Apple announce new music streaming app
Apple have announced details of their new music streaming service APPLE MUSIC. The new app combines a streaming song and music video library, an internet radio station and also a way for artists to share unreleased tracks and other material. It includes a recommendation system that uses both human curators and computer algorithms to suggest songs to the user. The service is set to challenge Spotify, Tidal and other music apps.
Chris Cooke, from the news site Complete Music Update commented “A lot of people in the industry see the launch of the music service as a big deal, and their hope is that this will help take subscription-based streaming mainstream, but Spotify has an ad-supported free level to help sell its premium packages, which Apple doesn’t, so it still has a unique selling point.”
Apple’s service introduces the Beats 1 radio station, which will be hosted by ex-BBC DJ Zane Lowe among others. The app also works with Apple’s voice-controlled virtual assistant Siri, allowing subscribers to ask it to play a song from a movie soundtrack or year without needing to know the track’s name. Recommended playlists will be crafted by “music experts” to ensure the songs fit together, but algorithms will be used to direct users to different ones based on their listening histories and favourite artists.
“Apple is arriving late to the music streaming business, due in part to Steve Jobs’ refusal to believe that music subscription services would ever work,” said James McQuivey from the Forrester consultancy. But, he added, that he believed it would catch up with market leader Spotify’s 15 million paying subscribers in less than a year.
Apple said the service would launch in more than 100 countries on 30 June, and would cost $9.99 (£6.50) per month in the US for one person – the same as Spotify – or $14.99 for families containing up to six people. Users do not need to pay to listen to Beats 1.
Geoff Blaber from CCS Insight suggested Apple might face a challenge explaining all the features on offer. “Apple Music is a complex mix of services including music streaming, live radio, music discovery and social interaction with artists. It’s too early to tell whether this is what users are waiting for but Apple’s installed base, the three month free subscription and family bundle are huge levers that Apple’s competitors will be wary of.”
The Music app will initially be restricted to iOS, Windows PCs and Mac computers, but will extend to Android phones and Apple TVs later in the year.
(Source: BBC News website)
To view the official Apple Press Info release click here