Apple dumping Lala, could announce major music changes in June

With an eye on a June 7 conference for developers, analysts predict that Apple will announce major news regarding music downloading that would make Lala obsolete. Last year, for example, the WSJ says Apple used the conference as a launch pad for the 3GS version of the iPhone.

Are major changes on the horizon for Apple’s iTunes software and the way we download music from the Internet?

That’s the speculation, as word broke this morning that Apple is shutting down its Lala online music service, which it just purchased in December, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Some executives believe, according to the WSJ, that Apple has devised an internet-powered version of iTunes that would eliminate the need to download songs. With that in place, Apple could go after smaller companies that deliver music to mobile devices using “cloud computing,” or remote-storage systems for downloaded music.

“Whatever they bought Lala for, it is likely to be integrated into iTunes,” said Michael Gartenberg, a partner at technology consulting firm Altimeter Group. “It’s no surprise they’re shutting this down.”

For more on Apple’s moves, and the potential problems it could create for current iTunes users, visit the Wall Street Journal’s official site.

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