Apple unveiled a new subscription service on Monday called “Apple Music” to compete with Spotify, Pandora and other services that are quickly redefining how consumers buy and listen to music.
Apple’s venture will offer personalized playlists that stream over the Internet and pull from the massive song library on Apple’s iTunes store. Apple Music will also offer a live 24-hour radio station called Beats 1 and a site that will allow artists to post lyrics, pictures and videos directly to fans.
Similar to Pandora and other competitors, Apple’s service will shape playlists based on a consumer’s own song library. Speaking at the company’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference here, company executives emphasized the personal element of its service — its song suggestions are not just based on algorithms, but are human-curated as well. Onstage, Beats Electronics co-founder Jimmy Iovine said that Apple aims to treat music as art, rather than digital bits, and noted that the Beats 1 radio station will have real DJs.
But Apple’s new offering is being launched in a crowded space for music streaming. Rival Spotify, which is already seven years old, counts 60 million users, a quarter of which are monthly subscribers. Some analysts said Apple may be playing catch-up but can leverage its popular mobile devices and computers to win over subscribers.How Apple’s new music service compare to what’s out there
Apple said that the service will cost $10 per month, or $14.99 per month for a family plan of up to six people. It will launch June 30 in more than 100 countries and will be available on mobile devices running Android and computers using Windows. The first three months will be offered for free.
By Hayley Tsukayama