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Apple launches iTunes in New Zealand

Apple has finally launched the New Zealand version of its iTunes music store, letting Kiwis download music legally to their iPods.

The iTunes store sells tracks from its two-million song catalogue for $1.79 each, with most albums costing $17.99. Music videos cost $3.59 and games cost $7.99.

New Zealand bands on the site include Shihad, Fat Freddy's Drop and Elemeno P.

It will also have free podcasts from TVNZ, Radio NZ and the Voice Booth, as well as international ones.

Shoppers need a New Zealand credit card to buy from the site, or an iTunes gift card bought from the site by credit card.

Many Kiwi music fans were feeling left out after Apple started up the Australian iTunes store last year. There have been sporadic rumours of an imminent launch since, rumours which reached a fever pitch earlier this week.

Apple needs to negotiate separately with the recording industry in each country to sell music, which is believed to have delayed the New Zealand launch.

The country is the 22nd where iTunes store has launched.

Songs from the iTunes store will play on iPods, but not on other MP3 players without first converting the tracks to MP3 files, a process which is still technically illegal in New Zealand.

Other music sites, such as Digirama, sell songs in the right format for these players, for $1.75 each. Other sites like Amplifier sell music as MP3s which can be played on any MP3 player, but these tend to be independent bands.

It is the tenth digital music store in the country, but it will likely become the dominant player quite quickly, as it has in other markets.

With two million songs in its catalogue, it will be the largest digital music store in New Zealand.-stuff

  • www.apple.co.nz
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    Post to del.icio.us | Digg it.

    ..Then the phones came out in NZ first too, shame they are the most expensive.

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