UK music lovers eagerly awaiting their remastered Beatles CDs look set to be disappointed with a nationwide postal strike delaying the delivery of pre-ordered discs.

A week-long chain of 24-hour strikes by Communication Workers Union members across Britain is likely to delay deliveries by up to four days as drivers and depot workers take industrial action over jobs (not Apple CEO Steve Jobs).

Rumours abound that Jobs will announce that the entire Beatles music catalogue will be made available via iTunes at an event in San Francisco later today. Also on the agenda are new models of iPod and possibly a new version of iTunes software and services.

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However, even if that turns out to be true iTunes has not made available pre-orders - so Beatles fans must instead either wait on Apple's event/announcement schedule or pop down to a record shop as old fashioned as Ringo Starr's sunglasses.

Sir Paul McCartney has blamed music giant EMI for the delays that have prevented The Beatles back catalogue appearing legally on download services such as iTunes.

"We were having problems with iTunes - well not iTunes, EMI was the problem - with downloading, which we'd like to do because that's how a lot of people get their music," Sir Paul told the NME.

John Lennon widow Yoko Ono apparently let the secret loose yesterday when saying on Sky News: "The whole of the Beatles back catalogue will be made available to buy on iTunes".

Beatles on iTunes Abbey Road

The Beatles albums remastered include: Please Please Me, With The Beatles, A Hard Day's Night, Beatles For Sale, Help!, Rubber Soul, Revolver, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, Magical Mystery Tour, The Beatles* (aka The White Album), Yellow Submarine, Abbey Road, Let It Be, and Past Masters.

The stereo albums have been remastered by Guy Massey, Steve Rooke, Sam Okell with Paul Hicks and Sean Magee. All CD packages contain original vinyl artwork and liner notes, extensive archival photos.

The Beatles final album `Abbey Road` is shaping up to be the most popular of the reissues of the entire Beatles catalogue this week, reports

‘Abbey Road' is leading the pack at Amazon. Then comes ‘Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band', ‘The White Album, ‘Rubber Soul' and ‘Revolver'. Next is the compilation ‘Past Masters' followed by ‘Let It Be', ‘Magical Mystery Tour', ‘A Hard Day's Night', ‘Please Please Me' ‘Help', ‘With The Beatles', ‘Beatles For Sale' and (not surprisingly last) ‘Yellow Submarine'.

Additional reporting by Nick Spence, Macworld.

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