iTunes tops 1 billion downloads

Posted by Wolfgang Gruener

Apple today announced that its iTunes music stores has surpassed one billion music downloads. It took the company not quite three years to achieve this milestone and currently adds about three million downloads each day.

West Bloomfield, Michigan, resident Alex Ostrovsky is credited with the 1 billionth download and will receive a 20" iMac, 10 fifth generation iPods and a $10,000 iTunes gift card good as grand prize. Apple also said that the company will establish a scholarship in Ostrowsky's name at the Juilliard School of Music.

"I hope that every customer, artist and music company executive takes a moment today to reflect on what we've achieved together during the past three years," said Apple CEO Steve Jobs. "Over one billion songs have now been legally purchased and downloaded around the globe, representing a major force against music piracy and the future of music distribution as we move from CDs to the Internet."

iTunes claims to currently list more than two million music tracks, 3500 music videos, 35,000 podcasts and 16,000 audio books. According to Jobs, 15 million videos have been purchased via the service so far.

Besides iTunes, there is another milestone arriving within a week: The Firefox web browser is nearing the 150 million mark. The download counter lists just over 147 million downloads at this time; about two to three million people are downloading the software every week.