Apple have announced that the new version of their operating system iOS 8.4 will launch on Tuesday, together with its new Apple Music service and a radio station for the service.
The announcement, made Sunday morning by an Apple executive, states that the iOS 8.4 update will be available starting June 30th at 8 AM PT, and will be shortly followed by the launch of a 24-hour radio station called Beats 1, which will mark the first step in launching its music streaming service.
Apparently, all of the users upgrading iOS 8.4 will receive the Apple Music app incorporated in the operating system. According to Apple’s official site, people connected with Apple ID can use it to view and follow artist feeds, listen to the Beats 1 station and other future Apple Music radio stations with limited skipping possibilities.
To use its on-demand streaming services, users must pay a $10 dollar monthly membership, which will give them the possibility of listening to the entire Apple Music library, download songs to listen them offline and tune in to radio stations with unlimited skipping. Currently, Apple are offering a three month trial membership free of charge though. According to the blog post announcing the feature, the initial cloud library limit will still be 25.000 tracks, with Apple reportedly looking into raising it to 100.000 until iOS 9 comes out.
The Beats 1 radio station will be run by DJ Zane Lowe and will feature numerous shows and interviews with famous artists throughout the entire music industry, with the first revealed to be Eminem. Dr. Dre will host his own show called “The Pharmacy”, with other confirmed show hosts counting Elton John, Pharrell Williams, Josh Homme and even Jaden Smith.
Music streaming is one of the fastest growing industries and is rapidly shaping the way the music industry works. Apple has noticed that and are trying to offer a challenge to popular streaming services such as Pandora or Spotify. However, with its free version being quite lackluster when compared to the two and other major streamers, analysts are question whether Apple will manage to gain a foothold in streaming on its own terms, even with a loyal fan base and huge amounts of money to invest in marketing the product.
Streaming has put a dent on other forms of musical distribution, with both digital downloads and physical album sales falling by 8 percent in 2014. Subscription based options from streaming services instead recorded 40 percent higher revenues, with then globally earning more than $1.5 billion.
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