Apple Music Offering Six-Month Free Trial to Students Until Late September

Apple has announced that students who have yet to subscribe to Apple Music can now get a six-month free trial, double the standard three months, in the United States and select other countries. The limited time promotion ends September 26, 2019, according to an internal memo obtained by the blog Appleosophy.


When the trial ends, the Apple Music plan for students is $4.99 per month, compared to the standard $9.99 per month for individuals.

While various carriers have offered extended Apple Music trials, this is the first time Apple has offered a six-month trial itself. The offer is part of Apple's annual Back to School promotion in which students can also get a free pair of Beats headphones with the purchase of an eligible Mac or iPad.

(Thanks, Holden Satterwhite!)


This article, "Apple Music Offering Six-Month Free Trial to Students Until Late September" first appeared on MacRumors.com

Discuss this article in our forums

Apple Music Now Has 60 Million Paid Subscribers

Apple Music has 60 million paid subscribers, according to iTunes chief Eddy Cue. Cue confirmed the new subscriber number with French site Numerama earlier today, and Music Business Worldwide shared details on the report.

Cue said that he's happy with Apple Music's subscriber count, and that the company is continually working on perfecting the platform across various devices. He also said that Beats 1, Apple's radio station, has "tens of millions of listeners."


Cue declined to divulge how many subscribers are outside of the Apple ecosystem. "I know the number, but I can't tell you," said Cue. He did, however, tell Numerama that Apple Music is the number one service used by people in the Apple ecosystem.

On the topic of the elimination of iTunes in favor of standalone TV, Music, and Podcast apps, Cue said that he's fond of iTunes, but "Apple Music is absolutely the best in all respects. We have something better now and it's useless to look back."


Apple Music's new 60 million subscriber milestone comes following a November report suggesting the service was up to 56 million subscribers. 60 million paid subscribers still puts Apple Music below Spotify, which had 100 million premium (aka paid) subscribers worldwide as of April.

Despite the difference in paid subscriber counts, Apple Music in early 2019 surpassed Spotify's paid subscriber total in the United States. Apple Music has somewhere around 28 million U.S. subscribers, compared to Spotify's 26 million.


This article, "Apple Music Now Has 60 Million Paid Subscribers" first appeared on MacRumors.com

Discuss this article in our forums

Some Spotify Users Frustrated With Recent Update, Moving to Apple Music Instead

One week ago today Spotify launched a revamped "Your Library" tab that the company said was "designed to get you to the content you want faster." According to Spotify subscribers on r/Spotify, this update has done the complete opposite and made navigating large music libraries nearly impossible, with the main purpose apparently made to promote Spotify's burgeoning interest in podcasts.


On r/Spotify this week, over a thousand users have gotten behind a post asking for the "old" Spotify to come back, with a few hundred comments discussing the various problems with the update. People have a lot of different thoughts on the update, but the consensus on what went wrong appears to be that Spotify stripped features in Your Library to make room for the new Podcasts tab.

In the process, the Songs tab was removed and the recently played section has been moved and downgraded, showing fewer artists and songs and removing some of its customization features. We've linked some of the Reddit users who provided specific complaints about the update below:
u/TehCrag: "Basically they removed the Songs tab and the Recently played section. And the albums tab only shows full albums that you have saved, so if you have 3 songs from the same album, they would be in the ‘liked songs’ playlist instead... which doesn’t have an alphabet scroll bar.

Also there’s a giant podcast tab next to music. They’re pushing them hard."
u/Skippin101: "There is no alphabetical "scroll bar" on the right side of the liked songs, artists, or albums pages. If I want to play a song that starts with "Z", I have to manually scroll all the way to the bottom instead of tapping the "Z" letter on the right side like before.

The recently played tab is a huge downgrade. It's now on the homepage, features far less artists/playlists, isn't customizable (i.e. you can't remove an artist or playlist from it or re-arrange it), can't be used in offline mode, and, worst of all by a country mile, when you click on a recently played artist it takes you to their artist page instead of showing you which songs you've saved by that artist."
Due to these changes, a thread recently began on r/AppleMusic welcoming Spotify users who are moving over to Apple's streaming service instead, which appears to be quite a lot. Some Spotify users pointed out that they moved from Apple Music to Spotify for features like the recently played section in Your Library, which let them quickly jump back into the albums they had just listened to.


Now that this and other features have been removed, talk of canceling Spotify and moving to Apple Music has increased. Even on Twitter, searches for "Spotify update" lead to numerous tweets about users frustrated with the UI changes and asking Spotify to revert the update.

There have been a handful of controversial app updates over the past few years, including platforms like Snapchat. That app's November 2017 update, which was aimed at getting users to more clearly see the distinction between friends and celebrities, was so disliked that Snapchat ended up reverting some of the changes. The company still lost millions of users in the process.

Spotify has yet to comment on the reaction to the new update.


