Last week, I mentioned that Apple was rumored to be purchasing 4-year-old music startup Lala, and now the deal is official. Lala scans users' hard drives and creates an online music library to match, making it easy for users to add songs to their libraries. You can also pay 10 cents for the rights to an unlimited stream of a song — so while a hard copy of the music won't live on your computer, you'll be able to listen to a song as much as you want from the web. The service shares some characteristics with Apple's iTunes, but because it's web based, it doesn't require you to download songs or sync playlists between devices.
According to one article about the acquisition, Apple isn't commenting on its future plans using the technology. Some are speculating that this could be bad news for current Lala users happy with the service's perks, such as being able to listen to the full-length version of any song before purchasing or the 25 free song credits with signup. But if Apple does choose to integrate Lala's technology, it could mean that your entire iTunes library will be available anywhere you can access the Internet — your computer, your smartphone, your iPod, even someone else's gadgets.