Music Store Update: Sony Connect Launches This Monday; US iTunes Counts Down to 100 million

Robert Ashcroft, Sony’s VP for European Network services has commented that the company’s online music offering, Connect, will be launching in Europe this Monday.

All five of the major labels, along with 150 independents, have signed up for the service.

Tracks will be encoded in Sony’s proprietary ATRAC format, not MP3, so you’ll need Sony’s Sonic Stage software to make use of the music store. And forget about using your iPod too.

Meanwhile, Apple are getting the champagne ready for the 100,000,000th iTunes track sold. To mark the event, Apple are giving away 50 new iPods, a gift certificate for 10,000 iTunes downloads (!) and 1 17” Powerbook. iTunes customers around the world are eligible.

“As we approach the unprecedented milestone of 100 million legally downloaded songs, we want to thank our customers who have made the iTunes Music Store such a stunning success,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “iTunes is pulling even further ahead of its competitors, and it’s all due to the wonderful customers we have.” That’s right Steve, don’t you forget it.

Jobs originally predicted that 100 million milestone would be reached within the first year of iTunes – but that would have been the end of April. This celebration is coming a little later than expected, but nevertheless iTunes has been an incredible success and its monthly totals are now far in excess of previous expectations.

Sony Connect


Published by

Fraser Lovatt

Fraser Lovatt has spent the last fifteen years working in publishing, TV and the Internet in various capacities, and believes that they will be seperate platforms for at least a while yet. His main interests at the moment are exploring where Linux is taking home entertainment and how technology is conferring technical skills on more and more people. Fraser Lovatt was born in the same year that 2001: A Space Odyssey was delighting and confusing people in the cinemas, and developed a lifelong love of technology as soon as he realised that things could be taken apart, sometimes put back together again, but mostly left in bits or made into something the original designer hadn't quite planned upon. At school he was definitely in the ZX Spectrum/Magpie/BMX camp, rather than the BBC Micro/Blue Peter/well-behaved group. This is all deeply ironic as he later went on to spend nine years working at the BBC. After a few years of working as a bookseller in Scotland, ("Back when it was actually a skilled profession" he'll tell anyone still listening), he moved to England for reasons he can't quite explain adequately to himself. After a couple of publishing jobs punctuated by sporadic bursts of travelling and photography came the aforementioned nine years at the BBC where he specialised in internet technologies and video. These days his primary interests are Java, Linux, videogames and pies - and if they're not candidates for convergence, then what is?