by Joe White
December 15, 2011
It's been a crazy day for Apple fans in the United Kingdom, Europe and Australia. Earlier today, we heard that Apple had launched - or rather, was in the process of launching - iTunes Match in the three countries, despite the company having previously noted that its iCloud-powered music service wouldn't be available until next year. It was (and is, we think) still possible to force iTunes in the UK, Europe and Australia into displaying the iTunes Match pane in the application, and it's even possible to subscribe to the service. However, it's not possible to add computers to iTunes Match (an error message, below, is displayed) and furthermore, we've heard that Apple representatives are issuing refunds to Brits, Europeans and Australians who've subscribed to the seemingly accidentally-launched service. After subscribing to iTunes Match earlier today (the prices for the UK, Australia and Europe are £21.99, AU$39.99 and €24.99, all per year), I tried to enable the service and continually received the above message. Though, to begin with, some suggested that Apple was in the process of rolling-out the service internationally, an Apple representative has since contacted a MacRumors forum frequenter, noting that customers who subscribed to iTunes Match in the UK, Australia and Europe will receive refunds.
Clearly, this suggests that the launch was purely accidental.It's a shame, because I was quite excited earlier today when I thought Apple had thrown a curveball, and - without any of us expecting it - had launched iTunes Match here, in the UK, and in numerous other countries. I've been looking forward to taking the service for a spin. But alas - it's not to be (at least not yet). Let us know if you subscribed to iTunes Match in the UK, Australia or Europe and have been unable (or surprisingly able) to activate the service in the comments below.