Bridging the Apple Community and Keeping Tabs on the Rumor Mill.

Apple Releases iTunes 10.5.1 with iTunes Match

iTunes MatchOriginally announced for a late October release, iTunes Match is finally here, a couple of weeks late but no worse for the wear. The service requires iTunes 10.5.1, which went live on Monday and now allows users to “scan and match” their music library against iCloud for only $24.99 per year.

Now here’s an odd one: Apple announced last Friday that it was wiping developers’ iTunes Match accounts on Saturday ahead of the release, which everyone assumed would be this week. But then, late Saturday night, the company pushed out iTunes 10.5.1 beta 3 so developers could continue testing the scan and match service.

Imagine our surprise when iTunes 10.5.1 was actually released on Monday, complete with the $24.99 per year iTunes Match service available to developers and the rest of us regular folks as well. To get it, simply hit Software Update and download the latest version, or you can jump over to Apple’s website and grab it directly.

So what exactly does iTunes Match offer for $24.99 per year? For those who don’t purchase music from iTunes, quite a lot, actually. The service does a “scan and match” against your music library, making available any tracks that it’s able to match and allowing you to download 256Kbps AAC DRM-free versions to any computer or iOS device where it’s turned on (requires iOS 5). With more than 20 million songs in Apple’s coffers, “most of your music is probably already in iCloud,” according to the company.

We’ll have some detailed coverage on iTunes Match coming up shortly -- including a list of things we’d still like to see it do.

Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter


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