updated 03:20 pm EDT, Wed October 19, 2011
Apple preps for service launch
An option to activate iTunes Match is spontaneously appearing in iOS 5's Settings app, users say. MacNN has verified that going into the Music section of the app will reveal the slider after one or two seconds of waiting. Since the command was previously missing, Apple appears to have changed a server-side setting to flag iTunes Match as available.
iTunes Match is not actually live though, and is in fact only scheduled to debut at the end of October. Its launch will likely be preceded by the release of iTunes 10.5.1, which is currently in its first beta. The beta code is required for developers participating in iTunes Match testing, and Apple has warned that associated iCloud libraries will be deleted once the company moves on to the next beta release.
Regular users attempting to turn on iTunes Match in iOS 5 will see a pop-up asking them to sign up for service through iTunes. When that does become a possibility, Match will cost $25 a year. The US should be the first to get the option, followed by a small group of other countries including Australia, Austria, Canada, Germany, Ireland, and the UK.