Apple is shutting down the iTunes download store
According to a report posted by Digital Music News, Apple is now scheduling an end date for paid iTunes music downloads, according to sources inside the company.
Apple is now experiencing meteoric growth on its streaming music platform, Apple Music. But that growth is directly impacting Apple’s old-line downloads store, for obvious reasons. And, ultimately hastening its demise.
Just last week, Apple executive Jimmy Iovine pointed to a shutdown when ‘people stop buying’. Now, sources inside the company are pointing to a firm date for a planned shutdown of the iTunes music download store. Earlier, these same sources pointed to an ‘early 2019’ shutdown, though internal roadmaps now include a March 31st, 2019 phase-out of the service.
The sources clarified that this would only be the announcement date. Effectively, that will set in motion the shutdown, with users given ample warning of the upcoming phase-out.
Additionally, the sources stressed that music downloads will always work on all Apple devices and the iTunes platform, across all versions. That includes music purchased on iTunes, or uploaded from any other source. So you’ll always be able to play MP3s, iTunes-purchased AACs, and even older, DRM-protected iTunes songs (many years ago, song downloads were ‘DRM protected,’ creating limitations on file-sharing and other uses).
Other variations, including ‘iTunes Plus’ downloads and video downloads, will always be playable.