Jimmy Iovine on the Future of Apple Music: 'We're Building the Right Hybrid'

jimmy iovine appleApple Music executive Jimmy Iovine spoke with Billboard in a wide-ranging interview that was shared this afternoon, where he shared his thoughts on his team, the importance of merging technology and popular culture, and the future of Apple Music.

According to Iovine, Apple is aiming to build a music service that is both "technologically and culturally adept," bridging technology with art and music creation. He declined to share details on what that might look like, but said Apple is aiming for "the right hybrid."

And what we're going to do, what we're doing now that hasn't been revealed yet, is we're building the right hybrid. And we believe it's the right hybrid, and the combination of these things together, we'll build a music service that is technologically and culturally adept.

Iovine's team, many of whom have worked with him on Beats and Beats Music long before the acquisition by Apple, is essential to to the music experience that the Apple Music team is constructing. He had high praise for Larry Jackson, Trent Reznor, Luke Wood, and Eddy Cue. "It took 10 years to develop this team," he said, highlighting their ability to understand the intersection of technology and popular culture. "The people were chosen and understood how to work in both worlds," he said. "This is not something where you can just pluck somebody out of the air."

On further exploring video and film projects, Iovine says Apple is going to do "whatever we believe is great." He went on to explain that Apple is not in the record business and is instead building something that can help labels, artists, and undiscovered artists, describing the effort as an "adjunct to labels and artists."

We're going to do whatever we believe is great. We are going to make a combination of tech and popular culture that is exciting and adept at both areas. So that's what you're starting to see. It's going to have a voice. It's not going to be just a utility -- "Go here and get your music, good luck," or, "We're going to send you a list" -- that's great, but that's not what this is. That's not what this was, anyway.

Apple Music, led by Jimmy Iovine, Eddy Cue, and the rest of the team, has been steadily growing since its 2015 launch. Apple has experimented with using exclusive content and music releases to draw subscribers, and there's a heavy focus on video content. In addition to several Apple-produced music videos and films created in collaboration with artists, Apple is also exploring at least two TV shows, Vital Signs and Carpool Karaoke, that will promote the service.

In another interview with BuzzFeed News in late September, Iovine explained that Apple Music had been a bit too ambitious when it first launched, but that Apple is now hitting its stride and figuring out what works and what doesn't work.

The full interview with Jimmy Iovine, which includes a lot more detail on his team and what it takes to develop a service like Apple Music, can be read over at Billboard.

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
51 months ago
a "culturally adept" music service? WTF does that even mean?
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
51 months ago
Sometimes there are just people that when you see them and they talk, my gut feeling just tells me: "That's a person you can't trust". Sorry - he's on that list. Maybe I just don't know him IRL, but immah have to go with my gut right now. Sorry for going offtopic. Just.. when I read this news and his quotes, I just think it's thin air.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
51 months ago


According to Iovine, Apple is aiming to build a music service that is both "technologically and culturally adept," bridging technology with art and music creation.

I'd be happy if they could make a music app that just, you know, played the music I already chose to sync to my phone, like I used to be able to do with my iPod.

I really wish they'd separate the "Music" app, which should be used for playing the music on your phone, regardless of where it came from; and the "Apple Music" app, which is the one you'd use if you want to pay $10/month to be "culturally adept"(?!).

Also, what an industry/label-***-kissing slime-ball. He's the embodiment of what's rotten at Apple these days.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
51 months ago
"we'll build a music service that is technologically and culturally adept."

Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
51 months ago
Another dinosaur in the music business, he's all hype. The music business needs a full overhaul! People like him used artists to get to where they are now and haven't built anything. As a person who worked in the music business for nearly 20 years I can honestly say none of them have a clue how to build the right platform.. Now having said that.. Apple might know how, but there's no way it has anything to do with him and his ego.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
51 months ago
In other words: "We've got great innovation in the pipeline."

Sounds familiar :rolleyes:
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

Here's How You Can Download iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 Around the World [It's Out]

Wednesday September 16, 2020 2:36 am PDT by
Apple's official public release of iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 dropped on Wednesday, September 16, just a day after the company released the Golden Master to third-party developers. Also set to be made available to the general public for the first time are watchOS 7 and tvOS 14. Getting Started With iOS 14 Video Click image to watch iOS 14 Getting Started While that's left a lot of developers...

