iTunes gets ready for Russia debut, report says

Apple will reportedly hold an event in Moscow tomorrow to launch iTunes in the land of Shostakovich, Tchaikovsky, and Pussy Riot.


Apple's iTunes platform could make its debut in Russia tomorrow.

An Apple PR person in Russia has sent out an event invite to a small number of people in the country for a music event the company plans to host tomorrow night, TechCrunch, which obtained a copy of the invite, is reporting. The invite did not say that iTunes will be launching, but did acknowledge that the iTunes team will be holding the event.

Russia is one of the more difficult digital-music markets to crack. The country has several legitimate download services, including one from search firm Yandex, but is also home to rampant piracy. The Intellectual Property Alliance, an organization dedicated to ending piracy, has placed Russia on its "priority watch list" as a major pirate.

Given that, iTunes availability has lagged. However, reports suggested that Apple would launch its music service in Russia in October. It was quickly pushed back to November, but was again delayed.

Despite the obvious challenges with piracy, Russia is a huge country with huge opportunities for Apple's iTunes platform. If the company can find a way to get Russians to buy music, Apple might find itself a rather profitable market.

CNET has contacted Apple for comment on the TechCrunch report. We will update this story when we have more information.

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About the author

Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.



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