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Access to Apple's iTunes goes bananas

And Orange broadband completes the fruitbowl

Top three mobile application threats

Apple's discussion forums are alive with users who are mysteriously unable to access the company's iTunes Music Store.

The problems appear to have started about ten days ago, when one dixiechicksfan posted: "Everytime I try to connect to the music store, it says the connection has timed out. I was just looking at the music store 2 weeks ago! I don't know how to fix this problem."

Many, though not all, of the musically bereft are Orange broadband subscribers. People in the US and in Australia also seem to be affected.

Some have posted messages saying Orange support has acknowledged the problem and it trying to resolve things. One even says a support person implied the security alert two weeks ago was behind the problems.

However, Orange's PR has flatly denied this, and told us that it doesn't know anything about people having difficulty accessing iTunes.

"We haven't changed our settings at all," a spokeswoman said this morning. "And I don't know anything about any customer complaints."

Shame it hasn't checked its own message boards, also replete with people complaining about being cut off from iTunes, and other secure sites.

Users on the Apple forum have run through all the usual diagnostic tricks - checking for common operating systems, recent Windows updates, common ISPs, rebooting hardware - without finding a definitive solution.

One exasperated music fan writes:

I'm fed up and angry at missing out on my weekend itunes binge. Definitely going to sign up to another music store today.

Another says:

OK, i've downloaded the latest itunes, rebooted and instead of getting: "itunes cannot connect to music Store, connection timed out" (this was the message before updating IT), i now get a different error message with a number and the previous one as well!

Sort it out Apple!! i've done everything on the ITMS help section!!

We've been in touch with Apple to find out if it knows what the problem is, but so far the company is maintaining a stony silence. ®

Top three mobile application threats

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