Apple Blends Streaming, Social, Radio for New Music Service

The new Apple Music service, unveiled during yesterday’s WWDC in San Francisco, will be released for iOS the end of this month and will be coming to Android devices this fall. The service will allow subscribers to stream their favorite music, access curated playlists, and watch music videos and exclusive clips in HD for $9.99 per month. The company is also offering a $14.99 family plan for sharing Apple Music with up to five other people. Apple is adding a global radio station called Beats 1 that will be run by DJ and music producer Zane Lowe.

The Radio 1 DJ is leaving the BBC after 12 years for his new gig with Beats 1, Apple’s first ever-live radio station. “It’ll broadcast music 24/7 to over 100 countries from June 30th, with Zane Lowe fronting the show in Los Angeles, Ebro Darden in New York and Julie Adenuga in London,” reports Engadget.

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Apple is also introducing a new feature for emerging musicians. During the company’s presentation, music industry veteran Jimmy Iovine provided details for a feature called “Connect” that helps unsigned artists upload their music to the new service. The musicians will be able to share their demos, live recordings and videos via their own profile pages that fans can follow.

According to The Verge, “Apple Music is essentially a combination of iTunes, Spotify, Pandora, and social elements of services like Tumblr and Instagram — along with a streaming radio channel.”

Apple revolutionized digital music consumption with its iTunes store, but music fans have increasingly been abandoning downloads in favor of on-demand streaming services such as Spotify. Apple is looking to take back its lead with the launch of its new service.

“Apple is moving to reassert itself amid changes in how consumers watch television, read news and listen to music, while seeking to leverage its hundreds of millions of iTunes accounts and hundreds of millions of smartphones and tablets in consumers’ hands,” suggests The Wall Street Journal.

One major distinction of Apple’s new offering is its price for the family plan, which allows six individuals to access content for $14.99 (similar deals from Spotify and Rdio cost $14.99 for two people and $29.99 for five people). Spotify has hinted that it would match Apple’s price in the near future.

According to Eddy Cue, Apple’s SVP of Internet services and software, the company reached agreements with the three major music labels prior to announcing Apple Music.

Related:
The Must-See Moments from WWDC 2015CNET, 6/8/15
Apple Pushes Unified Subscription Music AppThe Wall Street Journal, 6/8/15
Spotify Plans to Match Apple Music’s Very Cheap Family PlanThe Verge, 6/8/15
The 10 Most Important Announcements from Apple WWDC 2015, The Verge, 6/8/15