Apple iTunes Match "Streaming" Music Service is Misleading

Apple's new iTunes Match, which just launched today as a streaming service, does not actually let users stream music to their phones, but instead requires users to download songs in order to listen to them.

When most people think of streaming, they envision a process that does not entail downloading a file that takes up space on a hard drive, mobile device or other type of storage unit. 

"Once your music is in iCloud, you can stream and store it to any of your devices," the Apple website states. While it does say that you can store it to your devices, it doesn't clarify that in order to listen to the song, you must first download it. 

What iTunes Match does give its users is peace of mind if one device goes missing or breaks. With all of your music saved on iCloud, you will always be able to retrieve those files. 

Other music services, such as Spotify, Rhapsody, Amazon's Cloud Drive and Google's soon-to-launch Music Store, are truly streaming services. Back in August, digerati debated whether or not it's acceptable to call iTunes Match a streaming service, which prompted a response from Apple stating that in order to access your cloud-based music, you must store it on an iPad, iPhone or other compatible device. Still, Apple continues to describe the service as streaming.

Within an hour of launching, iTunes Match started blocking new registrations due to "overwhelming demand."