The recent iOS5 announcement revealing the iCloud service with iTunes Match to make available your purchased and ripped music in the cloud and keep it sync’d across all your iOS5 devices caused huge excitement. However here in the UK the service won’t be available until the first quarter of 2012 up to 6 months after its US launch in the autumn of this year.
According to The Telegraph, a spokesman for the Performing Right Society (PRS), which regulates royalties for composers and songwriters, told The Telegraph, that negotiations with Apple about ensuring rights in the UK had started but were at a “very early stage”.
“The licensing team at the PRS have started talks with Apple, but are a long way off from any deals being signed…It is very much the early stages of the negotiations and is similar to the launch of iTunes – which began in the US and took a while to roll out to other countries,” they said.
A music executive at one of the major record labels, who wished to remain unnamed, said: “Tentative talks have begun between the major labels and Apple in the UK. However, all talks are at the really early stages and no one expects to see the cloud music service live on this side of the pond until 2012.”
Its possible Apple could attempt to fast-track this process, but it seems likely the UK record labels are waiting to see what the market impact on sales is in the US before committing to anything here in the UK. Their concern clearly lies in the paid iTunes Match service that scans your music library and makes available online Apple’s own version of recognised songs, potentially legitimising songs that were not originally purchased by the users, be they downloaded or simply a rip of a ‘borrowed’ cd