Where's The iTunes Streaming? It Would Have Crushed the Carriers

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jun 7, 2011.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Many readers were perplexed by the lack of an iTunes streaming music service at yesterday's WWDC keynote. Apple instead launched iTunes Match -- a service that allows users to get the same "download anywhere" benefits from songs they have ripped from CD's (or, ahem, *acquired* from other sources) as songs they have purchased from the iTunes Music Store.


    As All Things Digital's Peter Kafka put it:
    Awesome. But, users still have to download songs to their iDevices, and if you have a ton of music, that can be a pain. Many observers expected iCloud would include a music streaming service, a la Lala -- but it didn't. Why?

    Because it would have killed the carriers. Erica Naone writes in the Technology Review:
    With Apple selling nearly 20 million iPhones per quarter, launching a major streaming music platform that every iPhone user would instantly start using would quite literally overload the carriers. It would be like Manhattan or San Francisco, only everywhere. And what's the point of a streaming music service if you can't get a signal?

    Article Link: Where's The iTunes Streaming? It Would Have Crushed the Carriers
  2. scottparker999 macrumors member

    Aug 4, 2009
    This is true. I guess music streaming is one for the future.
  3. nicroma macrumors 6502


    Jun 20, 2009
    Midwest, USA
    I encourage people to use Plex if they want to stream their music from their computer. Not only that, but it will also let you stream just about any video as well. I've fallen in love with it. :cool:
  4. clarenceworley macrumors newbie

    Jun 7, 2011
    I'm a bit disappointed at the lack of streaming from iCloud. How would it kill the carriers? People use Rhapsody and Napster and the carriers are fine. How is it different from streaming tons of Netflix? Obviously it will eat away your data plan, but really what's the difference? iCloud is cool without a doubt, but "it'll kill the carrier" is a pretty weak answer.
  5. djrobsd macrumors 6502a

    May 2, 2008
    Wow!!! Seriously? What the hell is the point of this new service then? Most people's music collections are bigger then the storage in their iphone or ipad device... Now we'll have to sit and manually pick which songs to download... So much for a seamless automatic syncing experience of all our music...

    What a joke, the carriers seriously strong armed Apple into not streaming? Everyone already streams Pandora, Napster, Youtube, etc... This is the 21st century after all... Shame on Apple.

    I guess I better start uploading my tracks to Google... All 15,000 of them.
  6. baleensavage macrumors 6502a

    Aug 2, 2005
    On an island in Maine
    Then just lock it to wifi. It's that simple. If Apple had a streaming option with this they could have crushed the competition (Google and Amazon), but without it, iTunes match is an online backup and syncing service, not the full fledged online music solution it could have been.
  7. Tones2 macrumors 65816

    Jan 8, 2009
    A great argument for MORE DEVICE CAPACITY!

  8. mrfoof82 macrumors 6502a

    May 26, 2010
    Boston, MA
    Not only carriers...

    • But your wallet, to pay for that data transmission.
    • And your battery life, to constantly handle that streaming.
  9. Norcalchavo macrumors regular

    Sep 17, 2007
    Santa Clara, California
    huge disappointment. Why couldn't they just move iTunes to the cloud for direct playback on a personal computer and not necessarily to a mobile device?
    aka Lala. I guess i'll be uploading my music to google music. I don't care if it takes weeks to upload. At least I'll be able to stream it to my computer and iDevice.

    Btw, I think the real reason behind this is that they still want to keep selling iDevices with 16gb/32gb/64gb to make more money. If they would to really move everything to the cloud, especially music, costumers wouldn't be buying large storage devices and instead a basic iDevice which would result in a loss of money for Apple.
  10. MacMan86 macrumors 6502

    Jul 22, 2008
    Not sure I'm buying this answer. If neither AT&T nor Verizon have unlimited data anymore, surely it's up to the individual how they use up their allocated data? If they want to blow the whole 500MB on streaming, why can't they?

    Or are so many people on grandfathered unlimited plans still? Not that it's going to make a difference to me anyway, given we won't even have iTunes Match for an indeterminate amount of time here in the UK
  11. Doctor Q Administrator

    Doctor Q

    Staff Member

    Sep 19, 2002
    Los Angeles
    Apple's streaming media patent was about performance issues for streaming service. That could imply both that they are still planning a streaming service and that they will reduce bandwidth requirements by relying as much as possible on local storage.
  12. jlgolson Contributing Editor


    Jun 2, 2011
    Durango, CO
    The difference is that not that many people use Rhapsody and Napster, especially on mobile devices. If every iPhone user began using a streaming music service for all their streaming needs (as a streaming iCloud would be meant for), it honestly would be more than the network could handle.

