While iTunes LP submissions will end this month, existing iTunes LPs will not be depreciated. However, those who have previously purchased LPs will still be able to download its full content package using iTunes Match. According to an internal Apple email obtained by Metro, Apple will stop taking iTunes LP submissions this month.
iTunes LP (referred to in pre-launch press by the code name Cocktail) is a format for interactive album artwork introduced by Apple Inc. on September 9, 2009. While it certainly makes some sense for Apple to put all its eggs in the Apple Music basket, there's nothing in the letter to suggest that Apple will stop selling music, either by track or by album.
LPs could be the first of several major changes for iTunes in a bid to keep up with subscription-based streaming platform Spotify, industry experts say.
Yes, Apple would love it if we all moved to Apple Music for our music needs, but as long as people continue to buy digital albums and tracks in meaningful numbers, iTunes as we know it will continue to exist. Customers can listen to an album and view lyrics, liner notes, band photos, performance videos, and more. Spotify is now reigning in the streaming landscape, with twice as many subscribers as Apple Music, but Apple is expected to eclipse those numbers by this summer.
The anonymous source who leaked the email to Metro told the publication that "It's clear that streaming is the future".
Metro.co.uk says it saw the memo Apple sent to music industry executives.