Happy Birthday! Apple iTunes Store Is 10 Years Old

The iTunes Store turned 10-years-old today. The iTunes Store, originally the iTunes Music Store ITMS — a software-based online digital media store operated by Apple Inc. — opened on April 28, 2003, and has been the biggest music vendor in the United States since April 2008.

The iTunes media player application developed by Apple Inc. to play AAC and MP3 formatted music recordings was released January 9, 2001. SoundJam MP, developed by Bill Kincaid and released by Casady & Greene in 1999, was renamed iTunes when Apple purchased it in 2000. In April 2003, Apple iTunes app version 4.0 introduced the iTunes Store for Macintosh computers. In October 2003, version 4.1 added support for Microsoft Windows 2000 and Windows XP.

At Macworld 2003, Steve Jobs displayed new slide up on the huge screen before him. “We started about a year and a half ago to create a music store,” the Apple chief executive told Apple fans in the audience. “That meant we have to go and negotiate with the big five music companies. Now, before we did this I was reminded of a quote from Hunter S Thompson about the music industry.”

He looked up at the screen. In giant letters it read: “The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs.”

Jobs read it out loud and then paused to let the slide’s final line appear: “There’s also a negative side.” Laughter erupted from the audience. “So I didn’t know what to expect,” Jobs added.

Historic event in which Steve Jobs introduced the iTunes Music Store, changing forever the way people get their music. “Rip, Mix, Burn” and Apple iTunes Music Store and new iPods introduced (elapsed time 05:01).

Fast forward to today and Apple is working to add streaming music to the iTunes Store, as it is losing ground to Pandora and Spotify. Google is also set to launch a streaming-music service as part of YouTube that would work on desktop and mobile devices. Both Apple and Google hope to release their streaming music services this summer. Apple’s service has been dubbed “iRadio” by the press.

In the Apple business model, the streaming music service would provide a quick way for consumers to buy a song they hear, potentially boosting download sales from iTunes. There would also be revenue sharing with record companies from new audio ads that Apple is planning to add to the free streaming music service.

Apple’s product would be connected to iTunes, and be available on mobile devices.

Apple is working to sign deals with Warner Music, Universal Music Group, Sony Music Group and other music publishers.