iTunes first with Beatles-approved ringtones
Apple took advantage of its current exclusive on The Beatles (iTunes Store) with the first-ever availability of ringtones from the band on iTunes. The initial batch involves ringtones cut from the singles highlight album 1. Picks range from the very earliest songs, such as "Love Me Do," to "The Ballad of John and Yoko" and the very tail end of the band's career.
Comes on the heels of free 'Submarine' book
Following yesterday's release of a free "children's" e-book exploring the world and story based on the 1968 Beatles film Yellow Submarine, Apple has posted a new ad to YouTube promoting the Beatles catalog on iTunes, in a spot seemingly intended to suggest the band's albums as a gift suggestion. The ad features a "fly-through" of the Beatles' 12 studio albums, from Please Please Me to Abbey Road.
Rare giveaway features interactive elements
The iTunes store is giving away copies of a Yellow Submarine e-book from the Beatles, as featured on the main page of the store. The book, which is dedicated simply "For Steve," tells the tale of the 1968 movie in form of a children's book, with clips from the film, animated illustration and a read-along feature using actor Dean Lennox Kelly. The book is a free download.
EMI publishing, music to be sold off separately
(Update: confirmed) Citigroup is splitting EMI in two for a sale that's about to be imminent, according to claims Friday. Pointing to sources, the Wall Street Journal's Dana Cimilluca said that the publishing wing, EMI Music Publishing, would be sold off to a Sony consortium for $2.2 billion. The pure music label would go to Universal for $1.9 billion.
HP puts all of Paul McCartney's assets in cloud
HP Enterprise Services has teamed up with Paul McCartney's media company MPL Communications to create a library of the singer's works and related memorabilia. Over one million items are stored online, including photos, videos from live concerts, rolls of film, videotapes, music recordings, works of art and more. The digitized assets are stored on HP Converged Infrastructure, made up of modular HP servers, storage and networking software.
iTunes up to 66.2 percent in NPD digi music ranks
iTunes is continuing to increase its share of the digital music market in the US even in spite of Amazon MP3, the NPD Group found on Thursday. Amazon moved up 2.3 points from year-to-year to 13.2 percent of the American download market in the summer, but Apple climbed by an even higher amount, up three points to 66.2 percent. As a result, all of Amazon's gain came at the expense of smaller rivals, which combined were just 20.5 percent.
Beatles hit 2 million songs in iTunes debut
(Update: more data) The Beatles's first appearance on a digital store has managed a dramatic resurgence in sales, data from Apple said. About two million individual tracks and 450,000 albums were sold on iTunes in the first week. Information collected by Billboard gave 1969's Abbey Road the lead, both as the top-selling album and for "Here Comes the Sun" as the top-selling song.
Catalog held up by Apple Corps dispute with EMI
Following Apple's announcement that it would finally bring Beatles tracks onto the iTunes store, additional information of the negotiations has surfaced. Apple reportedly beat offers from Google and Amazon to secure the digital catalog, industry insiders have told the New York Post. Although the terms of the final deal were not disclosed, Apple may have been forced to take a smaller cut to guarantee exclusivity into 2011.
iTunes Beatles deal an exclusive past January
Apple's deal for the Beatles on the iTunes Store is an exclusive "into 2011," EMI representative Dylan Jones said. While Apple hasn't characterized the catalog deal as a matter of sole rights, its deal isn't based on the calendar year and will prevent other stores from getting the catalog until sometime beyond January 1. Jones wouldn't be drawn by AllThingsD into saying when the exclusive would end.
Beatles said locked for iTunes
The Beatles will be the center of Apple's iTunes news on Tuesday, a major leak may have confirmed today. Talks running as late as last week between Apple, the Beatles and EMI should have Apple announcing that the band's catalog will "soon" be on Apple's store. The WSJ sources didn't discover the conditions and whether it would be an iTunes exclusive for now, though neither Amazon nor other major stores have mentioned the news.
iTunes Nov 16 not expected to bring streams
Apple's special iTunes unveiling on Tuesday isn't likely to involve new streaming music features, alleged insiders said today. Music industry contacts echoed statements that Apple doesn't have deals and by extension wouldn't have rights to either a flat-rate subscription or to an online locker. AllThingsD, despite its sources, hadn't learned what it might be.
Apple Records plans non-Beatle digital releases
Apple Records edged closer towards Beatles digital tracks on Tuesday with word that it would put up 15 remastered versions of its non-Beatles albums. The famous label plans an Internet launch on October 26 for early albums from well-known artists like Badfinger, Billy Preston and James Taylor, many of whom were working with one or more Beatles. Apple didn't say which stores would get the albums, but the individual Beatles' albums are already on iTunes and other major music stores.
Beatles edge closer to pure digital sales
The Beatles on Wednesday surprised the music industry by offering their collection outside of a disc for the first time. The Limited Edition USB Stick carries the entire LP collection of the British band in a stereo mix along with the mini-documentaries, album art and liner notes from the remastered CDs. Significantly, all of the songs come both in unprotected 320Kbps MP3 as well as in a similarly unguarded, lossless FLAC and should work on most any computer or portable player.
Apple's Sept. 9th event to bring new iPods, more
With Apple's iPod price cuts already in place, it seems that the company is sure to introduce a revamped iPod lineup at its Sept 9th Music event, which starts today at 10am PST/1pm EST. While Apple has regularly announced new iPods in September, expectations are elevated as rumors indicate that the Touch, Nano and even Classic may be gaining cameras enabling photo and/or video functions. There are, however, conflicting reports about whether the Beatles' music will make its debut on Apple's immensely popular iTunes digital platform.
Rock Band guitars outed
It's already known that The Beatles: Rock Band game and related custom controllers are due to ship on September 9th and details on the controller guitars have been recently revealed, thanks to a few product listing on retailer Gamespot's website. The Gretsch Duo-Jet and Rickenbacker 325 guitar controllers, styled after George Harrison's and John Lennon's actual respective guitars, will launch at the same time as the game itself, priced at $100 each for all three systems.
Beatles iTunes delayed
Paul McCartney has said that the negotiations to bring the Beatles' music onto iTunes have encountered problems, according to the Associated Press. "The last word I got back was it's stalled at the whole moment, the whole process," he said. Apple Corps, Ltd., the band's holding company, has thus far prohibited the Beatles' music to be sold on any Internet outlets. EMI, the label that owns the recordings, claimed that it was still trying to resolve the matter, but would ultimately need Apple Corps' blessing before any agreements could be reached.
Beatles Rock Band in 2009
The Beatles today confirmed that the first computer-focused release of their music will come through a deal with Rock Band maker Harmonix as well as its partner MTV. The unnamed title, now said to be separate from the Rock Band series in contrast to earlier claims by others, will be devoted solely to the Beatles and should represent a progression through their music. Both of the surviving Beatles, Sir Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, have contributed input to the project along with widows Olivia Harrison and Yoko Ono Lennon.