Jobs: iTunes to fall short of 100 million song mark

Apple CEO Steve Jobs says that the iTunes Music Store is likely to fall short of the 100 million song mark the company had hoped it would reach by its first anniversary. The news comes from a report published by the Wall Street Journal (subscription required.)

On Monday Apple lauded the iTunes Music Store's 50 millionth song sale. The company said that the iTunes Music Store is selling 2.5 million songs a week, compared to half a million songs per week last September -- when the iTunes Music Store was still exclusive to Mac OS X users -- and 1.5 million per week last December, after the Windows version's launch.

The 50 million mark is still well below the 100 million that Jobs said the company had hoped to sell by the iTunes Music Store's first anniversary, which is coming up at the end of April, 2004. Jobs told the interviewer that Apple wasn't "going to make that number," and added that at its current rate, the iTunes Music Store will likely "have sold 70 million to 75 million songs" by its first anniversary, instead.

Yesterday's 50 million song announcement doesn't include songs redeemed through a promotional program offered by Pepsi in early February, which offers soda drinkers a one in three chance to find a winning code reedemable for a free iTunes Music Store song. The codes have been placed under the bottlecaps of 20-ounce Pepsi, Diet Pepsi and Sierra Mist bottles, as well as from fountain beverage cups from 7-11 convenience stores.

Up to 100 million songs could be redeemed as part of the promotion, but Pepsi seems far short of that goal. Jobs said that the promotion redemptions "aren't what we thought they might be," and said that distribution of bottles with the code-caps has been delayed.

The promotional program was announced last October when Apple unveiled its second-generation iTunes Music Store and iTunes for Windows, and was launched during last month's SuperBowl with a television ad campaign featuring young Pepsi drinkers who had been investigated by the RIAA for downloading pirated music.

The promotion runs through the end of March and requires winners to redeem their codes by the end of April. While bottles containing the caps have been distributed to many areas, the promotion has also been plagued with delays as regional bottlers have been unable to get the specially capped bottles into some locations.

This story, "Jobs: iTunes to fall short of 100 million song mark" was originally published by PCWorld.

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