Apple has poached a critical Microsoft executive in a move many think may presage more broadband-based offerings from the Cupertino company.

Microsoft has lost its worldwide marketing and sales executive for Xbox Live, Julia Miller. Apple Insider sources report Miller left Microsoft in early March to migrate to Apple.

The executive has fifteen years of consumer sales and marketing experience, mainly with console games.

Speculation has begun that Apple plans to extend its service with a subscription-based offering in order to compete with Napster To Go.

If it makes such a move, Apple has an instant market of Mac users, along with a potential audience of up to eight million Windows-using iPod owners.

However, in the past Apple CEO Steve Jobs has dismissed subscription-based services, alleging that consumers "like to own their music".