Apple iTunes: Changing the Face of Online Music Retailing Industry

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

Case Details:


Case Code : BSTR070 For delivery in electronic format: Rs. 500;
For delivery through courier (within India): Rs. 500 + Rs. 25 for Shipping & Handling Charges


Case Length : 16 Pages
Period : 2003
Organization : Apple Inc.
Pub Date : 2003
Teaching Note : Not Available
Countries : USA
Industry : Software


The case deals with iTunes, an Internet-based music retailing service launched by Apple Computers in early 2003. It provides detailed information about the changing dynamics of the music industry and analyzes the circumstances that led to the emergence of the online music distribution business. It also examines the impact of online music services on the industry in light of the problem of growing music piracy. The efforts made by several companies to launch legal services, and the reasons for their failure, are explored. The case then describes how Apple's iTunes provided a viable solution to the problems faced by the music industry and the customers. Finally, the case discusses the challenges facing iTunes, and its future prospects, in light of Apple's decision to launch its Windows version.


Understand the structure and functioning of the music industry and analyze the evolving dynamics of the same


  Page No.
Apple Spells Success With iTUNES 1
Background Note - Emergence of Online Music Istribution 2
The Debate on Online Music Distribution 3
iTUNES Provides a Solution 5
iTUNES - Facing Competition 7
The Future of iTUNES - Not Sweet Music All Along 9
Exhibits 11


iTunes, music retailing, Apple Computers, 2003, changing, dynamics, emergence, online music distribution, music services, music piracy, Apple's iTunes, Windows version

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