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If you've been pining and praying for Apple's impending music Event to finally herald the advent of iTunes Music streaming from the clouds on high, you might end up a wee bit disappointed, especially if Peter Kafka over at All Things D is correct.
According to Kafka, we're most likely going to see a major overhaul of iTunes next week, but instead of the from-the-cloud-service that many of us have been dreaming of, the changes to the venerable media application may be aimed more towards social media functionality and the way in which we purchase media from the iTunes Store.
Why no streaming?
Kafka cites a number of facts, chief of which is that Apple has yet to sign any new licensing deals with their music partners that would allow the catalogues we are currently able to download on to our computers to be streamed to our devices anywhere we go. It could be that the negotiations have been going on in secret--Apple does, after all, enjoy a bit of mystery in their upcoming product stew--but it seems unlikely. Just look to the recent rumors that they're attempting to negotiate dirt cheap TV show rentals for the iTV. It's easy to see that attempting to launch a product without at least a little product information leaking out has become close to impossible for the company. In recent years, Apple has become to big and too popular to plug every single leak out there when a product is coming down the pike. They're simply too many ardent fanboys out there that just gotta know what's going on.
Kafka's sources speculate that next week when Steve Jobs takes to the stage at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Theater, it'll be to announce, among other things, that iTunes will have some pretty tight integration with a number of the social media applications many of us are already familiar with:
"...people I’ve talked to are making informed guesses. That said, music sources tell me they’re expecting a lightweight, Web-based version of the iTunes store. The new version would be designed to synch up easily with the rest of the Internet and make it much easier for customers to share their musical tastes (but not songs) with friends."
The All Things D piece also mentions that there is industry buzz around a rumor that wireless music syncing may also be soon be enjoyed by all iOS device users, and not those who have chosen to walk the rocky, but rewarding path of the jailbreaker.
So, to sum up, if Kafka and his sources are correct, our attention is being called to bear on the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Theater to reveal that iTunes is gaining a "Like" button and we don't need to worry about our co-workers stealing borrowing our sync cables anymore? That's a little bit underwhelming to say the least. Let's just hope that some other predictions about what will be revealed during next week's event prove true--we could use some more Apple excitement to balance out all the mediocre that could be close to being laid at our feet