The beta for iTunes Match, Apple’s service for bringing all of your music to iCloud, has been released to developers.
The service is part of the release of iTunes 10.5 beta 6.1. iTunes Match scans a user’s music and finds copies of those songs in iCloud, regardless of whether those songs were purchased through iTunes. That music can then be played or streamed via iTunes.
The iTunes Match beta is available now to U.S. developers for $24.99 for a 12 month paid subscription. Developers that jump on iTunes Match during the beta period get an additional three months for free. Developers should back up their iTunes library because “Apple will periodically reset your iCloud library during the beta.”
Apple will face stiff competition for its cloud-based offering from startups like Spotify and Rdio. Apple’s strong relationship with the labels gives it a distinct advantage though as it prepares to push iCloud to the masses.
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