Apple iTunes: Over 3 Billion Served


A rather astonishing little tidbit slipped by barely noticed this week: Apple’s iTunes Music Store sold its 3 Billionth song. "Purchased and downloaded" according to the Apple press release.

iTunes has now passed Amazon and Target, and is the #3 music retailer, behind Wal-Mart and Best Buy. The ranking was based on units sold, not revenue from sales. The catalog now has over five million songs, 550 television shows and 500 movies.

What is fascinating about this milestone is the way it occurred:  iTunes launched in April 2003, and it did not hit a billion songs until nearly 3 years later — February 2006.

It took only a year until Apple surpassed the 2 billion song mark in February 2007. The 3rd billionth song was downloaded in July 2007 — just 6 months later.   

In other words, sales at Apple iTunes Music Store are accelerating.

iTunes Store Tops Three Billion Songs

Apple, July 31, 2007

Apple: iTunes hits milestone, selling more than 3 billion songs
Associated Press
Article Launched: 07/31/2007 10:54:31 AM PDT

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What's been said:

Discussions found on the web:
  1. John Thompson commented on Aug 2

    Yeah well, Apple iTunes rules! Insta jute box x a zillion!

  2. John Thompson commented on Aug 2

    I LOVE how the giant album art pops onto your screen when you click the album art pic in the lower left corner!

    THEN, every random song that changes pops up the new giant sized album cover on your screen and lists the song title at the top.

    Can’t wait until the new screensaver is like that tower of albums from the old commercial! Guess you will be able to click on them as they fly by and they will open iTunes and play.

    People who use this program are in love. Hope they don’t get greedy with it. Because, if they don’t, they will continue to ramp up sales. It is fantastic.

  3. Winston Munn commented on Aug 4

    John Thompson: Don’t sugar coat it, kid. Tell us what you really think.

  4. Mike commented on Aug 4

    “There’s a general assumption, partly created by Apple, that Macs are less vulnerable to viruses and hackers than PCs. You’ve said the opposite, that Macs are particularly insecure. Why’s that?

    There are a number of reasons that Macs are especially easy to attack. First, the whole Mac design philosophy is that everything is easy to use. You just plug stuff in and it works. The flip side is that features that make life easy for the user also make it easy for hackers.

    Take [Microsoft’s] Internet Explorer. If you go to some Web site with a weird file format, IE doesn’t know how to deal with it. But with [Apple’s] Safari, it’s supposed to do everything. It can launch around 30 programs to help you, like movie programs or calendar programs. That means a bug in the movie program or the calendar program can also allow you to exploit Safari remotely. So these things that make Safari easy to use also expose it to more remote attacks.

    They also don’t do some other basic things that are more technical, like randomizing memory. When you load a PC program, everything is in a different spot every time. But when you launch a Mac program, everything is in the same spot every time. That makes exploits much easier.

    Though Mac vulnerabilities are increasingly being discussed by researchers, Macs in general and the iPhone in particular haven’t yet been targeted by actual cyber-criminals. Why not?

    Bad guys aren’t yet targeting Macs because they want to maximize their time. That means writing viruses that target 95% of computers rather than 5%. Apple currently has around 3.5% of the market, but its market share is growing by around 35% a year. As Mac’s numbers creep up to 30% or 40%, cyber-criminals will start asking whether it’s better to spend two weeks writing a bug for Windows or just a couple days to write one for Macs.

    So Apple may soon be a victim of its own success. And every time someone like me finds a bug, it just gets more people looking.”

  5. andiron commented on Aug 4

    should the upcoming recession not hit consumer discetionary stuff that apple makes?
    I think it does.

    reco: short apple (target $75)

  6. MikeInAZ commented on Aug 4


    Just because Apple is easy to use doesn’t mean it’s easy to hack. The difference between Mac & PC for me is that their defaults are much more sensible and secure. Easy to use does not equal simple.
    (alpha geeks are moving to mac)

    Also your argument that it’s not worth the hackers’ time create a virus for OSX? Are you sure? The first hacker to create a virus that spreads on OSX will become a legend.

    And Safari is many more times secure than IE. With IE, the browser is so intermingled with the Windows, that if you can compromise the browser, you’ll be able to compromise the whole system. I have yet to see that with OS X.

    Yes, every system is susceptible to it, but not for the reasons you listed.

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