Beatles on iTunes: 450,000 albums, 2 million singles in first week


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When Apple Inc. announced last week that the Beatles’ catalog would at long last be available for legal downloading on iTunes, many skeptics groused that the two entities had come together too late: Everyone who cares about the group’s music long ago found a way to store it on their PCs, laptops or MP3 players.

Apparently not.

Apple announced Tuesday that 450,000 Beatles albums and 2 million individual tracks were downloaded during the first week they went up online. That translates to well more than $8 million spent on Beatles downloads out of the gate, using the single album download price of $12.99 and $1.29 per song. It doesn’t take into account several double albums priced at $19.99 or the digital Beatles box set that iTunes offers for $149.


At the same time the Beatles finally joined the digital world, Amazon began discounting the remastered physical CDs that were released last year, with individual albums now selling for $7.99, double sets for $11.99 and $12.99 and the 16-CD stereo box set priced at $129.99, making the tangible versions cheaper than the virtual ones. Consequently, six Beatles titles are in the Top 100 of Amazon’s ranking of its bestselling music titles as of Tuesday.

-- Randy Lewis