iTunes Radio

'iTunes Radio' Articles

Apple Ceases Free iTunes Radio Streaming Worldwide

Apple today officially ended free streaming of its iTunes Radio channels worldwide, incorporating the catalogue of stations into its subscription-based Apple Music service. The change follows Apple's announcement earlier this month that its free radio-listening feature would be discontinued at the end of January but would remain available to Apple Music subscribers. As of this morning, iOS Music app users who tap on a radio station are bounced to a screen prompting them to join Apple's premium streaming music service. Likewise, iTunes users on a Mac who attempt to access the stations or create their own are met with a dialog window asking them to "Get on Our Wavelength" and join Apple Music. Users with an iTunes Match subscription are also no longer able to access the stations. However, Apple's Beats 1 radio channel remains available to iTunes users worldwide as a free listening option. Apple had quietly continued to offer ad-supported iTunes Radio stations in the United States and Australia even after the launch of Apple Music on June 30, 2015. However, after the company's decision to wind down its mobile iAd platform, the feature was already being limited in other regions to those who pay for Apple's streaming music service. iTunes Radio was originally released with iTunes 11.1 and iOS 7 as a free ad-supported service, offering music discovery through featured and genre stations provided by Apple or through the creation of new stations based on a specific artist or song.

Apple Ending Ad-Supported iTunes Radio Stations at End of January

As part of the winding down of its iAd platform, Apple today sent out a notice to customers who listen to its radio service letting them know the radio feature is being discontinued at the end of January. In the email, Apple says that Beats 1 radio will be the only free listening option available to those who do not subscribe to the Apple Music service. Customers who listen to radio stations sans ads with an iTunes Match subscription are also receiving the emails and will no longer be able to listen to radio stations as an iTunes Match perk. Apple has quietly continued to offer ad-supported iTunes Radio stations in the United States and Australia even after the launch of Apple Music, but with the end of its current iAd platform on the horizon, the feature will be limited to those who pay for Apple Music going forward. Customers in Australia are receiving emails stating the radio service will end on January 29, while U.S. customers are receiving emails that suggest it will no longer be available as of January 28. Earlier this week, BuzzFeed reporter John Paczkowski said that Apple was working towards dismantling its in-house iAd sales team in favor of a more automated platform. This afternoon, Apple announced the end of its iAd App Network, and it's likely there will be additional changes to products and services as the iAd platform is

Apple's New Streaming Music Service and Revamped iTunes Radio to Debut Next Week

Apple's much-rumored streaming music service is set to debut at the Worldwide Developers Conference on June 8 alongside a revamped iTunes Radio, The Wall Street Journal confirmed today. Apple's Beats-based streaming music service will not include a free listening tier like Spotify, but it will include unlimited on-demand streaming for $10 per month. Rather than offering its music catalog for free, Apple will supplement its upcoming streaming music service with free music available through iTunes Radio. As has been rumored, iTunes Radio will be gaining new channels created by and hosted by DJs. Apple has made several hires for iTunes Radio, most notably snatching DJ Zane Lowe from BBC Radio in February. The radio push is said to be aimed primarily at users who are not located in the United States, and has been rumored earlier, Apple has plans to debut its streaming music service and iTunes Radio in multiple countries around the world. Apple is hoping that users outside the U.S. who do not have access to Pandora will use the radio service and later subscribe to Apple's streaming music service. According to The Wall Street Journal's sources, Apple is fully prepared to cannibalize its iTunes music downloads with its new streaming service and it plans to promote it heavily to iTunes customers. For example, a customer purchasing a $10 album may be encouraged by Apple to subscribe to the music service instead. Apple has not yet closed deals with Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, or Warner Music Group, but the negotiations are expected to be completed in

