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Monday, November 15, 2010, 03:45 pm PT (06:45 pm ET)

WSJ: Apple to announce arrival of Beatles catalog on iTunes

Apple on Tuesday will announce that the iTunes Store will begin carrying music by the legendary rock group The Beatles, The Wall Street Journal has reported.

Citing people familiar with the situation, the site reported Monday evening that Apple's "exciting announcement" would revolve around the arrival of Beatles songs on iTunes. Representatives of the band, as well as their EMI Group record label, were in talks with Apple as recently as last week.

Monday morning, Apple put a teaser on its website, telling customers that the company would have an "exciting announcement from iTunes" Tuesday morning. That led to speculation that Apple could announce a new, cloud-based iTunes service, or a monthly music subscription plan.

Other reports, however, said those products would be unlikely, as Apple does not have the rights required to stream music to customers. Apple has allegedly been in negotiations with record labels for months in an effort to forge a deal.

Rumors of The Beatles finally coming to iTunes are nothing new, but John Lennon's widow Yoko Ono helped to quiet those talks in August, when she said that fans shouldn't hold their breath for a potential deal.

The Beatles have long resisted digital music, instead opting to re-release albums on physical mediums. The band finally released their music digitally on special USB devices, as well as the video game "The Beatles: Rock Band," but iTunes did not come to be.

Rumors of an Apple-Beatles deal became more plausible in recent years, after Apple and Apple Corps made amends and settled a trademark dispute. Previously, the two companies were engaged in a legal battle for years.