Apple Music, a late entry by the electronics giant into the competitive subscription streaming music race, is live.
Apple on Tuesday fired up the iPad and . Anyone can try it out free during a three-month trial.in more than 100 countries as part of an for devices like the ,
The service is the belated entry into subscription streaming tunes by the company that revolutionized the music industry more than a decade ago as recorded tunes morphed into digital formats. Apple's loyalty to the 99-cent download let startups like. As downloads decline and streaming options surge in popularity, Apple Music is the electronics giant's bid to come off the sidelines and remain relevant to consumers' changing habits. However, Apple needs to prove that the unique elements of its service are enough .
Apple Music can be found in all iOS gadgets after the update, but you can also listen on Macs and PCs. The new version of iOS with Apple Music was available starting at 8 a.m. PT, and a worldwide 24-hour live radio station, Beats 1, was planned to go live at 9 a.m. PT.
After the trial period, elements of Apple Music will remain free: You can listen to Beats 1 with advertising integrated into hosts' patter, you can play other radio stations with ads and limited song skips, and you can follow and view artists' feeds through a featured called Connect.
For years, Apple was dismissive of subscriptions. Founder and former CEO Steve Jobs called the model "bankrupt" in Rolling Stone in 2003 and told Reuters "people want to own their music" in 2007. Apple's success with downloads backed up his stance even after his death in 2011: A year ago, Apple revealed it had sold 35 billion songs since launching iTunes.
It has only been in the last year that streaming music's growing popularity has started to erode the download business. Worldwide revenue from digital subscriptions jumped 39 percent last year while download sales fell 8 percent, according to International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, a global trade group for the music business.
, Apple Music provides commercial-free access to million of songs on demand, and it has sections that make personalized recommendations based on your listening habits and -- in Apple's case - your iTunes history.
Unlike others, Apple Music features the live radio element of Beats 1 alongside the expert-curated stations and Pandora-like options that are common to its peers. Apple also differentiates itself with Connect, which gives artists the ability to share audio, video, photos and posts directly with fans. Additionally, itlike "play the top song from 1993" and "add Drake's latest album to my library," and Apple Music offers cloud storage for 100,000 songs.