Apple Music is an interesting beast. By any objective metric, Apple’s streaming music service is a success, what with more than 17 million subscribers attained in just a little over a year. But Apple isn’t a traditional company and, in turn, it’s not often held to a higher standard than most.
That said, some have pegged the rollout of Apple Music as something of a disappointment. In addition to early functionality problems and a myriad of UI choices, Apple Music still lags behind Spotify in terms of overall subscribers. Not too long ago, Spotify CEO Daniel Ek hinted via Twitter that his company now boasts more than 40 million paying subscribers. All the more impressive is that Spotify is growing at a faster clip than Apple Music, despite the latter’s reliance on exclusive releases from big name artists like Drake and Frank Ocean.
Apple, though, is in it for the long haul and with the recent release of iOS 10, introduced a massive overhaul to the Apple Music experience. Commenting on where Apple thinks the music industry is headed, Apple Music chief Jimmy Iovine and other Apple Music bigwigs sat down for a far-ranging and interesting interview with Buzzfeed.
As far as Apple’s music ambitions are concerned, Iovine said that while Apple has no interest in becoming a music label, it has no plans to slow down its pursuit of securing exclusives from A-list artists.
“We put a lot into this, we’ve had some real successes, and we always hold up our end of the relationship,” Iovine said. “We’re feeling our way around and seeing what works … Every time we do [an exclusive], we learn something new.”
One of the more interesting aspects of the interview focused on Apple’s strategy regarding Apple Music’s redesign. According to Apple, one of the goals with the design was to appeal more strongly to older and international users, hence the focus on a “cleaner interface with larger images and text…”
It’s also worth highlighting why Apple believes its selection of algorithmically generated personalized playlists are more effective than what Spotify has to offer: years and years of old iTunes data.
If you gave high ratings to a song or album in your old iTunes library, or just played it a lot more than others, you’ll find that behavior reflected in your My Favorites Mix. Meanwhile, the My New Music Mix algorithm serves recently released songs — as well as songs that Apple Music knows you haven’t played before — that the service’s music experts have flagged as similar to others in your taste profile. Apple Music executives suggested even more personalized playlists will follow in the series; but only after prototypes have been vetted, with all possible outcomes — intentional and otherwise — given careful consideration.
Make sure to check out the full interview via the source link below. Apple hasn’t been too forthcoming regarding its somewhat nascent music streaming service so there’s a lot of interesting tidbits worth digesting.