Apple Looking to Sign Drake, Pharrell and David Guetta as iTunes Radio Guest DJs

Apple is in talks to sign Toronto-born rapper Drake, hip-hop artist Pharrell Williams and electronic music DJ David Guetta as guest DJs for a revamped iTunes Radio, according to the New York Post. The report also claims that Apple continues to negotiate with record labels for Apple Music and wants to offer a three-month free trial period for the $10-a-month streaming music service. Apple Music will reportedly combine the best features of Pandora, Spotify and YouTube into one service, including streaming music and video, artist pages, a YouTube-style sharing section called Apple Connect and a refreshed version of iTunes Radio. Apple also wanted to offer lyrics as part of the service, but does not want to pay extra to record labels to offer the feature. Apple is expected to announce its new streaming music service on June 8 at its annual Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco, building upon the assets it acquired through its Beats Music purchase last year. The company will reportedly push customers to sign up for Apple Music by offering SoundCloud-like sharing, exclusive content and the aforementioned three-month free trial

Apple's Streaming Music Negotiations in Russia Confirm Plans for Multi-Country Availability

Apple's Beats Music and iTunes Radio streaming services are available in a limited number of countries, but Apple is working on launching its upcoming music service in a number of countries around the world. Previous rumors have suggested Apple's upcoming music service will launch in multiple countries when it debuts in June, and a new report from Billboard confirms that Apple is seeking to establish deals in Russia. According to Russian newspapers, leading Russian record labels have hinted at the negotiations and have suggested that Russia will be among the first countries where the new music service will launch. Apple is said to be working on deals with local labels that would expand its digital rights to streaming services. Currently, Russian iTunes users have access to music, movies, apps, and books through iTunes, as well as iTunes Match. Beats Music is only available in the United States, while iTunes Radio is available in Australia and the United States. When iTunes Radio launched in 2013, Apple promised to bring it to additional countries, with iTunes chief Eddy Cue saying a worldwide launch for iTunes Radio was a "top priority" and service was planned for "more than 100 countries." It is not clear why Apple's iTunes Radio expansion plans fell through, but the intricacies of establishing contracts in many countries around the world likely played a part, as did iTunes Radio's lukewarm reception. iTunes Radio is set to receive a major revamp alongside Beats Music, and while today's report doesn't state whether or not the Russian negotiations cover content

Apple to Push Paid Streaming Music Service With Free Trials and SoundCloud-Like Sharing

Ahead of the rumored debut of Apple's upcoming streaming music service, Re/code has shared several details on the initiative, sourced from industry insiders. As we've learned previously, Apple will charge $9.99 per month for the service and will not offer a freemium streaming tier as other music services like Spotify do, but the company is aiming to introduce ways to let people listen to some content for free. First and foremost, Apple hopes to offer listeners a free trial period, which lasts between one and three months, letting them sample the music service for an extended period of time before opting for a full subscription. The length of the trial will depend on what Apple is able to negotiate with music companies. Apple is also working on a feature that may let artists and music creators upload samples of songs that could be listened to without subscribing to the service. Re/code's sources are describing this as "something akin to SoundCloud." SoundCloud is a music sharing platform that lets users upload and share originally-created music, and a similar feature within Apple's new music service would give indie artists an easy way to share music while providing listeners with free content. The third way Apple plans to potentially get music to listeners for free is through a revamp of iTunes Radio. We've heard hints of this previously, but the new version of iTunes Radio may feature stations that are curated by humans rather than computers, with different content available in different locales. New Apple hire BBC Radio 1 DJ Zane Lowe and other recently hired

Apple's Streaming Music Service and Revamped iTunes Radio Launching in Several Countries in Late June

While Apple is still working to get key deals in place for its upcoming streaming music service, the company remains committed to announcing the service at its annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC), likely during the opening keynote on June 8, according to 9to5Mac. Apple's streaming music service will reportedly launch alongside a revamped iTunes Radio in a "long list" of countries in late June as part of iOS 8.4 and iTunes 12.2. New Apple TV and Mac apps that will integrate the service remain under development at Apple. The redesigned Music app in iOS 8.4 beta, seeded to developers in April, will reportedly have different options and tabs geared towards Apple's streaming music service by time the software version reaches the public. Meanwhile, the all-new version of iTunes Radio will reportedly offer unlimited skipping as a paid option, and become available in additional countries beyond the United States and Australia."The beta version of iOS 8.4 in the hands of developers is only a taste of the new design, according to sources, and the different options and tabs across the application will be tweaked to better feature streaming music over music stored offline. Sources said earlier this year that the new Beats-based application will include porting of existing Beats accounts, curated playlists, and the ability to save tracks for offline listening. While Apple initially hoped to charge $8/month for the service, roadblocks from the record labels have reportedly pushed the price back to the existing $10/month."The report also reveals a few details about iOS 9

