As expected, Apple on Monday unveiled its major rival to Spotify called Apple Music. In unveiling the new streaming service, Apple is trying to regain its power over the music industry that it first seized with the release of the iPod and the iTunes Store. The service will be available through the iTunes app. Apple says Apple Music is three things: First, a “revolutionary” music service featuring playlists curated by professional DJs; a worldwide radio station that will run 24 hours a day, 7 days a week; and a way for artists to connect with their fans.
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Like Spotify, Apple Music will also let you search and stream the entire catalog of music available on iTunes. The service will deliver suggestions for other artists and songs based on recommendations by music experts, which Apple says will deliver more of a human touch to discovering new music.
The Beats One radio station, meanwhile, will deliver live broadcasts all day, every day from studios in London, New York and Los Angeles. Finally, the new Connect feature will give artists a direct connection to their fans. It lets them create their own pages where they can deliver exclusive content to Apple Music users.
Apple Music will be priced at a monthly subscription of $9.99 for individuals and $14.99 for a family package for up to 6 family members. It’s coming not just to iOS and OS X but also to Android and Windows. The app will officially launch later this month with the release of iOS 8.4, with an Android version set to come in the fall. Apple Music will offer a free three-month trial, which should give you plenty of time to decide whether it’s worth your money.