Apple presents iTunes Radio, its free streaming music service

Apple presents iTunes Radio, its free streaming music service

iTunes Radio is coming on September 18th. It is Apple’s ad-supported streaming music service. It’s not quite a Spotify alternative, being closer to Pandora or Last.fm’s services.

Available for all iOS devices, Macs and Apple TV, iTunes Radio lets you listen to music based on your tastes, music library, particular artists or genres. Apple says it already has over 200 radio stations based on genre.

iTunes Radio uses the entire iTunes catalog as a resource, and the more you use it, the more it learns your tastes. You can tell the app ‘play more like this’, or ‘never play this song again’, and put artists and genres in white or black lists.

On mobile devices, iTunes Radio is integrated with Siri, so you can ask the iOS assistant to change station, song or give you more information on what’s playing.

Apple’s goal is to make advertising not too invasive, playing every few songs. But like Spotify, you can subscribe to iTunes Match to remove ads altogether. It’s a lot cheaper than Spotify at $24.99 a year, but iTunes Radio is also a lot more limited in terms of playback options.

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