Upcoming Revamped Apple Music Streaming Service Won't Offer Free Ad-Supported Tier

As rumors gear up surrounding the revamped Apple iTunes/Beats music service, a new report claims that the company will opt out of offering a free advertising-supported base tier for its upcoming streaming service (via Re/code). The company will allow customers an initial trial period of some kind, but following that users will have to pay to continue listening to music, the cost of which most recent rumors agree will be around $7.99. With the slow decline of digital downloads and the steady rise of streaming services, sources close to Apple media head Eddy Cue and Beats Music founder Jimmy Iovine state that the two agree the music industry, and streaming specifically, “needs to get behind a paywall." Apple executives have been telling the music industry it can help them roll back the tide of free digital music by relaunching its own subscription streaming service this year. Unlike Spotify and YouTube, Apple’s service won’t offer a free “tier” of music interspersed with ads — after an initial trial period, you’ll need to pay to play. Now Apple is negotiating with the music labels for licenses for a revamped version of Beats. Sources say Apple would like to make a splash by getting high-profile artists to distribute their music with Apple before it makes its way to other services. If made official by Apple, the move would be a direct contrast to a service like Spotify, which allows its 60 million worldwide users (15 million of which are paid subscribers) to listen to anything they want for free, with ads interspersed within the music. Jonathan Prince, head of

BBC Radio DJ Zane Lowe Joining Apple's iTunes Radio Effort

Noted DJ Zane Lowe, who has headed up BBC Radio 1's popular evening new music show for over a decade, is leaving the broadcaster next month to join Apple, reports BBC News. Lowe has won a number of awards for his radio show and other work over the years, and was nominated for a Grammy Award this year for his role in writing and producing Sam Smith's album "In The Lonely Hour." Zane said: "I want to thank everyone at Radio 1 for their support and friendship. "The station has allowed me to share incredible music with the country's best music fans." During his time on the station, the New Zealand-born DJ has become well known for championing emerging talent and many acts have made their breakthrough after having one of their tracks named as "hottest record in the world" on Zane's show.While Lowe has apparently not publicly stated what role he will take on at Apple, The Guardian says it will involve the company's iTunes Radio streaming music service. Lowe's role will likely include more than iTunes Radio at some point, however, with Apple currently working toward a revamp of the Beats Music subscription streaming service it acquired last year. Part of the plan reportedly involves folding Beats into the iTunes brand and integrating it with OS X and iOS. As a result, there may be some changes in store for iTunes Radio, which has reportedly seen a lukewarm reception and has only expanded to Australia since its U.S. launch in late 2013, despite rumors of a number of other countries receiving access by early

Apple's iTunes Radio, Beats, and Others Hit With Unpaid Royalty Suits Over Pre-1972 Music

Following a lengthy lawsuit that pitted Sirius XM Radio against members of classic rock band The Turtles in a fight over royalties for music recordings made before 1972, new class action lawsuits have been filed against Apple, Sony, Google, and Rdio over their streaming music services (via The Recorder). As noted by Law360, Beats Music has also been hit with a suit. According to the suits, filed yesterday by Zenbu Magazines Inc., streaming services like iTunes Radio, Beats, and Google Play Music have been making money off of pre-1972 music recordings without paying any royalties to the owners of the original recordings. Zenbu owns the copyrights to many songs in question and is represented by The Law Office of Jack Fitzgerald in San Diego. The lawsuit seeks to create a certified "class of all owners of recordings made before February 15, 1972, whose recordings appear on streaming services."While musical compositions have been protected under U.S. copyright law since 1831, sound recordings were only added to the federal copyright act in 1972. That's meant that the holders of copyrights to pre-1972 compositions—largely music publishers—have been paid royalties for public performances while those holding the copyrights to recordings—largely record labels—have not.As noted by The Recorder, last year a judge in Los Angeles decided to extend ownership rights for pre-1972 recordings to include public performances. Similarly, in that case of Sirius XM versus owners of the sound recordings made by The Turtles in the 1960s, U.S. District Judge Philip Gutierrez ruled against

