
According to the story, the deals would allow Apple to let its iTunes customers store their music purchases on Apple's cloud servers and then stream the music via the Web rather than the current method of letting customers download the music files directly to the hard drive of an iPhone, iPad or PC/Mac. The report says that Sony, EMI Group and Warner Music Group have all agreed to Apple's streaming music terms. Universal Music Group is the one holdout but the report says that Apple "is close to a deal" with that company as well. Apple will also have to make separate deals with music publishers for their streaming music rights.
Apple is building a massive $1 billion facility in North Carolina that will be the hub for its cloud computing services, including the streaming iTunes music service. There's no word yet on when this new service will launch or if there will be a separate fee involved. Officially, Apple is not commenting on these rumors. However, it is possible that a preview of the streaming music services will be shown at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference on June 6 in San Francisco.
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