by CAROLINE GAVURA Staff Writer
Many people were upset when Apple launched iTunes on April 28, 2003, claiming it would kill the old music industry. On the contrary, iTunes revolutionized the way people can legally acquire digital music, and still does, 10 years later.
Instead of having to purchase a physical copy of a CD, put it into a computer, rip the music off of it, and then put it on an iPod, Apple customers can instantly download music right off of their device.
Now on its 10th anniversary, iTunes has sold over 26 billion songs and remains an entertainment powerhouse, expanding to include TV shows and movies that can be downloaded.
iTunes has also received new features throughout the years, including Top Charts, to show which songs are the most popular, and the Genius feature, which analyzes a customer’s music library to find songs similar to them that they can purchase.
“Buying a CD on iTunes is much cheaper compared to buying a physical copy because it is a digital download. It is also attractive to people who would normally illegally download music because it’s a much easier program to use,” said sophomore Casey Reyes.
Unlike illegal music sharing websites, like LimeWire, iTunes provides quality sounding music for affordable prices. The public receives the music they want, and the artist receives the profit to make more music. It is a win-win.
In 2004, physical copies of CDs were the main source of revenue for the music industry. By 2012, digital downloads contributed to 40 percent of all revenue, knocking physical sales down to a little over 30 percent.
“I used to only buy physical copies of CDs,” said an anonymous student, “but it is just not practical anymore. With iTunes I can buy music instantly and have it on my phone in a matter of seconds!”
Apple’s plan for the decade ahead is a streaming service called, “iRadio.” This goes against what Steve Jobs believed, which was people have an emotional connection with their favorite songs and want to own them, not rent them.
Nevertheless, iTunes needs to step up its game in the coming years to compete with new, more advanced music sharing websites hitting the Internet.
“I think iRadio would be an awesome idea. It would be interesting to see how it compares to Pandora and Spotify. iTunes has changed the music industry so much in just 10 years, I can’t wait to see what lies ahead in the future,” said sophomore Bree Mckenna.
What is your favorite feature of iTunes?