iTMS Expansions - Canada & Japan?

MacRumors

macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
7,457
8,520
While we have previously rumored the expansion of the iTMS into Canada on November 26, one of several countries that remains without its own store is Japan. An article on Cnet points to a release of a localized store by March 2005, with a 100,000 track catalog emphasizing on Japanese music. Once released, the Japanese iTMS is expected to be the largest music download service available in that country.

Localized versions of the iTMS are now available in the US, Germany, France, the UK, Austria, Belgium, Finland, Greece, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, and Spain.
 

MrMacMan

macrumors 604
Jul 4, 2001
7,002
11
1 Block away from NYC.
Maybe? Now? Soon?

Well...

If it isn't this rumor again.


Lets hope it holds water this time.

We have heard how many... many many many rumors on Europe and Canada... now its Japan along with it.

I can only help iTMS expands to cover my norther neighbor... and my favoriate source for good Cartoon Programing.

hehe.
--MrMacMan
 

Doctor Q

Administrator
Staff member
Sep 19, 2002
36,052
3,276
Los Angeles
Does anybody have stats on the size of the brick-and-mortar music store business (e.g., retail CD sales) in Japan compared to the U.S. and other countries? That might be an indicator of Apple's potential market for online music in Japan.
 

Trowaman

macrumors 6502a
Nov 3, 2003
598
0
CD: TX-14
To our northern neightbors remember this:

Jobs promised your store this month. No more than 13 days to go.

To Ireland, Japan, and Austrlia:

Hold tight mates, it'll be there sooner or later.

To Sudan, Iraq, and Chile:

Sorry guys, may be a while for ya'll.
 

Trowaman

macrumors 6502a
Nov 3, 2003
598
0
CD: TX-14
oh! One more thing . . .

HOORAY!! MAC RUMORS BROKE A STORY!!!! It may be iTMS Canada release date but Appleinsider and Thinksecret don't have this story.
 

macridah

macrumors 6502a
Feb 18, 2004
868
0
Nor-Cal
This is taking it straight to sony. The mini disc is suppose to be big over there, but that will soon change. Actually, the end of all discs will come soon, everyone knows that.

This should also help out sales in japan. every conference call, steve talks about japanese revenues needs to increase. this will definintely help that.
 

BeigeUser

macrumors member
Feb 5, 2003
44
0
Tokyo, Japan
Doctor Q said:
Does anybody have stats on the size of the brick-and-mortar music store business (e.g., retail CD sales) in Japan compared to the U.S. and other countries? That might be an indicator of Apple's potential market for online music in Japan.
Japan is a different market from the U.S. A good chunk of music revenue comes from CD rentals. The concept is just like the Video/DVD rentals in the states. It's almost as if the record companies don't care if the the music is illegally copied as long as they get money from CD rentals. Copy protection is used on the discs so ripping may be problematic but copying to MDs (which is extremely popular in Japan) is no problem at all.

Japanese music is available for rental at almost the same time that it is released for retail. Foreign music takes one year after retail before it's available to rent.

Anyway, I just wanted to say that comparing retail sales is not an accurate indicator of Apple's potential market in Japan.
 

MacinDoc

macrumors 68020
Mar 22, 2004
2,263
5
The Great White North
rikers_mailbox said:
are other iTunes/iPod annoucements possible that day? It is the Tuesday before the busiest shopping day of the year, aka Black Friday.
Actually, Nov. 26 is "Black Friday", and Apple itself had a major music event on "Black Friday" last year, on Nov. 28, 2003, to be exact. If you remember, Apple offered 10% off all music-related products, on that day only...
 

Freg3000

macrumors 68000
Sep 22, 2002
1,914
0
New York
Trowaman said:
oh! One more thing . . .

HOORAY!! MAC RUMORS BROKE A STORY!!!! It may be iTMS Canada release date but Appleinsider and Thinksecret don't have this story.
This story first appeared on Macminute a few hours ago, so MR didn't break it. Although I do think the Nov. 26 date for iTMS Canda originally came from MR.

I am not dissapointed in MacRumors for lack of "completely shocking rumors," as I'd rather them have nothing then make it up.....(MacOSRumors anyone?)
 

broken_keyboard

macrumors 65816
Apr 19, 2004
1,144
0
Secret Moon base
BeigeUser said:
Japan is a different market from the U.S. A good chunk of music revenue comes from CD rentals. The concept is just like the Video/DVD rentals in the states.
That's interesting, I have never heard of such a concept. Though you can borrow oldish CDs from the public library. I guess Steve Jobs' argument that people don't want subscription services, that they would rather own the music file doesn't hold in Japan. I wonder how well iTunes would do in such a market? Still, it is a large, important market, and even if a lower proportion of people use iTMS than in the U.S, it's still a lot of money.
 

