Why can't we American buy & download iTunes from UK or elsewhere?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by jalowe1957, Apr 30, 2005.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Apr 27, 2005
    Has anyone in the U.S. ever tried to pruchase and download iTunes from the UK?

    There's a lot of Motown tracks not available in the U.S. iTunes store that are available at their UK counterpart that I want to buy and download, and there are those across the sea who would like to purchase and download tracks from the U.S. iTunes store.

    Can anyone offer some suggestions on this? :mad:
  2. macrumors 65816

    wrc fan

    Jan 19, 2003
    In a world where LPs are made like pancakes
    Same reason as you can't buy a DVD in the UK and play it in a DVD player in the US (well besides the obvious PAL and NTSC differences). Meaning that it's stupid, but it's not up to Apple to decide.
  3. Moderator


    Staff Member

    Dec 7, 2002
    Whakatane, New Zealand
    But you can buy an audio CD from the UK and play it in the US.
  4. macrumors 65816

    wrc fan

    Jan 19, 2003
    In a world where LPs are made like pancakes
    shhh! don't let the record companies know! :rolleyes:

    probably the only reason for that is because they didn't think of it when that technology was being introduced. just my guess.
  5. macrumors 68020

    Mar 30, 2004
    For me this is the most disappointing thing about iTunes. :(

    I listen to a lot of German and Japanese music... imports are so expensive. *sigh*
  6. macrumors 6502a


    Jul 7, 2004
    Blame the rediculously big headed oversized egoed, we know exactly how we want people to use and enjoy music record labels. I don't think I have ever seen an industry so out of touch with their customers.........
  7. macrumors 65816


    Feb 27, 2003
    Durham, UK
    Aw come of it! The rest of the world had to wait at least a year and a half before even getting the iTunes music store! I guess its all due to liscencing, so just e-mail the record company you want on the store and see if consumer pressure works. Or get a credit card with a UK postal address.
  8. macrumors newbie

    May 22, 2005
    I was wondering the same thing. Almost all of the music I want to buy is in the Uk store. I was thinking about just setting up another account for the UK store and then using my same credit card,but I'm not sure if that would work because of the currency. Does anyone know if Itunes could convert the amount to $$ ? There has got to be some way around it.:confused:
  9. macrumors 65816

    Mar 14, 2004
    The problem is not the currency, you can pay in foreign currencies with a CC. (The amount will be converted to USD and your card will be charged accordingly) Like someone else said, if you want to buy songs from the UK store, you need a British CC and a UK billing address. The same applies to any other store.
  10. macrumors 6502a


    Dec 11, 2004
    The record companies here are having a crackdown on CD importing from outside the EU. They're looking at one particular company who was importing from Hong Kong and forced them to change that, and they're looking at Amazon and Play. You can buy legally from inside the EU, which is why Apple Europe are being investigated by the EU trade commission for restriction of trade but outside is a bit of a grey area. Bottom line is - it's not Apple - they're just working within the restrictions imposed on them by the record labels.
  11. macrumors newbie

    May 22, 2005
    Well thanks for the info. That sucks though :( I guess I'll just have to wait until the US iTunes starts putting out a better selection. ;)
  12. mpw

    Jun 18, 2004
    I had an Apple account with a British credit card but couldn't buy because of my non-UK address. It would seem however that the address is checked as UK only by the ZIP code, I entered the London Regent Street AppleStore ZIP code as mentioned on their website and was immediately able to download without a problem.
  13. mpw

    Jun 18, 2004
    Also there must be problems where an artist is on different labels on the left and right of the Atlantic.
  14. macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location
    ^^I can't believe it took this long for someone to mention the different labels across the Atlantic. A band is probably signed to a US label, and a label back in the UK. Probably different labels, but even if they were the same label, it would probably be a different deal, as the music industry in the UK is different.

    You need a UK credit card and address. Just type in any Post Code (ie: postal code/zip code), and use a UK credit card. I'm not sure if they check to see if the mailing address attached to your credit card is a UK address or not. So even if you're from the UK and have a Lloyds TSB or Barclays credit card, and you live in the USA, you may still not be able to buy music from iTMS using your Lloyds credit card if you changed the billing address to an American address. But since you're not actually buying a physical product that needs to be shipped, they probably don't check because they don't care.
  15. macrumors 6502

    Sep 19, 2002
    Auburn, AL
    Would it be possible to set up a sort of importing system within iTunes?

    By that I mean, can you transfer ownership of songs like you can *any* *other* form of media? If that were to be possible, then we could have someone import songs from the UK for us, and then resell those, say, with a 1-10¢ overcharge. It'd still be cheaper than importing the CDs.
  16. Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    The problem is that imported CDs are grey market -- officially, they are not exactly legal per se. When you buy a CD in Japan, you don't buy unlimited rights to the contents -- you buy specific use rights. And those use rights do not clearly include the right to transfer the CD to a US citizen living in the US and listening to the CD on US equipment. It is at the very least, rarely enforced. The net result is that it's grey -- the volumes are low enough and the benefits outweigh the harms, so in most industries where there is no intention to release the product locally, it is just ignored.

    Video games are an interesting example. Grey-marketing of Japanese language games to the US by companies like NCSX is traditionally a "look the other way" issue with the console / game mfr'ers, but there have been sting operations for large-scale imports of games between two countries where the games are sold by the manufacturer in both countries (and the importing is done to try to cost undercut). That *is* viewed as illegal and is acted on....

    So it's all a very confusing thing legally.

    But if you take a Japanese pop song, and agree that it is unlikely that Sony will ever release the disc in the US, then the differential cost of selling iTunes the US sales rights to Sony are very low. You'd think that eventually this kind of argument would make it easier for stores like iTMS to buy international rights, but who knows? The legal waters are very murky.
  17. macrumors 68030

    Oct 24, 2003
    The Amalgamated States of Central North America
    I'm a dual citizen living in the US and was almost thinking of trying to get a swedish credit card so i could get some of my favorites from the Sweden store, but I saw they don't have much actual Swedish music anyway. I cant see anything that would prevent you from buying from them if you had a card from that country.
  18. macrumors newbie

    May 25, 2003

    Ah, I have to call ******** on that one. I make purchases from overseas stores using my credit card all of the time. This is probably just another example of the music industry making arbitrary, asinine, out-of-touch decisions.

  19. macrumors G3


    May 25, 2004
    i don't understand why you can't....I think they should allow this but maybe just tax a tad more, like 10 cents or something... :rolleyes:

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