Apple Launches Ten Holiday-Themed iTunes Radio Stations

A few weeks out from Christmas, Apple has turned on nearly a dozen holiday-themed iTunes Radio stations that offer a variety of genres from sing-a-longs for kids to old seasonal classics. The ten stations include: Children's Christmas Holiday Sing-Along, Country Holiday, Classical Holiday, Holiday Classics, Holiday Hits, Latin Holiday, Rockin' Holiday, Soulful Holiday, Swingin' Holiday and The Sounds of Christmas. Only a handful of the stations are readily available in the Featured Stations section on the front of the iTunes Radio tab, but all of them can be found with a quick search. iTunes Match subscribers can listen to the stations ad-free, as per usual, but non-subscribers can expect occasional advertisements between songs. The Christmas themed stations can be added to users' My Stations lists now, in iTunes on Mac and PC, and in the Music app on iOS. iTunes Radio remains available only in the United States and Australia, despite rumors of additional "early 2014"

Apple's Digital Stores, iTunes Radio Down for Some Users [Update: Fixed]

According to Apple's System Status Page, some users are unable to access the App Store, iTunes Store, Mac App Store, and iBooks Store. iTunes Match, iTunes Radio, and iTunes in the Cloud also appear to be experiencing issues. App Store users were also seeing problems accessing apps on Tuesday, making this the second outage the sore has seen this week. Problems appear to have began at approximately 1:30 PM Pacific Time, and are ongoing. Apple does not say how many users are affected by the outage, but there are multiple reports of problems on Twitter and other social networking sites. Some users are not experiencing any issues, however, and appear to be able to access all services without a problem. Update 5:40 PM PT: Apple's System Status page suggests the outage is now over.

Beats Music CEO Ian Rogers to Also Head Up iTunes Radio

Apple’s $3 billion acquisition of Beats was finalized today, and as the two companies merge into one, the positions some former Beats employees will take on at Apple are becoming clearer. According to a new report from The Wall Street Journal, Ian Rogers, who serves as the CEO of Beats Music, will take Apple’s own iTunes Radio streaming music service under his wing, heading up both streaming music services. Rogers will likely report to Eddy Cue, the SVP of Internet Software and Services at Apple, who oversees all of Apple’s content stores.Rogers, a former Yahoo executive, will run both teams to create cohesion in Apple’s streaming-music options, according to the people familiar with the matter. Pandora and Spotify, the two-biggest streaming music services, each offer both a free ad-supported service and a subscription-based service.As previously reported, Beats co-founders Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young (aka Dr. Dre) are also expected to take on senior roles at the company, and while it remains unclear exactly what the duo will do at Apple, Iovine may also become involved with iTunes, securing deals and marketing opportunities. Earlier today, Apple posted a message on its website welcoming the Beats team to the family, as Beats shut down its own online store. While many former Beats employees are transitioning to Cupertino or continuing to work in a Los Angeles office, approximately 200 employees in human resources, finance, and other areas where there was overlap with Apple have only been given temporary positions as the company tries to find new roles for them.

