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Apple, music labels to offer ringtones

updated 11:55 am EDT, Fri August 31, 2007

Apple to offer ringtones

Apple and the major music labels are preparing to sell customizable ringtones to iPhone customers via the iTunes Store, according to a report from the New York Post. Apple will likely announce the new service when it unveils new iPods, and that could be as early as next Friday. Apple is currently working with record labels to ink a deal that would allow users to turn almost any song sold through its iTunes Store into a ringtone for a fee. Specific pricing remains unknown, but current carriers typically charge between $1.99 and $2.49 for each ringtone. Apple will allow users to convert songs already purchased from the iTunes Store into ringtones, and iPhone users will be able to select any part of a chosen song to serve as the ringtone. That option contrasts with current ringtone deals from carriers like Sprint and Verizon that only offer pre-determined song samples. Most major music labels are working with Apple to offer ringtones, but Universal Music Group reportedly refused Apple's offer.

Apple is also planning to offer traditional ringtones for users who are uninterested in custom tones, according to the report. The ringtone business raked in more than $600 million last year alone in the U.S., while worldwide ringtones pulled in $3.5 billion.

The Cupertino-based company recently confirmed that it will host a special event on September 5th, and curiously issued a media invite with a tagline that matches a famous press release issued just after the Beetles broke up in 1970. That tagline, coupled with the recent additions of three Beatle solo works to the iTunes Store, lead industry watchers to speculate that the Beetles catalog could make its debut in a digital format for the very first time via the iTunes Store.

Experts expect Apple's ringtones to work exclusively with its recently launched iPhone handset.




by MacNN Staff

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Comments

  1. Zaren

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Dear God, the "Beetles"?

    Come ON, editors, you're not even trying!

  1. ClockNova

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    What?

    Of course, you could just load any song from your computer onto your phone and designate that as the ringtone for free. Duh. It's what I do. Why people pay for something they can do for free is beyond me.

  1. Apple Master 007

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    It's about Ad Dollars...

    The key thing to remember is that as consumers we are far less important to the big media conglomerates as advertisers are. They make far more money from advertising than they do from direct consumer sales such as iTunes or DVDs. This is the main reason they want to put their shows on there own website where they can sell ad space around the shows and on the site. They are blinded by their own greed, and the only thing they care about is their bottom line.

  1. Apple Master 007

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    wrong post

    The previous post was supposed to go to the NBC/iTunes article. some how I got redirected to this article after log in. Sorry no delete option.

  1. mgpalma

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    re: Beetles

    Now THAT"S funny, TWICE!

    "three Beetle solo works to the iTunes Store"

    "speculate that the Beetles catalog could make"

  1. rok

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    wow, universal...

    hmmm... so universal is jumping headlong into the night without apple. between this and the tv shows being removed, where will they go? napster? dead. sony's connect service? dead too. real's rhapsody? almost dead. zune marketplace? and play on what, zunes NO ONE has seen being used out in the wild (but MS assures us that they're selling great).

    good luck, universal. you're gonna need it.

  1. MacZealot36

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Loading your songs

    You can put your own ringtones on if you want to risk Jailbreaking your iPhone. I dont know how many people are doing this based on the number of users who have an iPhone. I'm sure there are quite a few since all these hacks are very popular but I bet there are alot of average users like myself whom a more than happy to use the phone as designed and not have to fiddle with everything. I have been hesitant to unlock mine. Also I find most peoples ringtones to be very annoying when hearing them in public.

  1. drole.homme

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Hallelujah!

    I'm glad it's coming. I miss my Broadway ringtones and I'm tired of Marimba. I also like not having a $600 paperweight so I will never try Jailbreak. Hallelujah!

  1. GoatPoop

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    One Word...

    iToner.app

  1. aesculanus

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    wtf?!!

    The "Ringtone Business????" People buy these things like oil now?

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