This article, "Some Spotify Users Frustrated With Recent Update, Moving to Apple Music Instead" first appeared on MacRumors.com

Discuss this article in our forums

Apple Music Gains Soundtracks for Every Main Entry in the Final Fantasy Series

Square Enix recently made the soundtracks to every main Final Fantasy game available to listen on Apple Music and Spotify (via TechCrunch). The release of the soundtracks on streaming services is being timed with a special concert for Final Fantasy VII that's taking place this week in Hollywood.


To find the music, head to Apple Music and search for "Final Fantasy original soundtrack." In the results for albums you can tap "See All" to discover soundtracks for original games in the series like Final Fantasy and Final Fantasy II, and even modern entries like Final Fantasy XIII and Final Fantasy XV.

As pointed out by TechCrunch, there are some missing entries, including soundtracks for Final Fantasy X-2, Final Fantasy Tactics Advance, and Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift. Otherwise, every mainline entry in the franchise now has its soundtrack ready for streaming on Apple Music, from Final Fantasy I to Final Fantasy XV.


This article, "Apple Music Gains Soundtracks for Every Main Entry in the Final Fantasy Series" first appeared on MacRumors.com

Discuss this article in our forums

Apple Music, App Store, and Mac App Store Suffering Limited Outages Following iOS 13 and macOS Catalina Betas

Apple Music, the App Store, and the Mac App Store are experiencing outages affecting "some users," according to Apple's system status page, one day after Apple seeded the first betas of iOS 13 and macOS Catalina to developers.


Apple says some users are "experiencing a problem" with each service. The company is investigating and will update the statuses of each service as more information becomes available. The issues began around 5 a.m. Pacific Time.

We'll update this post once the outages are resolved.

(Thanks, Chris!)


This article, "Apple Music, App Store, and Mac App Store Suffering Limited Outages Following iOS 13 and macOS Catalina Betas" first appeared on MacRumors.com

Discuss this article in our forums

Apple’s Upcoming Music and TV Apps on Mac Revealed in Leaked Screenshots

Apple is widely expected to unveil the next major version of macOS at its annual Worldwide Developers Conference next week, and rumors suggest that the update will introduce standalone apps for Music and Podcasts. Apple also confirmed that its TV app will be expanding to the Mac in the fall.

Now, we have our first glimpse at what the Music and TV apps should look like courtesy of 9to5Mac's Guilherme Rambo, who has leaked screenshots of each app. Rambo says the screenshots are legitimate, rather than mockups or concepts, although parts have been redacted to protect his sources.

The report claims the new Music app is based on iTunes, as evident by the similar design language. Apple Music sections including For You, Browse, and Radio are listed in the sidebar with playback controls up top.

Music app via 9to5Mac

The new TV app is shown with a toolbar for switching between Watch Now, Movies, TV Shows, Kids, and Library sections. The sidebar contains the Library subsections of Recently Added, Movies, TV Shows, and Downloaded along with genres such as Action and Adventure, Comedy, Drama, and Kids.

TV app via 9to5Mac

The screenshots are not particularly revealing since some information has been redacted, but they provide a good glimpse of the overall look and feel of Music and TV on Mac. No screenshots of the rumored Podcasts app were shared.

Apple should unveil macOS 10.15 at its WWDC 2019 keynote on Monday at 10:00 a.m. Pacific Time. Recent trademark activity uncovered by MacRumors suggests that macOS 10.15 could be named macOS Mammoth, with other potential options including macOS Monterey, macOS Rincon, and macOS Skyline.

MacRumors will have full coverage of WWDC 2019 on our website and on Twitter at @MacRumorsLive.

Related Roundups: Apple TV, tvOS 12, macOS 10.15
Buyer's Guide: Apple TV (Don't Buy)

This article, "Apple's Upcoming Music and TV Apps on Mac Revealed in Leaked Screenshots" first appeared on MacRumors.com

Discuss this article in our forums

Apple Sued by ‘Over the Rainbow’ Composer for Alleged Piracy

Apple and other tech firms are being sued for piracy by the estate of composer Harold Arlen for offering unauthorized copies of his songs, reports the BBC. Arlen's son, Sam Arlen, says he has found more than 6,000 unauthorized copies of his father's songs on Apple, Google, Amazon and Microsoft's services.


According to legal papers filed in Los Angeles, streaming services and download stores like iTunes are flooded with "bootleg" copies of Arlen's songs, robbing his estate of royalties. Arlen's work includes several American songbook classics like Over The Rainbow and Get Happy.

The 148-page filing claims the firms are engaged in "massive piracy operations" and provides several examples of alleged piracy. For instance, the official recording of Ethel Ennis' version of Arlen's song "For Every Man, There Is A Woman" is available on the RCA Victor label for $1.29 on iTunes. However, a separate version on the Stardust Records label - with the same cover art but the RCA Victor Logo edited out - is available for $0.89.

Some of the alleged pirate copies are said to contain the signature "skips, pops and crackles" of vinyl, indicating they've been duplicated from a record, rather than the original master tapes.

