Apple Music Has 99 Problems. And They Are…

apple99

Part I. Bug Problems.

1. Apple Music doesn’t work with Home Sharing.  So, that means you can’t play songs from your collection over Wifi to your iPhone or iPad (unless you keep the older iOS version, which doesn’t support Apple Music).

2. Which also means that Apple Music doesn’t work on Apple TV, at least not yet.

3. Meanwhile, YouTube works awesome on Google Chromecast.  And Spotify has been wired into Wifi-enabled stereo and entertainment systems like Sonos for years.

4. Apple Music doesn’t really work with Siri.

5. Beats 1 doesn’t really work with Siri.

6. Beats 1 crashes a lot (though it’s actually not that bad otherwise).

7. It’s really complicated to upgrade iTunes to get Apple Music (like, 28 steps complicated).

8. It’s really complicated for artists to upload their music onto Apple Music.

9. iCloud Music Library is ruining some users’ carefully-compiled collections with wrong track and album art information.  In fact, DJs are being warned against making the upgrade, while others have declared it a ‘disaster for your music collection‘.

10. That is, if you can even get iCloud Music Library to activate on iOS 8.4.

11. In other buggy matching scenarios, user collections are getting riddled with duplicates, for reasons that may have to do with complications between iTunes Music locally-stored collections, iTunes Match, and iCloud Music Library.

12. Users are also complaining that song star ratings are getting erased while ported into Apple Music.

13. Got smart playlists?  Apple Music and iCloud Music Library are changing those settings as well.

14. Like songs with explicit lyrics?  Apple Music and iCloud Music Library are also reportedly replacing those with clean versions.

15. There are even isolated reports of Apple Music wiping out some uploaded collections (so please back it up before you upload).

16. And sorry, Beats by Dre headphones are cool, but they really don’t sound that great (someone had to say it…)

 

prince_apple1

Part II. Music Collection Problems.

17. Apple Music doesn’t have The Beatles.

18. Apple Music doesn’t have Prince.

19. Apple Music doesn’t have Garth Brooks.

20. Apple Music doesn’t have Tool.

21. Most of the tracks from The Black Keys‘ latest two albums, El Camino and Turn Blue, are unplayable on Apple Music.

22. Rare albums, like Fleetwood Mac’s Future Games and Justice’s Planisphere are also missing.  But they are available elsewhere, of course.

23. Apple Music doesn’t have Bob Seger.

24. Apple does has Taylor Swift, but that’s just one exclusive.  Going forward, Apple Music will win some exclusives, but lose others in a fragmented release environment that features Tidal, Spotify, YouTube, Google Play Music All Access (or whatever it’s being called now), Rdio, Rhapsody, and a bunch of other services.

25. Apple Music, like Spotify, will lack a lot of DJ sets, remixes, and mash-ups, simply because they are so difficult to license.  That gives YouTube an even greater advantage.

26. Apple Music will never get a Jay Z exclusive!  In fact, they may have difficulty offering the catalog from one of the most important rappers in history (who also happens to beTIDAL’s owner).

27. But wait!  Exclusives mean nothing on streaming services, since YouTube always gets them five minutes later, and keeps getting re-uploads five minutes after every takedown (and if you don’t believe that, just ask Jay Z about his own TIDAL exclusive).

28. Meanwhile, Apple Music’s entry further balkanizes the terrain for superstar exclusives, making it doubly difficult for artists to gain traction.  Because the minute you go with Apple, you aren’t going with Spotify (and its 75 million users).  It’s a pissing match that doesn’t help artists.

29. And that damn U2 album is still in your Apple Music collection!

 

applemusicupdate29

Part III. Application Design Problems

30. You can’t try Apple Music without putting down your credit card, and opening the possibility of getting accidentally charged after three months even if you don’t want it.

31. Which would be okay, except that none of the other major, important competitors to Apple Music require this.  And that’s a serious competitive problem.

32. Don’t want to get charged automatically?  Then you need to go through a multi-step process to de-active automatic credit card charging.  And even then, you might accidentally get charged.

33. All of which goes to show that no one likes getting locked in!  Actually, the biggest post on Digital Music News over the weekend was a guide on how to make sure your credit card isn’t automatically charged by Apple after the three month trial.  And that’s a big problem.

34. And what happens if you lose your job and can’t afford Apple Music anymore?  On Spotify, you keep your collection but lose certain perks.  On Apple Music… you lose total access.

35. Apple Music is currently not available for Android, which eliminates a large majority of smartphone users (and 95%+ in countries like India).

36. And let’s be honest: when Apple Music is finally available on Android, it’s gonna suck real bad (please argue otherwise in comments…)

37. Beats 1 is a global radio station on the internet (otherwise invented in 1996).  But, the world doesn’t need another… radio station?

38. The interplay between iTunes Music, iTunes Match, and iCloud Music Library is confusing at best, with the latter introducing confusing metadata (see above) and now, DRM protection into the mix.  Match and iCloud are slightly different animals, with separate payments required, and differences most users will never quite comprehend (and there isn’t a user manual in sight).  But Apple says they are ‘complementary’.

39. On top of that, the pricing between iTunes Match and iCloud Music Player (ie, Apple Music) makes little sense, and will continue to confuse just about everyone.  If you stick with iTunes Match ($25 a year), you won’t have DRM introduced into your collection, and (we’re hearing) your metadata and track information is usually okay.  Jump over to iCloud Music Player ($9.99 a month) and all of that changes (and many are being warned against it), yet it’s still considered an ‘upgrade’ (or something like that).  Make sense?

