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iTune-ing In: 100M Songs Sold

It took nearly three months longer than Apple Computer Inc. chief executive Steve Jobs predicted but Apple's iTunes Music Store has sold its 100 millionth song, the company said Monday.

When the market-leading music download store launched April 28, 2003, a confident Jobs forecast that iTunes would sell 100 million songs within a year. However, the service reported selling about 70 million songs by the time it reached its first anniversary.

"As we cross this historic milestone, we want to thank our customers, the artists and the music labels who have embraced our dream for iTunes," said Jobs. "iTunes quickly outpaced the competition and is far and away the world's number one online music service."

The 100 millionth song, "Somersault (Dangermouse remix)" by Zero7 was purchased by Kevin Britten, 20, of Kansas. As the grand prizewinner in Apple's 100 million song countdown, Britten will receive a 17-inch PowerBook, a 40GB iPod, a gift certificate for 10,000 iTunes songs and the opportunity to create his own Celebrity Playlist to be published on the iTunes Music Store.

Downloads purchased from iTunes customers in the United States, France, United Kingdom and Germany were used to calculate total sales, but the company excluded downloads given away as part of iTunes promotions, Apple spokeswoman Liz Einbinder said.

Analyst Phil Leigh of Inside Digital Media said the sale benchmark was significant.

"Compared to any of the other download services or subscription services, they've done far more than anyone else," Leigh said.

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