Apple Adds ESPN and Local NPR Stations to iTunes Radio

Apple has expanded the content available on iTunes Radio with a new ESPN Radio station and more than 40 local National Public Radio (NPR) stations. First noticed by AppleInsider, the new stations can be accessed directly within iTunes Radio on both iOS devices and desktop computers via a search, though the new stations may be available to some users in the Featured section. The ESPN Radio station on iTunes Radio offers the same live streaming content that is available through traditional ESPN radio affiliates, and the schedule of content can be found on the ESPN Radio website. Content includes national sports talk shows including Mike & Mike, The Freddie Colman Show, The Dan LeBatard Show, and more. Special events, such as the 2014 FIFA World Cup, Major League Baseball playoffs and World Series, and college football will be broadcast on the station, kicking off with the broadcast of the Atlanta Braves vs. the Colorado Rockies game on Wednesday, June 11 at 5 PM Pacific Time."We are thrilled to make our industry-leading sports talk and championship play-by-play content available to fans via iTunes Radio," said Traug Keller, senior vice president, ESPN production business divisions. "And we are excited to partner with Apple to expand our digital reach. Our fans can look forward to expanded ESPN Audio offerings on both the national and local sports levels in the future."Along with the new ESPN station, there are over 40 new NPR stations from cities like Los Angeles, San Diego, Chicago, Austin, and more. NPR first came to iTunes Radio back in March with the launch of a

Apple Managers Didn't Know How Spotify Worked, Engineers Used Pandora Over iTunes Radio

Engineers working on iTunes Radio prefer to listen to Spotify and Pandora because they were better platforms, according to a new report from Buzzfeed. It claims that not only did those employees prefer Apple's competitors over its own radio service, but it says middle management was willfully ignorant about how Spotify worked, thinking it was just another streaming service. It's "why they thought iTunes Radio would be a Spotify killer," said one employee. The piece alleges that Apple has been overly focused on driving downloads on iTunes and slow to adapt to a shift in user listening preferences towards subscription-based services. Past and current employees in the company with direct knowledge of iTunes and Apple's services Ping and iTunes Radio told BuzzFeed that Apple engineers involved with those products often preferred to use Spotify and Pandora. "Everyone's excuse was it's because we work on iTunes, running and closing the app after every code change," one source said. "But it's really because Spotify has all the free music with a real social platform." In their personal time, sources said, employees used Spotify and Pandora. Apple employees confirmed that management actively ignored iTunes' streaming competitors, with some managers refusing to open or use Spotify. One source said that as recently "as last year," some members of management didn't even know that Spotify was an on-demand streaming service, assuming it was just a radio service.The disconnect between employees, along with a belief that Spotify and Pandora weren't real threats to iTunes, may

Apple to Bolster iTunes Radio With Localized Ads, Content

Apple has plans to add both targeted local advertisements and broadcast radio stations to its iTunes Radio music service in the coming months, according to a report from The Information. The move will boost its advertising efforts and introduce new content on iTunes Radio, better positioning it to compete with market leader Pandora. Apple is also expected to begin advertising its own iTunes content through the iAd network. In a move that strikes at the heart of Pandora's advertising business, iTunes Radio is expected to enable locally targeted advertising later this year, according to ad buyers who have spoken to Apple. Apple may begin promoting iTunes with "house ads" on its iAd mobile advertising network, an unusual move for the company.Apple has reportedly contacted broadcasters like Cumulus Media, the second largest operator of radio stations in America. Cumulus serves approximately 150 million listeners in 110 metropolitan areas and could potentially bring multiple local stations to iTunes Radio. Apple made its first moves towards introducing local content on iTunes Radio earlier this year with the launch of the National Public Radio (NPR) channel, which will eventually include local stations offering a mix of live and taped news. Since the launch of iTunes Radio, Apple has had a renewed focus on advertising, redirecting its iAd team to monetize iTunes Radio through advertising sales. While the company has signed deals on a national level with several high profile companies like McDonald's, Nissan, Pepsi, and Procter & Gamble, local ads are new territory. The

U.K. iTunes Radio Competitor Shutting Down After Being Blocked From iAd

London-based streaming music service is shutting down following the withdrawal of its main investment partner, TNT, a Russian television channel. TNT withdrew its funding following an organizational change, said VentureBeat.In a blog post, the team said the withdrawal of funding was a surprise and that the company has no time to find new investment.We’ll keep this short because we’re pretty shell-shocked.It’s game over for investor, who’s been along for the ride since day one, has unexpectedly pulled our funding. It’s come so out of the blue that we don’t have time to find new investment. So, with enormous regret, we have to shut up shop.This is a poetically crappy turn of events as our young business was showing real promise. Our apps and web player are looking super-nice and we had 1,158,914 registered users in a little over a year. Yep.A massive thanks to everyone that helped us get this far. We’re absolutely gutted. But it’s been a real pleasure.Earlier this month, it was reported that had been blocked from using Apple's iAd advertising service to gain new users because it competed too closely with Apple's own iTunes Radio service, which is preparing to launch in the United Kingdom.It's unclear whether the iAd blocking had anything to do with the removal of funding, but it was likely a blow to the company

