The Guardian (UK): Apple Is Negotiating To Launch iTunes Music Store In Europe

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Thereis some good news for European Observers who are a bit tense about playing second fiddle to their US cousins when it comes to Appleis new iTunes Music Store (iMS). The Guardian, a UK newspaper based in London, is reporting that Apple is currently in the process of negotiating music licensing that will allow the iMS to sell to European customers. Currently, the iMS is limited to people ordering with US-based credit cards only, due to licensing restrictions. From The Guardian:

Computer company Apple is negotiating with record labels to launch its iTunes online music download service in Europe by the end of the year following the ventureis much-hyped US debut. Apple launched iTunes in the US two weeks ago. It has got off to a strong start with more than 1m songs downloaded in its first week.

Apple and its chief executive Steve Jobs now want to show it can solve the problems facing record companies in Europe too. The secret of Mr Jobsi success is partly to do with Appleis cachet, its reputation for good design and for championing consumers rather than corporations.

[...]

Record industry insiders said they were impressed by the early success of iTunes but cautioned that launching in Europe would not be easy. They said that, with many artists signed to different labels in different countries, rights agreements would take time to secure.

The Guardian also praises iMSis interface, and says that the success of the iMS rollout is "expected" to convince such holdouts as The Beatles and The Rolling Stones to allow their music to be sold online. Currently, both groups are not to be found in Appleis selection.

There is more in the full story at The Guardianis Web site.

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