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Apple aims to clear up the mysteries of Apple Music via how-to videos

As the initial 90-day trial winds down, Apple is trying to explain just how Apple Music works to help users still in the dark.

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Will Apple's latest how-to videos persuade Apple Music users to stay onboard? Apple

Confused over how Apple Music works? Then you may want to check out a series of seven new video spots cooked up by Apple.

Launched on June 30, Apple Music is the company's first entry into the streaming music service business, offering streaming music with playlists curated by "music experts," a 24/7 radio station called Beats 1 and a social feature called Connect that lets you follow your favorite artists. The service has received good grades for its content but also some complaints that it's poorly organized, difficult to use and can make mistakes when trying to sync with existing iTunes libraries.

Any confusion or complaints over the service become critical as Apple now faces a deadline. The service has been available on a 90-day free trial basis. On Wednesday, any user who opted for the free trial on the June 30 launch date will have to decide whether to pay the $9.99 per month for an individual plan or the $14.99 for a shared family plan, or dump the service entirely.

In an attempt to keep users from exiting the service, Apple's how-to videos take us on a tour of several key features to show how they work. One video explains how Apple Music playlists are created by music bloggers, curators and other "experts" who attempt to suggest songs based on different genres and activities. A second video shows you how to create and customize your own playlists based on your favorite songs. A third video takes you to the My Music feature where you can view and play tunes from the local library on your device as well as music stored in iCloud.

The fourth video tries to describe the Connect feature where you can follow your favorite artists through news, photos and videos. The fifth video takes you on a tour of the live Beats 1 radio station as well as featured stations based on different genres. The sixth video covers the New feature, which helps you discover new songs, artists and albums. And finally, the seventh video highlights the For You page, which suggests music based on your current interests.

Apple's need for seven different videos to explain the ins and outs of Apple Music points to the wealth of features offered by the service. But it also illustrates the service's complexity and how it can prove confusing to some people. Users may not be aware of certain features or at least not understand how to use them. The videos certainly help clear up much of the mystery. But is the complexity of the service turning off subscribers?

On August 6, five weeks after its debut, Apple Music had picked up 11 million trial users, Eddy Cue, Apple's senior vice president of Internet software and services, told USA Today at the time. Cue, who said he was "thrilled with the numbers so far," said that 2 million people had already subscribed to the family plan but he didn't reveal any numbers on the individual plan.

A study published on August 18 by researcher Musicwatch found that 77 percent of people who use an Apple mobile device in the US are aware of Apple Music, and 11 percent said they were actually using Apple Music. But among people who had tried Apple Music, 48 percent reported they are not currently using the service. A total of 64 percent of those Apple Music users said they were extremely or very likely to pay for it after their free trials end, and almost as many -- 61 percent -- said they had already turned off the auto-renewal option. Apple took issue with the study's findings, countering that 79 percent of those who signed up for a trial were still using the service.

(Via Cult of Mac)