Apple’s music service, iTunes Match, which was announced at June’s WWDC, is being tested with Apple developer community. The iCloud service will support streaming of iTunes music library to the iOS devices.
Not only will iCloud give Apple a strong head-start into the cloud computing industry, the music service will certainly make it tough for Google’s Music Beta and Amazon’s Cloud Player to confront it.
The music service in iTunes scans and compares the music library in your device with the iTunes Music store and if it can’t find a match, it automatically prompts you to upload tracks from your iCloud. Google or Amazon’s music service would need you to upload songs.
Amazon’s Cloud Player sells songs via its MP3 stores, from where you need to download the songs and upload them in your Cloud Drive.
With Google’s Music Beta service, you must upload their existing music collection to the service for streaming.
RBC’s Mike Abramsky says, Apple's licensing relationships and 'controlled' platform may appeal to studios/publishers seeking to minimize piracy, while protecting their economics in a hosted model.
The iTune Match supports up to 25,000 songs and costs $24.99 a year, which is almost as affordable as Spotify or Rdio.
In comparison, Amazon, which set the industry standard when it released its cloud service, is giving away 5 GB of free storage, which can go up to 20 GB with the purchase of one mp3 album. Beyond the 20 GB, storage space can be bought in blocks of 50GB, 100GB, 200GB, 500GB, and 1,000GB, with each 1 GB costing $1. Thus, you get 1,000 GB for $1,000.
However, the most appealing feature about the iCloud is that you can listen to music without having to load up your library in your iPhone or iPod.