While Apple Music isn’t set to go live for the general populous until around 4PM (London) today, Fortune has shared reactions from those select few that have been granted access to take the service for a spin, ahead of its wider public launch.
Overall, reactions do appear to be mixed.
Walt Mossberg for Re/Code hinted at the service being somewhat ‘confusing’ to the user, initially, and when asked if he would pay $120 per year for it the long-trusted journalist said it would be a “tentative yes,” adding that “it will take time” in order get to grips with the service’s many features.
“Would I pay $10 a month — $120 a year — to use it? My answer is a tentative yes, with some caveats. Apple has built a handsome, robust app and service that goes well beyond just offering a huge catalog of music by providing many ways to discover and group music for a very wide range of tastes and moods. But it’s also uncharacteristically complicated by Apple standards, with everything from a global terrestrial radio station to numerous suggested playlists for different purposes in different places.”
“And the company offers very little guidance on how to navigate its many features. It will take time to learn it. And that’s not something you’re going to want to do if all you’re looking for is to lean back and listen.”
Meanwhile, Ed Baig for USA Today has also gone “hands-on” with Apple Music ahead of its wider public launch, citing that Apple’s “Connect” feature seems pretty thin – at least initially, anyway.
Apple has high hopes for the Connect feature that connects artists to fans. The artists you follow may post extra music and videos, photos, in-progress song lyrics, info on tour dates and more. Having indicated an interest in classical music, I found myself connected to the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra where conductor Sir Simon Rattle in a video discussed streaming classical music. For all its promise, the Connect area seems pretty thin at the outset.”
Apple Music is set to go live at 8AM Pacific, alongside the public release of iOS 8.4.
Beats 1 will see its first-ever broadcast at 9AM Pacific.