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ITunes LP Demise Doesn't Mean Apple is Done Selling Music
10 March 2018, 12:55 | Cassandra Thompson
Apple reportedly killing iTunes LPs in March, pulling them throughout 2018
A take on the traditional "long play" meaning of LP, iTunes' LPs bundled albums with art, lyrics, videos, bonus tracks, and other extra materials that fans of the artist would enjoy. A story in Metro erroneously linked the end of iTunes LPs with the end of iTunes itself. Not only will these iTunes LPs continue to be available, but users will still be able to download any previous or new purchases of iTunes LPs at any time via iTunes.
The iTunes LP format is on its last legs. It's hard to imagine iTunes LPs being the reason why people buy albums in full, so that's probably not the case.
Apple explains on its website: "iTunes LPsoffer endless opportunities to create an interactive, multimedia experience for albums in iTunes".
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The anonymous source who leaked the email to Metro told the publication that "It's clear that streaming is the future".
Although Metro sensationally suggests that the reported discontinuation of iTunes LPs "has sparked fears it's planning to kill off iTunes" and "chimes with rumours that Apple is intending to stop selling music downloads and shift to a subscription model", the move is unlikely to have anywhere near that impact. It's unclear how iTunes, which has been heavily updated with Apple Music and other integrations since iTunes LP's debut, now handles the feature.
A leaked email from the Apple Music Team to music industry partners may hint that iTunes on the way out. Spotify is the leader in streaming music services globally, with the company reporting 71 million paying subscribers and more than 159 million monthly active listeners (MAUs) as of December 2017. Spotify is now reigning in the streaming landscape, with twice as many subscribers as Apple Music, but Apple is expected to eclipse those numbers by this summer.
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