Yesterday (May 31) Apple shut down the Lala music streaming service, which it purchased at the end of 2009.
It’s speculated that Apple will use the Lala technology/staff to launch an online music streaming service similar to Spotify soon. How soon? Perhaps at next week’s Worldwide Developer Conference, according to rumors.
Speculated to debut on June 7, the service — if it is coming — would likely be based on Apple’s purchase of Lala six months ago. Lala — which offered “the first and only free fully licensed service to instantly provide anywhere web access to an existing music library such as iTunes” — was purchased by Apple earlier this year. The goal is probably to allow Apple to implement a new iTunes feature that would allow users to stream their purchased media content remotely. In fact, rumors of such a service surfaced earlier this year.
Purportedly, the service would allow iTunes shoppers to build up a digital video collection (music, movies, TV shows, etc.) without having to worry about the intensive storage space involved. iTunes Replay would, per the rumors, stream music, TV shows and movies purchased on iTunes, so you wouldn’t have to download them after purchasing, freeing up hard drive space.
Meanwhile, Apple will issue iTunes Store credits to Lala subscribers with outstanding balances. Subscribers who have under US$10 left in their accounts will receive iTunes Store credits rounded up to the nearest dollar. Subscribers with over $10 left on their accounts will get credits rounded up to the nearest $5.