The launch has been highly anticipated since last May, when Apple paid $3 billion for Beats Music and Beats Electronics.
As part of the acquisition, Apple also hired Beats co-founders Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre. Together, they’ll see if they can provide music with what Iovine called “a bigger and better ecosystem.”
An All-in-One Music Experience
Indeed, Apple Music seems to have one overarching goal: to create a single, cohesive experience that combines streaming music, downloaded content, and radio in one user-friendly app.
Every user’s existing iTunes library will be integrated with the songs from Apple Music’s streaming library, and iTunes Match – which allowed users to access their library on any device via the cloud – is being assimilated into Apple Music, as well.
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Streaming radio features that compete with Pandora are also available. Users can listen to genre-based radio stations or create their own station based on a song or artist. Interestingly, Apple Music also features a proprietary radio station called Beats 1, a 24/7 live broadcast hosted by DJs in Los Angeles, New York, and London.
Finally, Apple Music will have advanced “discovery” features that help users find new music based on their responses to certain artists and genres.
How Much Does it Cost?
A subscription to Apple Music will cost $9.99 per month, and a family subscription – which provides service to as many as six different iTunes accounts – will be available for $14.99.
The price of a single subscription is on par with both Spotify and Tidal (though Tidal charges $19.99 for CD-quality streaming). Apple’s family plan, though, will be the least expensive of its kind. Best of all, anyone can try Apple Music for the first three months free.
I, for one, will be taking advantage of that offer.
Apple Music officially launches on June 30 for PC, Mac, and iOS. Sorry, Android users – you’ll have to wait until the fall.
So, what do you think? Would you pay for a subscription to Apple’s streaming music service? Share your thoughts in the comments below.