Apple Had 'Worked On' Offering a High-Definition Music Format
In an interview with AllThingsD, recording artist Neil Young revealed that he had discussed high definition music formats with Apple's Steve Jobs prior to his death.
The interview is summarized by CNet, in which Young claims that MP3s have just "5 percent of the data present in the original recording." Young is concerned that there is no suitable high definition available to consumers.
Higher definition music, of course, would require much larger files. Young reportedly approached Apple and specifically Steve Jobs about it:
When asked if Young had approached Apple about the idea, Young said that he had, in fact, met with Jobs and was "working on it," but that "not much" ended up happening to the pursuit.
Of note, Young made mention that Jobs was a vinyl fan, despite having helmed the company that would spearhead the way people listened to and purchased digital music.
Apple presently offers their iTunes Music store at a quality of 256 kbps AACs. Apple does support a lossless audio format that can be used on their iPods and iPhones, but these files take up considerably more space than standard AAC files, and are not sold on the iTunes store. Based on the interview, it seems there is no present interest from Apple in such an offering.