I’ve been using iTunes Mach for about a week now and it is well worth the $25 dollars. Here’s why.
All your music gets added to iCloud. Unlike other services, you don’t have to upload it all. iTunes only uploads what it can’t find a match for on their servers. This significantly cut down on the time it would have taken for all my music to upload. I think it was more like days with Google or Amazon’s cloud sites and only hours for iTunes Match.
All your music streams to other installs of iTunes or iOS 5 devices. You don’t have to download anything, you just authorize iTunes and it adds all your music in seconds. Click play on a song in iCloud and it streams in seconds.
Download Your Music
If you don’t want to stream a song, you don’t have to. Click the download button and it’ll save a copy on your computer.
Source doesn’t matter.
If you purchased your music in iTunes, iTunes Match will match it. Same goes if you bought your music via the Amazon Mp3 store or Google Play. It’ll also match songs you ripped from CDs or may have obtained other ways. It’s completely forgiving.
Unprotect Your Music
Back in the early days of the iTunes Music Store, when you downloaded a song, it was protected. These protected songs only worked in iTunes or on the iPod. They are not eligible for playing through any other device or streaming service. However, with iTunes Match, if the songs are matched, just delete the protected version from your computer and download a new version from the iCloud. Protection gone.
If you buy your music from different sources, or have stuff that you ripped on your own, chances are they’re not all the same quality. With iTunes Match, just remove the lower quality songs from your iTunes and download the better one from iCloud. Easy as pie.
Keep it all with you when you go.
After one year, if you choose not to re-subscribe to iTunes Match, you don’t lose any music that is on your computer. Everything is yours to keep. The unprotected files and higher quality songs are yours. Apple isn’t going to ask for them back.