Apple Blocks iAd Advertising Ahead of U.K. iTunes Radio Launch

London-based streaming-music service says it has been blocked from advertising on Apple's iAd network because it is a threat to the Cupertino company's iTunes radio, reports CNET. Similar to iTunes Radio, offers genre and artist-based streaming radio stations with a library of over 22 million tracks. "We were surprised at Apple's decision to ban us from their iAd network as their iTunes Radio service isn't even available in the UK," the spokesman told CNET. " gives you 22 million tracks for £1 a month -- the price of a single download on iTunes -- so I can see why they'd want to protect their business." Apple may be blocking as it prepares to launch its iTunes Radio service in the U.K. The service debuted in the U.S. alongside the release of iOS 7 last fall and was recently extended to Australia. It is expected to debut in the U.K. sometime in early 2014. Over the past several months, some iPhone owners in the U.K. have reported intermittent connections to the iTunes Radio service, suggesting Apple is in the final stages of preparing the product for an imminent launch. Bringing iTunes Radio to countries worldwide is a top priority for Apple, says senior vice president of Internet software and services Eddy Cue, who confirmed the company plans to offer the service "in more than 100 countries."

iTunes Radio Adds NPR, with More News Channels on the Way

Apple's iTunes Radio streaming music service is expanding today with the addition of a new National Public Radio (NPR) channel, reports Re/code.NPR’s channel, which should be live today, will offer a free stream, 24 hours a day, which mixes live news with segments from pre-recorded shows like “All Things Considered” and “The Diane Rehm Show.” NPR officials say that within weeks, some of the broadcaster’s local stations should begin offering their own channels, with a similar mix of live and taped news.NPR has also been working on bringing on-demand programming based on users' tastes to its mobile apps, and it is possible that functionality could come to the station's iTunes Radio service as well. The report notes that it is currently unclear what the business relationship between Apple and NPR is in terms of generating revenue for NPR, but NPR vice president of digital media Zach Brand says that Apple has been "very understanding of the business model" used by the nonprofit. iTunes Radio launched in the United States last September alongside iOS 7, and expanded to Australia last month. Apple is reportedly looking to also expand iTunes Radio to the UK, Canada, and New Zealand early this year, with an eventual goal of bringing the service to at least 100 countries. Update: Direct link to NPR

Apple Considering Standalone iTunes Radio App for iOS 8

Following its introduction at WWDC 2013, Apple's iTunes Radio music streaming service launched alongside iOS 7 in September of last year. The service is available within iTunes on the desktop and the Music app for iOS, allowing users create channels based on artists, genres or songs. To bring attention to the service and increase engagement, Apple may be spinning off iTunes Radio into its own app in iOS 8, according to a report by 9to5Mac.As a standalone application, users will be able to more quickly access iTunes Radio. Psychologically for users, iTunes Radio will be its own app competing with the likes of the Pandora, Spotify, and iHeartRadio apps found on the App Store. The benefit for Apple, however, is that iTunes Radio will be pre-installed. The interface for the standalone iTunes Radio application is said to be nearly identical to the one found inside of the iOS Music app and its Home screen icon is a terrestrial radio graphic atop a red background. Apple originally wanted to launch iTunes Radio as a standalone app alongside iOS 6, but those plans allegedly fell through when licensing negotiations with major music labels hit a snag. As envisioned for iOS 8, the new standalone iTunes Radio reportedly would be similar to the current Music app version, continuing to offer Featured Stations and include a browsable music history. iOS users would maintain their ability to create and manage their music channels as well as purchase individual tracks. Despite being buried within the iOS Music app, iTunes Radio continues to grow in popularity. A recent report from