Users of the iTunes digital music store have downloaded more than 250 million songs, according to Apple. Although users are downloading one and a quarter million songs per day it still doesn't compare with illegal file sharing networks.
iTunes is currently looking at an annual run rate of almost half a billion songs downloaded per year. Steve Jobs states, "When we launched the iTunes Music Store we were hoping to sell a million songs in the first six months—now we're selling over a million songs every day, and we've sold over a quarter billion songs in total. iTunes is leading the way into the digital music era and together with iPod is changing the way millions of music lovers find and enjoy their music."
Apple's iTunes offers iMix playlist sharing, seamless integration with iPod and integrated digital rights management technology. From the appearance of Apple's press releases and marketing campaigns, they seem to be trying to compete with illegal file-sharing networks rather than other download stores, like Rhapsody.
Although the iTunes Music Store features more than one million songs from the major music companies and 600 independent record labels, over 9,000 audiobooks, gift certificates and exclusive music not found anywhere else online, you still cannot buy classic albums from The Beatles, Led Zepelin and many other artist mainstays. Until Apple can convince the music industry that ALL artists should be available on iTunes, it will never be a one-stop shopping destination for music consumers.