According to various reports, Apple seems to have accidentally launched iTunes Match internationally.
Users in Canada, Europe, Australia and the U.K reported that they were able to signup for iTunes Match service, but they were not able to use the service.
MacRumors reports that Apple has started issuing refunds to users who signed up for the service in these countries. Beau Giles, a MacRumors forum member, reports that he received the following email from iTunes store support:
I apologize for this Beau but as of the moment, iTunes Match is only available to Brazil and United States. iTunes Match will not function if the customer’s account is not a United States or Brazil account. I have reversed the charge for “iTunes Match”. In five to seven business days, a credit of $34.99 should be posted to the credit card that appears on the receipt for that purchase.
Apple had launched iTunes Match service on November 14th in the US. Apple had unveiled iTunes Match along with iOS 5 and iCloud at the WWDC 2011 Keynote address in June. It allows users to store their entire music collection (up to 25,000 songs), including songs that they’ve ripped from CDs or purchased from anywhere else in iCloud.
Here’s how it works:
iTunes determines which songs in your collection are available in the iTunes Store. Any music with a match is automatically added to your iCloud library for you to listen to anytime, on any device. Since there are more than 18 million songs in the iTunes Store, most of your music is probably already in iCloud. All you have to upload is what iTunes can’t match. Which is much faster than starting from scratch. And all the music iTunes matches plays back at 256-Kbps iTunes Plus quality — even if your original copy was of lower quality.
It is available in the US for $24.99 per year and based on last night’s accidental launch, it looks like iTunes Match will cost £21.99 per year in the UK, €24.99 in other parts of Europe, $27.99 per year in Canada and A$34.99 per year in Australia.
It was widely expected that Apple will launch iTunes Match service in other countries before the end of the year, so with just over two weeks to go until the end of 2011, it will be interesting to see if Apple will launch it soon after last night’s misstep.
Are you planning on subscribing to iTunes Match? Let us know in the comments below.