Doctor Q

Administrator
Staff member
Sep 19, 2002
36,052
3,276
Los Angeles
BeigeUser said:
Japan is a different market from the U.S. A good chunk of music revenue comes from CD rentals. The concept is just like the Video/DVD rentals in the states. It's almost as if the record companies don't care if the the music is illegally copied as long as they get money from CD rentals. Copy protection is used on the discs so ripping may be problematic but copying to MDs (which is extremely popular in Japan) is no problem at all.
Maybe the U.S. record labels could learn a lesson from that model. Although Americans are probably too enamored of owning music to be willing to rent it.
 

x86isslow

macrumors 6502a
Aug 10, 2003
889
10
USA
Doctor Q said:
Maybe the U.S. record labels could learn a lesson from that model. Although Americans are probably too enamored of owning music to be willing to rent it.
the main difference here is that in Japan, there is population density of the level needed to sustain that kind of investment. and they have a culture that works with the idea of going to say a blockbuster and renting a few CDs.

In America, the distrobution infrastructure isn't always there, and people are too lazy to go to the store if they want to listen to something. The growth of OnDemand cable is the best example I can think of for why that kind of subscription would never work in this country.
 

BeigeUser

macrumors member
Feb 5, 2003
44
0
Tokyo, Japan
If Apple can create iTMS in Japan for about a $1 per song, that will be revolutionary.

To give you guys a general idea about music pricing in Japan. Retail CDs costs around $25 to $33 each. Rental CDs cost $4-5 for the album and $2.50-$3 for the CD Single. The various downloadable music services charge about $2.50 per song aside from the annual membership fees that they may charge.

It's apparent that Japanese labels like to overcharge. This is evident by the fact that the Japanese labels sell the exact same Japanese music in Korea at a cheaper price. I hear that the $33 CD is sold for around $15. In fact, there is now a black market that imports Japanese CDs from Korea.

From what I read in a Japanese article a while ago, someone speculated that Japanese labels were resisting Apple because Apple might break their closed market and pricing structure. Although this was entirely speculation, it didn't sound unreasonable to me.

BTW, at the rental store, they sell blank minidiscs and cd-r discs right next to the CDs. It's obvious that they promote illegal copying. Is it possible that the record labels get a kick-back from every blank media sold?
 

Doctor Q

Administrator
Staff member
Sep 19, 2002
36,052
3,276
Los Angeles
BeigeUser said:
It's apparent that Japanese labels like to overcharge. This is evident by the fact that the Japanese labels sell the exact same Japanese music in Korea at a cheaper price. I hear that the $33 CD is sold for around $15. In fact, there is now a black market that imports Japanese CDs from Korea.
Is the high markup a sign that the Japanese market is willing to pay that much (for example, if demand exceeds supply) or that there isn't real competition to restrain prices?
 

BeigeUser

macrumors member
Feb 5, 2003
44
0
Tokyo, Japan
Doctor Q said:
Is the high markup a sign that the Japanese market is willing to pay that much (for example, if demand exceeds supply) or that there isn't real competition to restrain prices?
Hard to say. Being a regular consumer, I don't really know what those executives are thinking. But pure speculation from what I see, it seems that the big record labels have some kind of agreement on how they price CDs.
 

angelneo

macrumors 68000
Jun 13, 2004
1,537
0
afk
I have not used iTMS before so pardon my ignorance (it is not available in my country). Would it be possible to purchase music from other countries? If they release iTMS in Japan, does it means that the Japanese music is available worldwide?
 

BeigeUser

macrumors member
Feb 5, 2003
44
0
Tokyo, Japan
angelneo said:
I have not used iTMS before so pardon my ignorance (it is not available in my country). Would it be possible to purchase music from other countries? If they release iTMS in Japan, does it means that the Japanese music is available worldwide?
Usually no. ITMS payments are made by credit card and Apple checks which country issues the card. If the iTMS country and credit card country doesn't match, Apple won't allow you to buy music.

There are ways around this though. I am a U.S. citizen living in Japan so I still have my old U.S. issue Mastercard which I can use to buy U.S. music while in Japan. I think you can also download music from overseas if someone sends you a iTMS gift certificate. The only problem being that somebody needs to get the gift certificates for you first.