Apple Music: what you need to know to get started

Apple Music matches rivals Spotify and Deezer when it comes to streaming music

Apple Music: Getting started seems easy but it can take a while to inform Apple exactly what music you like. Photograph: Yui Mok/PA Wire

Apple Music: Getting started seems easy but it can take a while to inform Apple exactly what music you like. Photograph: Yui Mok/PA Wire

 

You’ve downloaded the latest iOS update and suddenly there it is: Apple Music. The streaming service is built into your regular music app, sitting alongside your purchases from iTunes and the music you’ve ripped from your CDs.

Getting started seems easy but it can take a while to inform Apple exactly what music you like. When you begin, you’re offered a number of music genres in floating bubbles.

You tap the bubble once if you like the music, and t expands; twice if you love it and the bubble grows more. Tapping and holding gets rid of genres you really don’t like.

Then you can add specific artists to give Apple Music a better idea of where your tastes lie. It’s time-consuming, but if you want Apple to come up with the best recommendations for you, you have to suffer through it. You can go back later and edit this in the account tab.

Once in the app, you have a few tabs to choose from. For You takes those artists you liked and turns them into recommendations. New showcases the new music on the service. Radio allows you access to Beats 1 and radio stations for specific genres like Irish hits, pop and so on,

Connect puts you in touch with artists, another of Apple Music’s main selling points. My Music is pretty much everything else.

For the most part, Apple Music matches services like Spotify and Deezer when it comes to streaming music. One or two things irked though. It crams so much in, it can be difficult to find what you are actually looking for through the noise.

And creating playlists is less intuitive than other services. You need to create the blank playlist first before you can add songs to it; often, I create playlists within Deezer, for example, as I find songs.

Will Apple Music persuade Spotify fans to switch? That family plan (€14.99) is tempting, but extras such as Connect and even having Taylor Swift’s new album may not have the sway the company was hoping for.

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