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Apple looks to take on Spotify with Apple Music, its revamped music service

Richard Easton
8 Jun 2015
Apple Music devices
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Apple has lifted the curtain on Apple Music, its Spotify competitor streaming music service with 24/7 global radio and Android support

After months of build-up, Apple has finally taken the lid off its Apple Music streaming service, promising to be "all the music you love, all in one place". The service will cost $9.99 a month with the first 3 months free as a trial. There will also be a $14.99 'family plan', which will let you share an account with up to six people. UK pricing is yet to be confirmed so we'll update when available. 

Like its competitors, such as Spotify, Apple Music will offer unlimited streaming music alongside purchases from the iTunes music store. Alongside streaming on-demand music, Apple Music will also host 'Beats1' a global 24/7 music radio station being broadcast out of London, New York and LA and hosted by DJs including former BBC Radio 1 DJ Zane Lowe. 

Apple Music beats1

Music discovery is an important component of any music streaming service and Apple hopes this will be one of its strengths. Alongside prominent DJs such as the aforementioned Mr. Lowe, Apple Music's playlists and recommendations will be curated by 'music experts', rather than relying on algorithms. Apple describe the next song as being just as important as the one you're looking to, so wants its recommendations to have that added personal touch. You'll be able to select music and genres you're fond of, which will form the basis of recommendations.

Apple Music For You screen

'Connect' will be a means for music fans to engage with their favourite musicians, with access to exclusive music, mixtapes, playlists, soundbites and videos. This doesn't seem to be drastically different to other exclusives offered by rival services such as Tidal, which has the backing of some prominent musicians. 

Apple Music app

The newly revamped Apple Music app will be broken down into My Music, For You and New sections, for easy access to your own music library and recommendations. Siri will also be integrated with the service, so you can give commands such as "Play the top song from May 1982" or "Play the song from Selma" and Siri intelligently providing the song you're looking for.

Apple Music will be coming to 100+ countries on iOS 8.4 devices as well as iTunes on Windows and Mac from June 30th. Importantly, Apple Music will be available on Android devices from the autumn. 

While the presentation was slick, it remains to be seen how drastically Apple Music will differ from its competitors and a lot of it will rely on its personal touch as well as overall user experience. If you're too impatient to wait for it to launch, be sure to check out our guide to some of the service's competitors: Best music streaming service - which should I subscribe to?

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