Image Courtesy Time Inc.

News broke earlier today that U2 is working on a top-secret project with Apple to develop a new digital music format that will, in effect, save the music industry. A few additional details have emerged, giving a rough sketch of what we can expect, and when.

According to a recent interview in the international version of Time magazine, Bono says the team is working on something that will be “very exciting for the music business.” The singer described the new technology as “an audiovisual interactive format for music that can’t be pirated and will bring back album artwork in the most powerful way, where you can play with the lyrics and get behind the songs when you’re sitting on the subway with your iPad or on these big flat screens. You can see photography like you’ve never seen it before.”

The as-yet-unnamed new platform is “about 18 months away,” says Bono, which would place its release right around the same time as U2’s next album. “I think Songs of Experience will be released in a new format.”

The full interview is available in Time‘s international edition, on newsstands now.

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