Cupertino’s has just released the beta version of iTunes Match, a service that brings all your music to iCloud, allowing anywhere/anytime access to the entire library from any device.
Concurrent with the iTunes Match beta is a new beta version of iTunes 10.5, beta 6.1. Match scans a user’s music and finds copies of those songs in iCloud. It allows users to store their entire music collection (up to 25,000 songs), including songs that they’ve ripped from CDs or purchased through iTunes. You can then stream those songs to any device — iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, or Apple TV – via iTunes, without having to store them locally.
For now, iTunes Match is available to US-based developers, the service will let developers to sign up for a yearly $24.99. Hopping on the bandwagon early has extra rewards too — early birds get three months (on top of their yearly subscription) for free. Developers must have to download this newest beta version in order to enable iTunes Match. Apple encourages developers to continue maintaining backups of their iTunes libraries, as iCloud libraries may be reset periodically during the beta.
Its public release is expected to concur with that of iOS 5, iTunes 10.5, iCloud, and possibly OS X Lion 10.7.2, those features will likely launch along with the iPhone 5, all of which may debut in either September or October.
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