Feeds

Lights out at Lala - Apple shutters music service

Is iTunes' future cloudy?

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Apple has shut down Lala, the cloudy online music service it acquired less than five months ago, reanimating the long-running rumor that an iTunes subscription service is right around the corner.

Lala's demise is no surprise. As soon as Lala began listing its address as 1 Infinite Loop, Cupertino, it was only a matter of time until its smarts and technology would be absorbed into the Jobsian borg, and its subscription-based service would bite the digital dust.

Lala's home page, announcing the shutdown

Tha-tha-tha-that's all, folks!

The site will go dark on May 31, but Lala subscribers - or "members," in Lalaspeak - won't be S.O.L. Apple will provide iTunes credit for money they've spent on the site - but, seeing as how Lala charged 10¢ a tune and iTunes songs run 69¢ (exceptionally rare), 99¢, or $1.29, there's hardly a one-to one correspondence.

For members with online-wallet balances or unredeemed gift cards, Apple is more generous, providing either full iTunes credit or simply a refund check.

Presumably, Apple and the erstwhile Lalalians are working behind the scenes to upgrade the iTunes Store - but don't automatically assume that the brains behind Lala will remain at 1 Infinite Loop. Remember, for example, that after Apple acquired chipmaker PA Semi back in 2008, its guiding lights bailed to create their own start-up - which Google bought just last week.

As expected, no one in Cupertino is talking about whether Apple is planning a subscription-based service in which your tunes, as did Lala's, will reside in the cloud. As comforting as it may be to have your own physical tune files on your own physical hard drive, a subscription service does have the unarguable advantage of allowing you to access all your tunes from all your devices - mobile, desktop, or otherwise (think car audio).

And remember that over in Catawba County, North Carolina, Apple's cloudy $1bn data center is inching closer to completion every day. ®

Bootnote

Lala began as a CD-swapping service back in 2006. Remember CDs? Round, shiny things that scratched easily?

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
Brit telcos warn Scots that voting Yes could lead to HEFTY bills
BT and Co: Independence vote likely to mean 'increased costs'
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Will BlackBerry make a comeback with its SQUARE smartphones?
Plus PC PIMs from company formerly known as RIM
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
EE buys 58 Phones 4u stores for £2.5m after picking over carcass
Operator says it will safeguard 359 jobs, plans lick of paint
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Google+ GOING, GOING ... ? Newbie Gmailers no longer forced into mandatory ID slurp
Mountain View distances itself from lame 'network thingy'
Vodafone to buy 140 Phones 4u stores from stricken retailer
887 jobs 'preserved' in the process, says administrator PwC
Bonking with Apple has POUNDED mobe operators' wallets
... into submission. Weve squeals, ditches payment plans
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.