Why I’m worried about Apple Music

“I’m a little worried about Apple Music,” Dan Moren writes for Six Colors. “And it’s not the wrangling over terms with artists, or the muddled messaging, or even that the catalog might be on the limited side. It’s in an area where Apple traditionally excels: the execution of the product itself.”

“For one thing, Apple Music is a cloud service, and the company’s track record with those types of products is… uneven, at best,” Moren writes. “For another, the trend in both the iOS and Mac versions of Apple’s music-playing software seems to be towards both more confusing and less polished — none of which inspires confidence.”

“Put the best parts of those two together, and Apple Music could be a winner, easy,” Moren writes. “Put the worstparts together, and, well… like I said, I’m worried.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Apple has three months where nobody’s paying (but them) to make any adjustments necessary.

That said, first impressions are everything (see: Maps), therefore, right out of the gate, Apple cannot afford to fork up Apple Music to any significant degree. If the thing routinely shits the bed in MobileMesian splendor, all bets are off.

Good luck, Apple! No pressure!

34 Comments

  1. ClickBait BS. I’ve purchased hundreds of songs, movies and audiobooks from iTunes – never an error.

    And when I made a mistake, like ordering two of something, they always did the right thing. No questions asked.

      1. Maybe at first, as no-life lizards laying in the weeds spring up to snap at you, but in time, more considered votes trickle in, and they even things out a bit.

            1. Those trollbot assaults represent one kind of warfare— they are like carpet bombing. This kind of thing is more like snipers. Slime takes many forms.

    1. It is important for Apple NOT to discount the large collection of songs customers already have, stored locally on their computers, accumulated and organized with care over many years. Suddenly pushing streaming music (what Apple calls “radio”) will alienate existing customers; many have spent thousands of dollars buying songs from the iTunes Store over the years.

      Looking at the current marketing, Apple seems to understand the dilemma. It all starts with your existing music collection; Apple is placing value in what you have now. From there, (1) Apple Music helps “discover” new songs to add to your library, (2) expand your experience through “radio,” and (3) “connect” with your favorite artists.

      Apple likes THREE in marketing. New products are often described by focusing on three key points, even if the product has a long list of specific features. iPhone was first described as (1) a mobile phone, (2) the best iPod ever, and (3) an Internet communication device. Apple Watch is (1) a precise and customizable time piece, (2) a revolutionary new way connect with others, and (3) a comprehensive health and fitness companion.

      For Apple Music, it’s the Discover, Radio, and Connect message. If Apple can appreciate its existing iTunes Store customers, and execute to focus on that simple “going forward” message (not get muddled by trying to be “everything”), Apple will succeed with Apple Music.

    2. To all you hopeless fanboys, I hope Apple Music is successful. Then you can come on here and tell me how wrong I am about Tim Cook. My prediction is that Apple Music is going to fail. I know this isn’t what you want to hear.

      Here’s what’s going to happen:

      -Most people will not subscribe to Apple Music for a variety of reasons. Some of the main reasons will be: 1) Too complex and verbose. 2) Competition with Sirius Satellite radio offering users non-data and wifi free music streaming. 3) Hamstrung having to use Wifi or data to stream (forget the car for the most part). 4) Content problems because chunks of musicians and labels won’t make enough money on the streaming model (we can see this with Spotify).

      -You’ll all make excuses for Apple and Tim Cook, saying to give it time, etc.
      -Time will pass and the problems will persist where Apple has few subscribers. Other options will be circling the waters.

      My look at all of this is that Apple needs to take a systems approach. For example, work on something like Netflix with all kinds of streaming TV Shows and movies that people really want. Add into this new platform streaming music. Make it have a kickass interface with dead simple discovery, etc. etc. With Apple Music, it doesn’t solve really any problems other than to create them (yet another music streaming service to buy into; no satellite streaming requiring wifi or data; lack of content for the forseeable future and specially lack of brand new music; confusion over purchasing music; to mention a few).

      1. The Apple Watch is highly successful by all accounts, so Apple Music is your new litmus test for Tim Cook as CEO? And, when Cook and Apple pass this test, what will you identify as the next litmus test? I suppose that you will keep doubling down until Apple finally does something less than spectacular…

        Your consistent pessimism is not only incredible skewed, but it is numbing lay tiring to read. Find a new gig, cause this one is old and incredibly lame.

        1. KingMel:

          The Apple Watch is NOT highly successful. It’s not anything. There are no sales figures. Only Apple knows the sales figures. Until they release the figures, we have no idea how many they’ve sold. Without that information, you CANNOT say that the Apple Watch is successful.

          Second, another indication of the success of a tech product is the use of the product. Look around you…

          1. Look around? I do and two years ago I saw many different kind of tablets when I flew. Now when I fly all I see our iPhones and iPads.

            Apple is doomed! Said chicken little.

          2. while I can agree with that there are no sales figures released at this point. However, no other manufacturer releases any sales figures for any of their products. Apple is usually the only one who does so? Try to find a press release from Samsung or Amazon about any product that have put out? There are none. Tim Cook had announced they will not be releasing sales numbers on the watch – I think that is fine. I do expect that at some point he will release them. we will be able to estimate sales from their financials however but won’t know those until late July.

            1. There are no sales numbers. Period. Information from third parties is hearsay. Nobody knows how many watches Apple has sold but Apple.

