updated 01:03 pm EST, Wed December 5, 2012
Apps may not be able to update
People around the world are having trouble accessing the iTunes Store and the Mac and iOS App Stores, according to accounts on Twitter, and tests by MacNN. While the problems aren't universal, they appear to be affecting people in multiple countries, and in some cases may be creating serious issues. Trying to update iOS apps may fail outright, for example.
Problems appear to have started yesterday. The timing may be more than a coincidence, since Tuesday is also the same day Apple launched the iTunes Music Store in 56 more countries, almost doubling its reach. Apple could be suffering from high traffic or other complications arising from supporting the new regions.
One of the new countries, Russia, has been hit by a still another problem in the Movies category of the iTunes Store. A section called "More Films in Different Languages" has been displaying ads for pornography and prostitutes, in place of intended banner graphics. It's believed that Apple may have been using ".xxx" URLs as placeholders, but inadvertently linked to real sites when it failed to update Movies before going live.