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Everything You Need To Know About Apple Music

Posted by Glen Sears | June 8, 2015 12:30 pm | No Comments

apple-wwdc-2015_2588

Apple’s WWDC 2015 is already in full steam, announcing sweeping changes to OSX, iOS, the iPad, and Apple’s integration into digital life.

But no announcement has been more anticipated than the relaunch of Apple’s new music service, now confirmed to be named Apple Music. The event brought in industry heavy-hitters Jimmy Iovine, Drake, Trent Reznor, The Weeknd, and Eddy Cue. For those of you that weren’t able to catch the live blogs, here are the most pertinent details.

Jimmy Iovine’s intro

“It’s really an honor to be here. I’m here because in 2003 the record industry was confused…we had this giant invader from the north: technology…These guys really do think different. Technology and art can work together, at least at Apple. In 2015, the music industry is a fragmented mess. If you want to stream music, you can go over here! If you want to stream video, you can check this out! There needs to be a place where music can be treated less like digital bits and more like the art it is…not just the top tier artists but the kids at home too.”

Overview

Apple Music attempts to combine many digital music services into one app. Music contains a streaming service (similar to Spotify or Beats), a 24/7 global radio station, and Beats Connect, an integrated social service for artists to connect with fans and vice versa. The move comes at a time when services like TIDAL are also consolidating services like ticket purchasing and exclusive releases. Apple may be late to the game, but their enormous influence in both the music industry and consumer electronics market may give them an advantage.

The service will be available June 30th, available for both iOS and Android. The first three months of Apple Music are free to all subscribers. Membership will then cost $9.99/month or $14.99/month for up to six family members.

*Apple Music is available on your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac and PC starting June 30. Apple Music will be coming to Apple TV and Android phones this fall.

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Music Streaming Service

Imagine iTunes if it could stream. The entire Apple Music catalog contains “over 30 million songs” and includes all your iTunes purchases and ripped CDs (via iCloud). Along with self-serve streaming, Apple has doubled down on human-curated playlists “not based on genre, beats, or research.” There is also a new “For You” category of Music, which combines human playlists with more traditional algorithmic playlists. In addition, Siri’s new features will allow complex commands such as “Play me the best songs from 1994.”

Beats 1 Radio

Beats 1 radio is a 24/7 station broadcasting in 100 countries. The service employs three influential DJs: Zane Lowe in Los Angeles, Ebro Darden in New York and Julie Adenuga in London. The service will feature all genres “from indie rock to classical to folk to funk.” It also allows users to skip as many songs as they like. The service will offer more than just music, employing its star DJs for interviews, guest hosts, and music industry news–likely related to exclusive content offered on the service.

Beats Connect

Lets unsigned artists connect with fans. In essence it’s a miniature version of Apple’s failed music/social network Ping. Artists can share information and updates with fans, and fans in turn can interact with those updates. Artists will reportedly be sharing lyrics, backstage and studio photos, or videos. According to Apple’s press release, artists may even release new tracks directly to fans via the social platform.

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The Apple Music announcements today put Apple in direct competition with Spotify, TIDAL, Soundcloud, Pandora, and more. Beyond Apple’s influence and market cap, the greatest advantage Apple Music has is its integration. Not only is Apple Music offering a multitude of services (with most of its competitors having similar but incomplete offerings), but Apple Music is deeply integrated into the Apple ecosystem. Siri integration, use of your existing iTunes library, family sharing via iCloud, and direct connection to your Apple ID make Apple Music a serious contender.

All photos courtesy of The Verge

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