When Will the iPhone 12 Launch? Here's What We Know

Wednesday September 16, 2020 6:12 am PDT by
Yesterday's "Time Flies" Apple event saw the release of the Apple Watch Series 6, Apple Watch SE, iPad 8, and iPad Air 4, but no new iPhone models. Rumors before the event strongly alleged that it would not see the unveiling of new iPhones, with many reports pointing to an October launch. The lack of new iPhone models yesterday seems to confirm that the iPhone 12 lineup will not appear...

Apple Releases iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 With Home Screen Redesign, App Library, Compact UI, Translate App, Scribble Support, App Clips, and More

Wednesday September 16, 2020 12:48 pm PDT by
Apple has released iOS 14 and iPadOS 14, the newest operating system updates designed for the iPhone and iPad. As with all of Apple's software updates, iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 can be downloaded for free. iOS 14 is available on the iPhone 6s and later, while iPadOS 14 is available on the iPad Air 2 and later. The updates are available on all eligible devices over-the-air in the Settings app. To ...

Apple Updates AirPods 2 and AirPods Pro Firmware to Version 3A283

Monday September 14, 2020 11:24 am PDT by
Apple today released new 3A283 firmware updates for the second-generation AirPods and the AirPods Pro. The second-generation AirPods are being updated from the 2D15 firmware they were previously running, while the AirPods Pros are being updated from the 2D27 firmware they had installed previously. Apple does not provide details on what's included in refreshed firmware so we don't know what's ...

Spotify Says Apple One Bundle Will Cause 'Irreparable Harm to Developer Community'

Tuesday September 15, 2020 12:26 pm PDT by
Apple today announced Apple One, a series of new subscription bundles that provide access to various Apple services at a combined monthly price. In response, Spotify sent out statements (via Peter Kafka) to the press decrying Apple's anti-competitive behavior and calling on "competition authorities" to stop Apple before it is able to cause "irreparable harm" to developers.Once again, Apple...

iOS 14, iPadOS 14, watchOS 7, and tvOS 14 Will Be Released September 16

Tuesday September 15, 2020 11:06 am PDT by
Apple today announced that iOS 14, iPadOS 14, watchOS 7, and tvOS 14 will be officially released on Wednesday, September 16. Apple has seeded the final Golden Master beta versions of each update to developers in advance. ‌iOS 14‌ and iPadOS 14 introduce dozens of new features, including a redesigned Home Screen that supports widgets on the iPhone and iPad for the first time. For more...

New AirPods Pro Firmware Introduces Spatial Audio Support and Automatic Switching

Monday September 14, 2020 12:22 pm PDT by
The new 3A283 firmware that Apple released for the AirPods Pro today appears to introduce support for Spatial Audio, a new feature coming to the higher-end AirPods with iOS 14. Multiple reports on Twitter and the MacRumors forums indicate that the firmware update adds a "Spatial Audio" option to the Control Center, which can be activated to enable the feature. Note that using Spatial Audio...

Apple Releases Safari 14 for Mac Ahead of macOS Big Sur Launch

Wednesday September 16, 2020 1:40 pm PDT by
macOS Big Sur didn't launch alongside iOS 14, iPadOS 14, tvOS 14, and watchOS 7 today, with the update coming later this fall, but Apple did release the Safari 14 update for macOS Catalina and macOS Mojave users. Safari 14 brings improved performance, customizable start pages, a Privacy Report to see which cross-site trackers are being blocked, and a new tab bar design that provides tab...

Full Transcript of Apple's 'Time Flies' Event With Apple Watch and iPad Updates

Tuesday September 15, 2020 8:46 am PDT by
Apple's virtual "Time Flies" event kicks off today at 10:00 a.m. Pacific Time, with Apple expected to debut new Apple Watch and iPad models, but it appears we may not see the iPhone 12 until next month. While we're not expecting to see new iPhones today, Apple's software updates for its various platforms are likely nearly ready for launch, so we may be hearing more about them today. Check...

Everything Apple Announced at Today's iPad and Apple Watch Event in Just Seven Minutes

Tuesday September 15, 2020 2:19 pm PDT by
Apple today held its annual September event, but this year was a bit different because no new iPhones were announced. The "Time Flies" event focused on the Apple Watch Series 6 and the iPad Air, and saw the debut of a new Apple One services bundle. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. It took Apple an hour to introduce the new devices, but we've recapped the event in...