Apple launched its new music streaming service in June, and I’ve been trying it out since the launch. Before using Apple Music, I was using Beats Music, which was acquired by Apple more than a year ago. Apple has no doubt been working on getting into the streaming music service for a while now.
But is it worth it?
While that is a tough question to just answer “Yes” or “No”. In my opinion you get a good and reliable streaming service at a great price. Apple Music is clearly not just a rebranding of Beats Music. While it does offer similar features, Apple Music instantly stands out by offering better integration with your own music and iOS.
Apple completely redesigned the Music app for iOS and built in the streaming service, which was expected. Some users love the redesigned app, while some hate it, which is a given.
I, however, like the integration of Apple Music within the Music app, but I feel Apple could have done a better job at building the app. It can be very confusing for the average user. One thing Apple needs to fix is the ability to pick up where you left off in the app. For example: if I’m using the app, and I turn it off for a while and come back to it, it loses its place and resets back to the main screen.
Apple Music comes with new features, including a social media feed “Connect”. Connect allows you to follow your favorite artists and bands. Artists and bands can post pictures, messages, and even songs. Connect will be a great way for new artists to connect with fans. This is Apple’s second attempt at a social media service for music, their old social media service called “Ping” having died a few years ago. Connect has the ability to succeed with the support of artists and Apple Music.
In addition to streaming music, Apple also allows you to watch Music Videos on-demand. I remember as a kid always wanting to watch VH1 at night to see music videos. Now you can watch them on-demand with Apple Music.
Apple Music allows you to share your service with up to six family members. Simply activate Family Share and sign up for $14.99 and all your family members can have there own Apple Music account. No need to share an account.
One feature that I love is the ability to listen to music in your library and on Apple Music. Let’s say there’s a song you really want to add. It’s not available on Apple Music, but its available on iTunes. You can buy the song on iTunes and have it accessible by Apple Music.
Apple Launched a 24 hour radio station called Beats1, which features DJ’s from all around the world. Beats 1 is a big feature of Apple Music and one that I love. Beats 1 allows Apple to connect with artists for exclusive track releases and the ability to play their songs first for the world. Apple Music is live 12 hours a day and repeats the second half of the day.
Apple removed Home Sharing from iOS 8.4 which upset many users. Apple has said they plan to bring back Home Sharing in iOS 9 which was expected to launch in late September.
Apple will continue to improve Apple Music and the new Music app for iOS. Apple Music is expected to launch this fall on Android which is huge for Apple. Apple has never released an app for Android, and this will allow the service to grow outside of iOS. Users who singed up for Apple Music on launch day will begin paying for the service during the month of September.
If you haven’t given Apple Music a try yet, you can sign up for the service inside the Music app on iOS. You’ll receive a three month trial period upon sign up. After three months you’ll be charged either $9.99 or $14.99 per month – depending on your subscription.
Follow me on Twitter and share your experiences in the comments below. I will do another review after using the service for six months.