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The thing about Apple's 'one MORE thing'? It's a streaming music thing

Apple Music reveals endgame for $3bn Beats buyout

WWDC 2015 Apple CEO Tim Cook closed out the WWDC keynote today with a typical "one more thing" non-surprise: a Spotify clone that just about everyone in the entire world knew was coming.

Dubbed Apple Music, the service will combine music-streamed-over-the-internet with a round-the-clock live radio station and media-sharing service for musicians to distribute tracks to fans. Wow.

The service will cost $9.99 per month with Apple offering a free three-month trial (after which auto-renew kicks in at the normal price until you tell Apple to stop.) Apple is also offering a family pack offer in which six family members can have their own accounts for a total price of $14.99 monthly.

The Apple music service will take 30 million songs from the iTunes library (how much of the total music library in the iTunes store this covers isn't clear) and organize them into playlists.

The playlists include those created by users and lists compiled by Apple into various categories and genres, such as rock music or workout mixes. Users can also insert songs from their own libraries into the playlists.

The second part of the Apple Music plan will be a 24-hour streaming radio station called Beats 1.

The internet radio station will offer 24/7 music of various genres operating out of offices in London, New York and Los Angeles. DJs participating in the service at launch will include ex-BBC DJ Zane Lowe, Ebro Darden and Julie Adenuga. Apple has promised that songs uploaded by independent artists will be given consideration for broadcast on the service alongside titles from acts signed to record labels.

The third piece of the Apple Music package will be Connect: a multimedia service for artists to upload audio to their iTunes Music pages. In addition to posting songs to Apple Music, artists can use the Connect feature to post video files, images, sound clips and song lyrics to their pages. The service will also integrate with Facebook and Twitter to pull content from those profiles when new posts are made.

Apple Music is set to launch on iOS gadgets, OS X Macs and Windows PCs on June 30. A version for Android devices is set for delivery in the Fall. So there you go. ®


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