Beatles On Your iPod?

by Janet Meyer Nov 28, 2006

On May 10, two days after Apple Computer won the Apple vs. Apple trademark dispute, quoted the vice president of iTunes as saying “We certainly will do everything we can to get them on iTunes.” Coming right after the lawsuit, and with the long history of resistance by Apple Corps, a lot of readers figured that pigs would fly first.

Fortune suggests that pigs are starting to sprout wings. It’s unclear yet whether or not they’ll learn to fly.

There are still several details that are being worked out, and it’s quite possible that Apple and Apple will never reach an agreement. Apple Computer reportedly wants a period of exclusivity with Apple Corps. Apple Corps expects multiple millions of dollars in marketing from Apple Computer.

Apple Computer would like Apple Corps to endorse the iPod. The idea is to allow Beatle’s music to be used in a commercial.

There are also multiple rumors of the Beatles making a branded iPod.

Many readers have responded to articles about the Beatles and iPods by questioning why Apple would be so interested in this group. They think that the Beatles only appeal to an older demographic, one that doesn’t download music. Others think that this could be a good way to convince older listeners to download music.

The New York Times quotes some interesting statistics regarding older music lovers and our listening habits. In 2005, 25.5% of music was sold to consumers 45 and older. Older teens accounted for only 12% of sales. There is speculation that this is because teens are more likely to use free download sites.

Though older fans are not downloading in the same numbers that younger users are, 24% of internet music sales are to listeners ages 50 and older. Convincing people who are already purchasing CDs online to download some of their music might not be such a stretch.

The Beatles don’t only appeal to older users. Beatles music is said to account for the most illegal downloads of any band. This certainly indicates that people experienced in downloading music are fans of the Beatles.

Fortune quotes the head of EMI North America as stating at a recent industry conference that the Beatles would soon be available online. He didn’t say which company would release the digital downloads, causing speculation at that time that Apple Corps might try to develop its own store to compete with iTMS.

Fortune also suggests that Apple and Apple wanted to make an announcement to coincide with Apple Corps release of Love. For now you can listen to it free in what they call a “Global Listening Event”. All you have to do is go to, register, and give your location. At the time I registered I could find no indication of how long this “Global Listening Event” will be available.

It’s still to early to know whether or not this Apple Corps and Apple Computer will work together. A spokesperson for Apple Computer has said that they won’t comment on rumors. While Fortune has reported the possibility of a deal, the article doesn’t say where they got the information from.

What do you think? Will pigs be flying soon, or is this just a rumor? It is certainly giving the Beatle’s new release a lot of publicity.

It will be interesting to see how this story develops.




  • According to the link, the “Global Listening Event has Eneded”.  Boo-urns to that.

    Chicken2nite had this to say on Nov 28, 2006 Posts: 79
  • Who cares? And wouldn’t it be more interesting by far to have the whole Beatles cataloge re-released (so the “older users” can buy yet another white album wink ) after some serious remastering, on SACD-Hybrid? Seriously, if there is something that has reached full saturation it is bad sounding Beatles recordings. It is incredible what sensitive remastering can archieve with ancient recordings (just listen to the Little Richard SACD from Mobile Fidelity), just reselling compressed versions is clearly the wrong approach.

    Bad Beaver had this to say on Nov 28, 2006 Posts: 371
  • I remember talking to my sister’s husband, who was 19 at the time.  I mentioned John Lennon, and he said, “Who?”  I said, “You know, the Beatles.”  “Who?”

    For reals.

    Beeblebrox had this to say on Nov 28, 2006 Posts: 2220
  • Apple needs to look at it’s demographic data before forking ANYTHING out to get the Beetles on iTunes… Will it sell? Sell enough to recoup expenses?

    I’m with BB on this one…

    xwiredtva had this to say on Nov 28, 2006 Posts: 172
  • Will it sell? Sell enough to recoup expenses?


    Benji had this to say on Nov 28, 2006 Posts: 927
  • Considering they are the 3rd most popular artist in history, I’m pretty sure Apple will want to do this. 

    #3. Your sister’s husband had to be pulling your chain. He seriously would have to have lived under a rock his whole life to not have even heard of the Beatles. If somehow he is telling the truth, his ignorance is uncomprehensible and I pity your sister.

    Le Master had this to say on Nov 29, 2006 Posts: 6
  • I have ALL Beatles albums on my ‘Pod, so where is the problem getting the Fab Four in iPods?

    Buy the CDs and rip. That way you can have an archival quality 320kbps AAC/MP3 without DRM troubles, see? All the bass and trebles are retained like the 16-bit PCM on CDs.

    Robomac had this to say on Nov 30, 2006 Posts: 846
  • BTW I do that with all my jazz collection and it sounds amazingly real (from the bottom up, I say).

    Robomac had this to say on Nov 30, 2006 Posts: 846
  • The idea that elders will “learn” how to download songs is a little ambitious.  Teaching my Grandmother how to use email was difficult enough…

    jdaik had this to say on Dec 01, 2006 Posts: 1
  • The idea that elders will “learn” how to download songs is a little ambitious.  Teaching my Grandmother how to use email was difficult enough…

    It depends on the “elder”.  I’m old enough to be a grandma, but I’m pretty tech-oriented. So are most of my friends my age. My Mom and her friends emailed just fine in their seventies.

    Beatles don’t actually seem to appeal much to the seventy-year-olds, though. They are more of the middle-age generation (then again, that might be who you’re referring to.) Beatles music is still the most illegally-downloaded stuff on the internet, so somebody who likes them sure knows how to download them.

    Janet Meyer had this to say on Dec 02, 2006 Posts: 36
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