iTunes Store now offers 90-second song previews

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As Macworld reported it would last month, Apple has now updated the iTunes Store with 90-second-previews for songs longer than two and a half minutes. That’s right: you can now warm up your coffee or tea in the microwave in less time than it takes for you to preview a song.

While we’re sure Apple had hoped to roll out the new, longer music previews back in September, apparently the National Music Publishers Association and Broadcast Music insisted upon further negotiations for Apple to obtain the necessary licenses for the extended samples.

Right now, the 90-second previews are available only in the U.S. version of the store, where they are available on both the desktop and iOS versions of the store, though not yet for all songs that would seemingly qualify. Everywhere else—and in the U.S. store for songs shorter than two and a half minutes—30 second previews remain the standard.

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At a Glance
  • Pros

    • New social network for discovering music
    • HD TV show rentals
    • A few more customizable, useful interface options
    • Smarter album art list view
    • Noticeable performance improvements


    • Ping feels unfinished
    • Other headline features won't mature for some time
    • Senseless interface changes harm usability
    • Ringtone features removed
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