Apple CEO Steve Jobs discusses the iTunes Music Store, the new digital music service that was launched today, in what Fortune magazine says is an exclusive interview in the May 12 issue.
Appearing on newsstands May 5, the article, “Songs in the Key of Steve,” by Fortune senior writer Devin Leonard, also looks at the potential for success — and failure — of the new service. Leonard talks with music industry executives and digital music leaders in the article, which will appear online today.
“This will go down in history as a turning point for the music industry,” Jobs tells Fortune. “This is landmark stuff. I can’t overestimate it.”
And, according to the Fortune article, the iTunes Music Store has one advantage over other services: a copy protection scheme that has won Apple the ability to offer users songs from all five major music companies. That’s “something other digital music services have failed to do, even as the music industry continues to lose staggering dollars to digital piracy,” the article says.
“I don’t think it was more than a 15-second decision in my mind (to license music to Apple) once Steve started talking,” Sony CEO Andrew Lack told Fortune.
However, some people think that the Apple service is too expensive, though songs are 99 cents each. “If you make a really cool playlist of 200 songs on Rhapsody, you pay only $9.95 a month,” RealNetworks CEO Rob Glaser tells Fortune. “If you use Apple, it’s $200. Maybe guys like Steve and me can afford that, but I’m trying to run a service for everyone else too.”