Apple is trying to broaden the reach of the cloud-based music service that will be part of its new iCloud offering. The company is negotiating international license agreements for the music to be stored in its cloud, potentially opening up its "iTunes match" offering to new markets in Europe and beyond. CNET News reports that the deal could be announced as soon as Tuesday, when the California-based computer and media giant is expected to unveil its new iPhone 5.
The deals are intended to bolster Apple's cloud-computing service for home users, as other competitors intrude on the market for digital music storage.
Apple said that only music bought "from iTunes" can be transferred to the cloud and shared with other devices--a fact that may limit iCloud's allure for music aficionados who have transferred gigabytes of music from legally purchased CDs to their computers. Apple's answer to that is "iTunes Match," which allows users to store their "entire collection," including music ripped from CDs, on iCloud servers for $24.99 a year.
International licensing deals would open the iTunes match service to France, the U.K., and Germany, CNET said.
The service around which all this is based, iCloud, hasn't even been unveiled yet. But it could be coming very soon.