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What Is Apple's Huge iTunes Surprise?

We break down the most likely scenarios for tomorrow's announcement

November 15, 2010 12:40 PM ET

Apple is teasing a huge iTunes announcement on its website, with details to be announced at 10 a.m. ET tomorrow. Many in the music industry have expected Apple to launch a cloud-based music service of some kind ever since the company bought and then shuttered the streaming music site Lala.com. So here are three possibilities:

1) We're rooting for an all-you-can-eat subscription service: about $10 a month to access the entire iTunes catalog on your computer, iPod and iPhone. With the power of the Apple brand and the millions of credit cards numbers Apple has on file, an iTunes service would instantly legitimize music subscriptions — and change the record business forever.

2) The second option is slightly less revolutionary: Apple may launch an iTunes feature that will allow you to listen to your iTunes library remotely — on any computer, iPhone, iPod Touch or other device like the Apple TV. But would this feature live up to Apple's claim that tomorrow will be a day "that you'll never forget"?

3) What if it isn't about music at all? Since Apple has reportedly been putting massive resources behind new server farms for cloud services, they could well be planning a Netflix-style video-streaming subscription service. Or even music and movies together.

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