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Apple Music – Everything you need to know

So what is this Apple Music thing?

Apple Music was announced yesterday at the company’s developer conference WWDC.

Basically, it’s Apple’s streaming music app that comes with human-curated playlists and a 24/7 online Radio service called Beats 1 with Zane Lowe as one of its main presenters. It was partly based on Beats Music which Apple bought last year for $3 billion. Beats Music’ Jimmy Iovine, Dr. Dre and Trent Reznor have worked on Apple Music since the acquisition.

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What will it feature? Does it have exclusives? What’s different?

Apple says their catalogue will have  millions of songs, presumably drawn from the existing iTunes catalogue. Subscribers can stream any song on iTunes in full  as part of the deal. Exclusives mentioned include handwritten lyrics, video content and live performances. As expected, human curation is a part of the deal (as it was with Beats) which means playlists by experts,curators and celebs.

When does it launch?

June 30th in over 100 countries.

How much does it cost and what is available on?

$9.99 per month or $14.99 for families of six. The first three months is free for everyone who signs up. It’ll be iOS for now with Android and Android coming later this year. No word yet on European prices but presumably they’ll be €9.99 / €14.99.

What about independent artists? What does it mean for them?

Intel Software and Services’ Eddy Cue,  said on stage at WWDC that “even unsigned artists” will be able to upload their music to Apple Music profiles.

What else should I know about the radio station Beats 1?

It’s a 24/7 worldwide internet radio service, with multiple stations by genre and theme, that in name and in the presence of Zane Lowe, appears to be inspired by BBC Radio One that will feature live broadcasts from three main cities: Zane Lowe in  LA,  Ebro Darden of Hot 97  in New York and Julie Adenuga of Rinse FM in London.

It’ll feature interviews, new music and playlists curated by experts. and You can skip songs too. More info.

What does it look like?

What about social media?

Apple Music’s social features is called Apple Music Connect and it allows artists to  share lyrics, photos, videos, songs, and comments.

Any other features?

Apple Music has Siri support so you can ask it to play “the best songs from 1992” or “the top song by Blur”, that kind of thing, that you’ll do once for the novelty.

What’s Apple’s game?

To eclipse the likes of Spotify and win the streaming game. Spotify has over 15 million subscribers. Apple are aiming for 100 million and they have the money to at least try.

Give me more info.

Here’s the press release in full.

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