Arlen's estate is also suing dozens of record labels, which it claims have "continued to work with" alleged pirates despite having knowledge of copyright infringement "for several years".
"It is hard to imagine that a person walking into Tower Records, off the street, with arms full of CDs and vinyl records and claiming to be the record label for Frank Sinatra, Louis Armstrong, and Ella Fitzgerald, could succeed in having that store sell their copies directly next to the same albums released by legendary record labels, Capitol, RCA, and Columbia, and at a lower price," stated Arlen's lawyers.

"Yet, this exact practice occurs every day in the digital music business where there is... a complete willingness by the digital music stores and services to seek popular and iconic recordings from any source, legitimate or not, provided they participate in sharing the proceeds."
According to the BBC, part of the dispute stem from the differences in copyright law between the US and Europe. In the US, copyright for sound recordings made after 1923 and before 1972 is generally 95 years. But in the UK and Europe, copyright expires after 70 years, after which sound recordings enter the public domain.

Nevertheless, some of the recordings names in Arlen's court papers are still protected by copyright in Europe, and the actual compositions are not in the public domain (a writer's copyright continues for 70 years after their death).

The estate argues that songs like "It's Only A Paper Moon" and "Stormy Weather" are "monumental works of art" that are "national treasures," and is seeking around $4.5 million in damages. Apple and other companies named in the court papers have yet to comment.


This article, "Apple Sued by 'Over the Rainbow' Composer for Alleged Piracy" first appeared on MacRumors.com

Discuss this article in our forums

Alexa Now Supports Apple Music in Australia and New Zealand on Echo, Sonos, and Fire TV Devices

Alexa now supports Apple Music in Australia and New Zealand on Amazon Echo and Amazon Fire TV devices, and compatible Sonos speakers, as reflected in a recently updated Apple support document.


This means Apple Music subscribers who own one of those devices in those countries can now ask Alexa to play songs, artists, playlists, and more from Apple Music. This functionality first launched in the United States in December before expanding to the United Kingdom and Ireland last month.

Read our guide on how to set up Apple Music in the Alexa app, including how to make it the default music service so that you don't have to say "on Apple Music" each time you ask Alexa to play something.

(Thanks, Brad!)


This article, "Alexa Now Supports Apple Music in Australia and New Zealand on Echo, Sonos, and Fire TV Devices" first appeared on MacRumors.com

Discuss this article in our forums

Apple Music Updates ‘For You’ With New Layout Featuring More Frequent Song Recommendations

As part of the iOS 12.3 release yesterday, Apple Music updated with a brand-new "For You" section. This refreshed tab now updates multiple times per day with new music suggestions based on genres you love, artists you might enjoy, and moods that match certain themes. Overall, the tab also now falls in line with the layout changes previously seen in Apple Music's Browse tab that hit earlier this year.


The top of For You still highlights your various personal "Mixes" that Apple Music curates throughout the week, including Favorites, Friends, Chill, and New Music. Below this is where the changes appear, beginning with "Recently Played" playlists and albums appearing above "Friends Are Listening To," whereas before it was the reverse order.

Below that, For You is divided into various themed sections based on your listening habits, which will be different for every user. These include areas like "Teen Pop," "Rise and Smile," "It's Only Tuesday?," recently updated playlists, genres like country and electronic, and more.

Apple Music can now even curate song and artist recommendations based on your own personal playlists. Sections like this are called "Based on [Playlist Name]" and they present you with albums that you might be interested in, based on the songs that you have in the designated playlist.


Finally, at the very bottom of For You there is a category for recommended friends and "New Releases." Updates to Apple Music's user profiles or any other tabs in the app have not appeared, but you can see the new For You tab in iTunes on Mac as well.

The Apple Music updates in iOS 12.3 appeared alongside a lengthy list of features, including AirPlay 2 for smart TVs, a redesigned TV app for the Apple TV, and various other bug fixes and improvements.


This article, "Apple Music Updates 'For You' With New Layout Featuring More Frequent Song Recommendations" first appeared on MacRumors.com

Discuss this article in our forums

Apple Music Hires Lindsay Rothschild From Google to Help Build Relationships With Songwriters

Apple recently hired Lindsay Rothschild to Head of Creative Services for Apple Music's North American division (via Variety). Rothschild is joining Apple from Google, where she led songwriter and publisher relations for YouTube.


The new Apple Music executive will be tasked with building and maintaining working relationships with artists in the songwriter community, as well as publishers. Rothschild officially started at Apple on April 29, and she was the first hire on Apple Music's Music Publishing Creative Services team.

Rothschild's hiring follows a few months of reports about streaming music services fighting against the United States Copyright Royalty Board, which ruled to increase the royalties paid to songwriters by 44 percent. Companies like Spotify, Google, Pandora, and Amazon all fought against the decision.

Apple remained out of the fight, favoring the increased royalty payments for songwriters and earning praise from various artists and those in the music industry.

Now, Rothschild will continue working on expanding Apple's good graces in the community, which she appears ready to accomplish. According to sources, she is able to "speak and understand the language of songwriters," and has a "great track record" during her previous jobs, including the Disney Music Group prior to her spot at Google.


This article, "Apple Music Hires Lindsay Rothschild From Google to Help Build Relationships With Songwriters" first appeared on MacRumors.com

Discuss this article in our forums