So far, WWDC 2015 has been doing a solid job at hitting most of the notes we were expecting: new platform updates, new Maps, split-screen on the iPad… and it’s not stopping now. For months, we’ve been talking about Apple’s next big push with media, re-thinking how it makes music accessible to its users – especially now that it has Beats under its umbrella. Today, Apple shares what we’ve been anticipating, announcing Apple Music.
Beats 1 is Apple Music’s 24/7 global radio effort, broadcasting from New York, LA, and London. Apple decries the rise of algorithmically generated playlists above all else, insisting that users will prefer the curated control professional DJs bring to Beats 1, delivering “music that is great and feels great.”
One of the biggest focuses for Apple Music is on the interaction between artists and their fans, and giving creators a direct line to both established and new audiences. They can share media, news about what they’re working on next, and more: it’s all called Connect.
This isn’t just about the service, though, and Apple also shares news about changes to its Music app. Despite the emphasis on DJ-driven radio, automatic recommendations aren’t going away, and the For You screen combines such computer-driven data with curated content from experts.
Siri will help connect users with Apple Music content, using its natural language parsing-fu to pull up the music you’re looking for even if you don’t know the specific name of the song nor artist.
Apple Music will launch around the world later this month. While it will initially available on iOS and OS X, Android and Windows support will arrive later this year.
Even non-subscribers will get access to certain Apple Music features, like being able to follow artists on Connect and streaming Beats 1.
Pricing will begin at just about $10 a month, with a three month free trial to help get you started. For more like $15, you can sign up for a family account that supports up to six discrete user accounts.