The goal is much higher than simply launching a music streaming service or radio, says Apple Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president and architect of this new music strategy. The comment comes hot on the heels of introducing Apple Music, the highly anticipated service that could move the needle in the music industry.
“We’re trying to do something that’s bigger than streaming, that’s bigger than radio,” Eddy Cue said.
Fact is, one app installed for all users running the latest version of iOS will pack three major features: It is Apple Music, the music streaming service, that allows users to save albums for offline listening in Apple’s huge music library.
It also includes Beats 1, a 24/7 radio station, and finally, it comes with Connect, the social network that connects artists and fans.
There are plenty of players in the music streaming industry, so what would make users pay $120 per year and switch to Apple Music? It’s the presence of human curation, Jimmy Iovine explains in an interview with the Wall Street Journal:
“You put Paul Simon into a playlist. An algorithm will tell you that the next song is Art Garfunkel,” said Iovine, referring to the two halves of the legendary 1960s pop duo. “But it’s not the next song to play. Ask Paul Simon that. They play different kinds of music for different moods.”
Apple has a major advantage over other players, some of whom, such as Spotify, have been present for seven years now. Everyone running iOS 8.4 will have the Music app, which includes the new service(s).
“The more people paying for and listening to music, the more artists will be compensated for it,” said Cue, noting that it’s still early days for streaming music. “There’s billions of people and 15 million subscribers so I’d call that early.”
Cue added that negotiations with music labels weren’t easy, but that Apple’s commitment to music and its cash pile were enough to convince them.