APPLE ANNOUNCED the long-awaited Apple Music service at its Worldwide Developer Conference on Monday, with its sights set firmly on rival Spotify.
Apple said during the launch that one million devices will have access to Apple Music from the get-go, and a beta release of iOS 8.4 has since confirmed that it will be no more expensive than Spotify with a £9.99 monthly price tag (below).
Apple Music will arrive on iPhones and iPads via an update to iOS 8.4, and on Macs and Windows in the form of a new version of iTunes. Apple has also promised that the service will be coming to Android.
Taking Apple Music beyond its own platforms is uncharacteristic of Apple, and the firm is clearly looking to woo subscribers away from Spotify and stop new ones signing up.
The two services are fairly evenly matched on paper. Both have around 30 million songs in their libraries, both offer an offline mode.
However, Apple takes the lead with a family offering allowing up to six users for an extra fiver compared with Spotify's two, and the offer of three months free compared with Spotify's 30 days.
In terms of royalties, Apple has boasted that it will pay 71.5 percent revenue from its $9.99 per month music streaming service to music owners in the US. In comparison, Spotify estimates that it the average song generates between $0.006 and $0.0084 per stream in royalties.
Spotify said that it now has 20 million paying subscribers, double the 10 million figure it announced last year. Pointing out the head start it has over Apple Music, the firm also revealed that its total number of users is up 87 percent from 40 million last year to 75 million this year.
Apple has yet to talk about its royalties situation, and Spotify pointed out that the amount it pays to artists is growing.
"As we grow, the amount of royalties we pay out to artists, songwriters and rights holders continues to climb faster than ever. We have now paid more than $3bn in royalties, including more than $300m in the first three months of 2015 alone," said the post.
It added, clearly gunning after the sympathy vote: "We could have never achieved this growth without all of you: the music fans who listen, discover, share and celebrate music and artists every day. Thank you, 20 million."
Will Apple convince users to ditch Spotify in favour of its own Apple Music service? According to our very own Chris Merriman, it probably will. µ
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