    As to why they didn't offer it Wi-Fi only? That I can't answer.
  13. joseph2166 macrumors 6502

    Jan 11, 2006
    I'd be vaguely interested to see the stats, but I can't imagine for one second that 'most people's' digital collections are too big for an iPhone, let alone an iPad. Out of interest, have YOU got more than 64gb of music?

    Did people really expect a workable, cheap-to-use system for streaming over 3g? Wi-fi maybe, which probably wouldn't be THAT hard to implement at a later date, as it would just be a cloud version of home sharing. But reliable and cheap streaming over 3G? Never on a large scale. And with the number of iOS users out there, everything has to be on a large scale.
  14. andi242 macrumors member


    Jan 27, 2009
    At least the labels will get something for that pirated music.
    And will get a little something more for legally ripped music. :)
  15. DCstewieG macrumors member


    Jun 30, 2008
    That probably is the primary reason but it's also in Apple's interest to sell higher capacity devices as I'm sure they have better margins. How much does it cost Apple to throw in another stick of memory? Not 100 bucks.
  16. ACKRITE macrumors member


    May 11, 2008
    West Hartford, CT
    Indeed I do. Currently at 489GB of music alone.
  17. Dcuellar macrumors regular

    Feb 24, 2010
    I don't much care about this. I use Subsonic server with the iSub app and it does everything I need it to.

    Check it out.
  18. gigemzach macrumors 6502

    Dec 31, 2009
    San Antonio, Texas
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_2 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8H7 Safari/6533.18.5)

  19. locust76 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 23, 2009
    Mobile carriers, not ISPs. You won't stream Netflix over 3G like you would your music. Streaming videos over 3G is a painful, horrible experience, while with much less bandwidth you can get perfect audio quality, therefore you'd be streaming gigabytes of music per month instead of that one time you tried to watch a TV show over 3G.

    Think about it; AT&T already bitches enough having to carry only a few kilobits per second per phone. Imagine if that jumped to a few hundred kilobits per second per phone because Apple saw fit to enable iTunes streaming.
  20. milo macrumors 604

    Sep 23, 2003
    Seems like the obvious solution would have been to include streaming on wifi only (and on computers), but people would whine about that too. No matter what they do, someone will complain, but this service will likely still be a big hit. And down the road when the networks can handle it, they'll upgrade the feature.

    "Everyone" doesn't stream Pandora or Napster by any stretch of the imagination. Maybe 5 or 10 percent of iPhone users? Put streaming audio in the bundled apps and that probably jumps to 90%.

    There's a difference between allowing something that's data heavy but only used by a few power users and making something that's data heavy a prominent feature.

    Not just music, apps and particularly movies (which can be HD) can eat up that space quickly.
  21. nvbrit macrumors 6502


    Oct 12, 2007
    Reno, NV
    they didn't say

    um, Apple actually didn't really tell us that you cannot stream the music from the cloud. In fact they didn't really touch much upon the iTunes match service other than how it matches or uploads the music.

    They never said how we get at that music once it's been matched and/or up converted to the higher quality.

    As this is not going to be released until the fall I think we'll just have to wait and see exactly what we get.
  22. nvbrit macrumors 6502


    Oct 12, 2007
    Reno, NV
    from the iTunes in the Cloud page on Apple.com...

    Any music with a match is automatically added to your iCloud library for you to listen to anytime, on any device. Since there are more than 18 million songs in the iTunes Store, most of your music is probably already in iCloud. All you have to upload is what iTunes can’t match. Which is much faster than starting from scratch. And all the music iTunes matches plays back at 256-Kbps iTunes Plus quality — even if your original copy was of lower quality.

    so this says we can listen anytime on any device and also says the music plays back.. nowhere does it say we have to download the music back to another device in order to listen to it.
  23. tmofee macrumors regular

    Sep 27, 2009
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Mobile/8J2)

    I wonder how technical this iTunes match will be. Say you have that song in your library but not from the greatest hits that iTunes has on their server - will they still let you download it?
  24. accidental macrumors newbie

    Jun 3, 2011
    Exactly what I was thinking when I read this. So much confusion out there right now.
  25. Icculus macrumors 6502

    Jun 2, 2007
    Frisco, TX
    Nice find, and thanks for sending us the info. There is a lot of confusion out there about iCloud / iTunes Match I guess we will just have to wait and see.

    My biggest concern, besides streaming, is I am very meticulous about metadata and so many times the iTunes store doesn't list out the album the way I would. I have spent so much time making it the way I want, now with iTunes Match does this get replicated to the cloud or do I get the iTunes store metadata? I know this cannot be answered but its going to be a long few months before we can all see the cloud work in person.

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