Apple Music, a music streaming and download service which will combine music downloads, radio streaming and music streaming in a single app, is launching in India and other countries today, reports ET Tech. It will be available on iOS devices, Macs and Windows PCs at Rs 120 per month for individuals and Rs 190 per month for families, after a 3 month free trial. The service will be rolling out for Android users later this year.
Individual tracks priced at Rs 12-15, albums at Rs 60 and upwards
Apple Music, which was announced last month at WWDC15, is accessible by updating iTunes on the Windows PC and Mac and iOS updates. It asks the user to sign up for its free 3 month trial, after which the user needs to enter their payment details. In the iTunes Store, users will be able to buy single Indian and international music tracks for Rs 15, some albums at Rs 60 where the individual tracks cost Rs 12 and some partial albums where songs are priced at both Rs 12 and Rs 15 across genres of regional and international music.
Activity based playlists
Genres include pop, bollywood, classical, dance, electronic, Indian pop, devotional and spiritual, jazz and hip hop and playlists are curated by that division’s Apple Music editors titled ‘Playlist by Apple Music Sufi and Ghazals’ for example. There are featured artists, albums, radio stations, tracks based on themes and playlists across these genres. The service also includes activity based playlists for dancing, cooking, driving, working, partying, working out and waking up among others curated by Shazam, DJ Mag, Pitchfork, Vice, Q Magazine and Mojo Magazine. It also has mood based playlists.
Playlists, updates from artists and radio with BBC News
The New section features regional songs, ‘hot tracks’, new releases and playlists for Bollywood, Tamil, Indian pop, Telugu and pop songs. The For You section is generated by Apple after it asks users to choose preferences in music genres and artists during sign up, but these preferences can also be changed later. These are bound to change over time with user listening habits and preferences. The Connect section lets users follow artists where artists posts updates, videos and images. The Beats 1 radio tab features stations, different genres and BBC World Service radio under News and Talk and broadcasts music and interviews to over a 100 countries. It also has DJs in New York, Los Angeles and London and will supposedly get data from iTunes’ curated radio stations. For Indian users, music is available from providers which include Sony, Zee, Universal, Venus and YRF Music. Albums are also available for pre-order.
The ET report claims that Apple has around 300 editors, including publications like Rolling Stone, Downbeat and Pitchfork, who are curating playlists, albums and individual songs according to themes and genres. Note that there’s a way to continue your trial without having to pay for the service by going to your profile in iTunes and disabling the auto pay feature under subscriptions.
Users can also sign up for content distribution on the Apple platform through something called iTunes Connect (different from the iTunes Connect on the user-end), which is a review process for distributing on the platform. Under this, they should be able to sell music, TV shows, movies and books.