iTunes as a music player for the Macintosh has been available since 2001. But the iTunes Store was something completely new: An online store that allowed music fans to purchase and download their favorite music, by the song or by the album.
While the concept wasn't new, Apple was able to do something no one else had been able to do successfully: persuade all the major record labels to sell downloadable music online from a single store.
During the Macworld San Francisco 2003 keynote address, Steve Jobs said, "We were able to negotiate landmark deals with all of the major labels." The iTunes Store launched with 200,000 music tracks from the five major record labels, with each track costing 99 cents, no subscription required.
The initial version of the iTunes Store allowed users to preview a 30-second segment of any song, download music for use on up to three Macs, and transfer the music to any iPod. It also allowed unlimited burning of music tracks to CDs.