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BW Businessworld

Apple Targets Your Tunes, Unlimited Music Access For $10 A Month

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 The annual developer’s conference, WWDC, was held on Monday (8th of June) where Apple announced its upcoming updates for iOS 9, Mac OS X and other services. One of the most interesting and talked about announcements was the Apple Music service which will be launched globally on the 30th of June.  The service will be available in 100 countries at the time of launch and will be free of cost for the first three months. Upon finishing the first three months the monthly subscription will cost $9.99 (approx. Rs. 630).  There is also a family pack where up to six users can use the service for $14.99 (approx. Rs. 1000), and can share via iCloud Family Sharing. 
With Apple Music, users will be able to stream every single song available on the iTunes store and even save them for offline listening. The service will also let users skip tracks as many times as they want and will feature an intuitive search system and Siri integration which will understand the kind of music you seek and even search for any track that you wish. The service will also include a 24x7 radio station called Beats 1 which will be available free of cost to anyone who has an Apple ID on Mac, Windows, iOS and Android. 
Another interesting feature of Apple Music will be a social network for musicians called ‘Connect’ where musicians will be able to share their latest songs with their fans. However one can only listen to these songs if one has the subscription. This is quite useful for unsigned artists who want to share and get a feedback on their music.
Now Apple didn’t confirm that India would be one of the 100 countries where the service will be launched, but since it confirmed that the service will be available on Android devices, there is a fair good chance that it will. And if you happen to visit the Apple India website you will notice that it has been updated to showcase the Apple Music service features and also mentions the free trial membership.  
With a number of companies already establishing and paving the online music streaming business in India, it shouldn’t be very difficult for Apple to roll out Apple Music, however; the biggest hurdle for the service will be to provide relevant content as the Indian consumer is not only seeking English music, but wants Bollywood as well as regional music. For instance, Saavn has over 3 million song titles in over 10 languages. Another major concern for Apple would be the subscription cost as a majority of consumers in India are not willing to pay for such a service. They prefer a more affordable or a free of charge service as they are already paying money for data consumption. It will be interesting to see how Apple will tackle these issues if it plans to go big with Apple Music in India.