              I’m also pretty sure most people have never heard of Slice Intelligence before. It may be hard to fathom as a fanboy, but imagine the possibility of Apple paying them to release that information so Apple can appease investors and the public as well as as reassure people there are sales. At the same time, Apple gets off the hook of having to release sales figures as Slice takes the pressure off. When and if sales are good, Apple may release numbers where the past is just a distant memory.

              So they fill the gap right now using a third party where the figures may be inflated to some degree. It’s used to get people buying the watch and developing for it: to build confidence.

              This probably isn’t the case I’m just saying, it’s a possibility. Anyway, until Apple announces sales figures nobody knows how many watches are sold. Until then, all we have is our empirical evidence regarding the environment. And right now, virtually nobody is wearing an Apple Watch. This is based on what I see around me. I’ve travelled around over the past month in Canada, the US, and now in the Carribean. I’ve seen two people wearing the Apple Watch out of the zillion people whose paths I’ve crossed.

          3. Cook has boomed iPhone sales by introducing larger screen sizes with the 6 and 6+, something Steve Jobs didn’t want to do because he claimed the original iPhone screen size was “perfect”.

            Yeah, Tim Cook is doomed . . . .

    3. I had a weird thing happen where I purchased the movie Avatar. I was cleaning up disk space, figured it was safe in the cloud, but it was not.

      Even though I had purchased it, there was a period where Apple lost the rights to allow people to download it. So I was SOL and they couldn’t tell me if it would ever be fixed. About a year later Avatar was back available for download. But it was no longer the same version I purchased.

      I eventually wound up purchasing it again.

      1. I wonder, even if you had it on your computer would it have played during that interval? It is a strange world we live in now where armies of lawyers negotiate and renegotiate the fine print and if something goes wrong suddenly someone’s content goes dark.

        What changed in the movie after it came back? Formatting? Resolution? Editing?

        1. Definitely size. The new version online says the download is 6 or 7 GB depending on which one you get. There’s an extended cut. My copy is only 2.38GB. When I play the trailer online is is gorgeous. Sharp as a tack. The version I have is a bit fuzzy. It’s definitely SD. All of my movies have the little cloud icon to show that I can download them from the cloud EXCEPT Avatar. If I go to the store and try to “buy” it, it says I already own it. So I can’t download it again, even now. And if I want it, I have to choose buy again.

    4. …CONSISTENCY

      You might not get an error downloading from iTunes, but sometimes iTunes Match goes wacky.

      Cloud synced contacts often go wrong: frequency ‘home’ and ‘work’ etc labels all change to ‘other’, two weeks ago the first line and second line in all my addresses were swapped, last year several of my current address were wiped and replaced with ones from many years ago when I first put them in MobileMe, ‘home’ and ‘work’ addresses often duplicate so ‘home’ is repeated five times.

      That’s why I think the author’s comment about “uneven” delivery of cloud services is fair.

    5. I’m not only concerned about Apple Music, I’m concerned about the new Macbook, the Apple Watch… and Apple in general.

      If the aforementioned products are any indication, Apple Music is in for a bumpy ride. The new Apple appears to be fixated on squeezing as much money out of loyal customers as they can, while delivering very litte if any value.

      In my opinion, the Macbook is an underpowered piece of crap. Let’s not even talk about the watch. Frankly, I would rather continue to listen to the free variants of Spotify and Pandora. I do not have any faith in Tim Cook, even though I still use iPhones, iPads, and Mac computers.

      The fanboys on this site are delusional. They actually think Apple is putting forth great stuff.

  2. I’m a huge fan of Apple and I fee, for the most part, Tim Cook has done a great job leading Apple. But I have not liked those whole streaming thing since day 1 when they purchased Beats.

    I wish them all the luck in the world and, as an investor, would love to see it succeed, but I have many doubts.

  3. I listen to Spotify and Apple Radio when driving. In the case of Spotify once I choose a playlist it plays as long as I’m listening. When I tune in Apple Radio the music will play for 10-15 minutes and then the station goes blank/ dead. It may start again and go blank once again. It is real pain. This is happening because Tim Cook is very good in depositing his billions in foreign bank accounts but not so good in building the needed cloud infrastructure. At this time iCloud is worst of all cloud services. Imagine when 100 million are listening to Radio and streaming, what kind of quality they would get. I am really worried, Apple Music might end up as another Apple maps story.

  4. Maps is not just a disaster out the gate. It still is, maybe just less so. My experience after numerous sendings of corrections of address locations – places I know that are shown quite far from where they are, including numerous addresses on one street for apartments that Maps places in the center of a nearby shopping center whose official address is not even on the same street. NEVER did any of my crowd-sourced inouts show up as corrections in Maps. NONE. Waste my time once, twice, but never again. Maps app remains a failure. Tim Cooke should stop paying whomever is in charge of this garbage heap and get someone there who will not abuse his customers time and efforts.

    1. I like Apple Maps or maybe just can’t be bothered to use Google.

      But I have also had the experience of reporting a major street error several times, without a fix appearing. I tried reporting it at least three ways.

      (An overpass near a city center is erroneously treated as an intersection resulting in crazy directions.)

    2. I have quite the opposite experience. Google maps still has no clue how to find this one address and puts the pin in the neighboring town, while Apple maps puts it exactly on the correct spot. And no amount of user submissions to google has resolved it.

      At this point, Google and Apple seem to have similar share of errors. Once Apple gets public transportation directions, I’ll probably delete google!s map app.

  5. I’m not inclined to think that any review of an unreleased product is worth spit. Why not wait a couple of weeks and write the story after giving the app a try? Until then, it’s nothing to “worry” about.

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