It’s a sad day for Lala fans. As per the announcement made back on April 30th, Apple will be pulling the curtain on the online music site. If you recall, Apple purchased the site back in December 2009 after the site ran into financial difficulty. The initial news came as a shock because Lala was in the midst of making a major deal with Google through their partnership to create the Music Onebox Service. They were also working with Facebook to create a system where users could send musical gifts to friends via the social networking site.
So what was the big deal about Lala? The streaming music site allowed users to access their music via cloud computing. All members had to do was pony up a dime and they had unlimited access to a song for their online enjoyment. If the user wanted to keep the party going offline or wanted to download the song onto an mp3 player, the $.10 would be added as a credit to the song’s purchase and the person would pay the remainder of the balance.
While Apple has yet to unveil what exactly it has planned for Lala. Many have been speculating that Apple will be utilizing the engineers and architects of the soon-to-be defunct service to create a cloud-based version of iTunes. Current users can still access their accounts, but the site isn’t allowing new signups.
To ensure that Lala users weren’t left holding the bag ala the imeem/MySpace fiasco, Apple has provided credit to Lala users who had purchased music on the site. The credits are redeemable on iTunes which could prove to be a headache to folks that had purchased all their music on Lala. Recreating a playlist built from hundreds or thousands of songs can be time consuming and tedious.
With only a week before Apple’s yearly WWDC, it wouldn’t be surprising to hear an announcement regarding the future of iTunes. So for now we bid farewell to Lala and await Apple’s next move in the lucrative music downloading market.Category: web 2.0 | Tags: apple, cloud computing, facebook, imeem, itunes, lala, music, Music Onebox, myspace, WWDC