Apple’s iTunes is already in the cloud, NewBay says

7 Mar 2011

Despite rumours circulating last week that Apple is in discussions with music labels about putting iTunes in the cloud and making purchased music available on a multitude of devices, NewBay Software says it has had this service available in the cloud since last year.

Last week, it emerged that Apple is reportedly in talks with record companies about giving iTunes customers easier access to music they’ve purchased across multiple devices, backed up in perpetuity in the internet cloud. The technology giant, which brought us the iPod and the iPad, is believed to be in talks with Vivendi, Universal, Sony, Warner and EMI to give users more flexibility in how they buy their music and what they can do with it.

The deal would manifest itself in a permanent backup of music purchases for users if the originals are damaged or lost.

People want a singular experience across multiple devices

However, according to Dublin-headquartered company NewBay, such a service has been in existence since last year and was officially unveiled at the recent Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

While new for Apple, some subscribers have had access to music in the cloud since 2010, thanks to NewBay’s white-label platform, the company explained.

“Apple is finally realising that people want to access their music and video and other content from any connected device, whether it be a mobile phone, PC, tablet, TV, game console, etc,” explained Steve French, VP global marketing, NewBay.

“The only way to make this happen is by putting all user content, both user generated and premium, in the cloud.

“The Apple rumours come hot on the tail of NewBay’s recent announcement at Mobile World Congress 2011 (Play Your ‘iTunes’ Collection from any Device, Anywhere with NewBay) and our recent cloud-based media management service deployment for US carrier Verizon, V CAST Media Manager, which is available to millions of subscribers. NewBay is enabling the digital content cloud-services vision and it looks like Apple is just starting to get it.”

The Verizon V CAST Media Manager, powered by the NewBay LifeCache platform, operates just like an ‘iTunes in the cloud’ by enabling customers to copy all their digital content – including purchases from iTunes – and CD collections to the cloud, enabling them to manage music, create playlists and listen to them from any connected computer, mobile handset, tablet or TV.

The technology also enables users to share and sync this content with their social networks, address book contacts and other connected devices.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years