iTunes Music Store hits 100 million song milestone

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Apple's iTunes Music Store has sold 100 million songs, according to a graphic that greets visitors to Apple's Web site home page. "100 million songs have been legally downloaded from the iTunes Music Store. A major milestone for online music," reads the image.

"As we cross this historic milestone, we want to thank our customers, the artists and the music labels who have embraced our dream for iTunes," said Apple CEO Steve Jobs in a statement. "iTunes quickly outpaced the competition and is far and away the world's number one online music service."

Apple first announced at the beginning of July that a countdown from 95 million to 100 million song sold, offering a giveaway promotion to users in the four countries where the iTunes Music Store is available. Apple offered 50 special 20GB iPods to purchasers of each 100,000th song sold. The customer who bought the 100 millionth song -- now identified as Kevin Britten of Hays, Kansas -- received a 17-inch PowerBook, a 40GB iPod and a gift certificate for 10,000 iTunes songs.

When Apple CEO Steve Jobs first introduced the Windows version of the iTunes Music Store last October, he voiced hope that Apple would sell 100 million songs by the time the service reached its one year anniversary on April 28, 2004. The iTunes Music Store fell short of that goal by some 30 million songs, but Jobs still celebrated the anniversary by announcing that the iTunes Music Store had "exceeded [Apple's] wildest expectations" during its first year of operation.

The iTunes Music Store is available to Mac and Windows users in the US, UK, France and Germany. The service offers hundreds of thousands of songs from leading commercial and independent artists, and provides features including music charts, allowances and gift certificates, user-generated "iMix" playlists and much more.

Updated 7/12/04 8:30 AM: Name of 100 millionth song winner identified.

Updated 7/12/04 10:40 AM: Comment from Steve Jobs added.

This story, "iTunes Music Store hits 100 million song milestone" was originally published by PCWorld.

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