On Wednesday, Digital Media News made waves with a report that Apple is preparing to terminate iTunes music downloads within as little as two years. As the report indicates, paid music downloads continue to account for hundreds of millions of dollars of Apple’s worldwide revenue, but the company is grappling with declining sales that will only worsen as streaming strengthens its foothold in the coming years.
Well, maybe not so fast. Today, Apple took the extraordinary step (for Apple) of responding directly to that report. “Our response is that it is not true, we are not shutting down iTunes downloads per your story yesterday,” Apple media executive Tom Neumayr told Digital Music News. The outlet is standing by its story, though, citing inside sources that remain adamant about Apple’s plans. As one source noted, “Of course you can imagine, [the labels] don’t want the rug ripped out from under them.”
In that light, it does make sense why Apple would remain coy about their plans. But that’s a pretty definitive-sounding statement from a company that is usually content to let rumors run their course without an official comment.