40. And, it’s still not clear what happens if Apple Music doesn’t have a song that you have in your collection, but that you’ve already matched into iTunes Match.  Can you access that song anywhere, or only in certain locations?

41. iTunes is a now a heavy, cumbersome, and overwhelming app.

42. And just looking at the interface (UI/UX) and endless options, Apple Music is just way too complicated to use.  Which is a problem, because Spotify, SoundCloud, and YouTube are all incredibly simple.

43. You can’t follow friends on Apple Music like you can on Spotify.

44. And sorry, Apple Music is way too complicated for Apple Watch.

45. There aren’t as many people creating playlists on Apple Music as there are on Spotify, YouTube, and SoundCloud. The community is restricted, therefore there are fewer people curating and sharing music.

46. In fact, sharing overall is very difficult on Apple Music, given the limited number of people willing to actually put down their credit cards (or ultimately, pay).  That stands in stark contrast to SoundCloud and YouTube, which both have incredibly powerful network effects bolstered by easy accessibility and a far more lax licensing environments (which is another problem, entirely).

47. Apple Music inherits a lot of functionality and curation aspects from Beats Music, which failed to make an impact on the actual marketplace before being acquired by Apple.  Upon setup, users are plunged into genre and artist selection bubbles, a setup process that seems interesting but sacrifices the simplicity of rivals like Spotify and YouTube.

48. In fact, Beats reportedly had very few actual subscribers prior to the acquisition, which suggests problems hitting a consumer sweet spot.   And, reinforces the idea that Apple should have purchased Spotify instead.

49. And… video! Apple Music is focused on audio tracks, not music videos.  There’s not even a video option on 99.9% of all Apple Music tracks.  Which is a problem because the largest, most powerful music service in the world is all music videos, all the time.

50. Most consumers aren’t digital music experts, and a large percentage really don’t get the difference between a-la-carte downloads and streams.  That’s a problem, because Apple is doing almost nothing to educate them, and the migration from iTunes to Apple Music is complicated even for the experts.  The result?  Even more confusion on iTunes, and greater advantage for services like Spotify, Pandora, and YouTube that have native audiences that get it.

 

drdre

Part IV. A**hole Executive Problems

51. One of the top executives at Apple Music is Dr. Dre, who has a court-documented history of extreme physical brutality against women.  And, zero remorse for his actions (and violent and anti-gay lyrics).

52. Despite this, Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, has not only supported and praised Dr. Dre, he has elevated him to a top-level executive position.  Dre has yet to apologize for extremely homophobic lyrics and brutally beating up MTV veejay Dee Barnes, and has actually boasted about it.

53. During the Apple Music unveiling, Apple executive Jimmy Iovine deceptively featured an ‘independent artist’ who had virtually no music and no social media profile (but was being plugged by Iovine’s friend, a major label A&R guy).

54. And please don’t say that this wouldn’t have happened under Steve Jobs, a legendary asshole perhaps rivaled only by Dre himself.  This is starting to look like Apple’s long-term culture, and perhaps one explanation for the other 98 problems listened here. 

 

spotifyfree

Part V. Competitive and Strategic Problems.

55. In general, people are extremely hesitant to pay for music.  Which means that Apple’s insistence on limited trials and capturing credit cards is likely to fail (not saying it’s right, just saying it’s reality).

56. Apple Music is competing with Spotify, which has 20 million subscribers and is otherwise free for an unlimited period of time for 55 million people who don’t mind listening to ads.

57. You can’t easily port your extensive Spotify collection to Apple Music.

58. Apple Music is competing with YouTube, which is totally and completely free and has a much larger ‘collection’ of music.  In fact, YouTube is the largest source for music consumption in the world.

59. You can’t easily port your extensive YouTube favorites and playlists to Apple Music.

60. Apple Music is competing with SoundCloud, which is totally and completely free and has far greater musical depth in areas like electronica.

61. You can’t easily port your extensive SoundCloud collection to Apple Music.

62. Apple Music and Beats 1 are competing with Pandora, which is also totally and completely free.

63. Beats 1 is competing with the entire internet of streaming radio, which also includes iHeartRadio, Songza, and Spotify Radio.

64. Apple Music is about 10 years too late to music streaming, which is why there are about 10 other viable options available to users.  When it boils down to it, the world doesn’t really need another streaming music service right now.

65. Apple Music is rumored to have attempted to collude with major label partners to force services like Spotify and YouTube to enact paywalls and limit the amount of free listening.  But that quickly backfired when State Attorneys General in New York and Connecticut opened probes into alleged anti-competitive collusion.  All of which is a problem that will greatly affect Apple Music uptake.

66. As a result of the above, Apple Music is rumored to be negotiating an ad-supported, free tier of its own from major label partners, which would further confuse an already over-complicated product.

67. Apple isn’t a company dedicated to streaming; they lack critical expertise in this area.  Which might explain why Spotify is easier to set up, easier to use, and is 75 million users ahead in this market.

68. TIDAL has much better sound quality.

69. In fact, the sound quality on Apple Music is roughly that of Spotify, which offers another example of Apple Music’s lack of competitive edge.  Why switch again?

70. Actually, vinyl is way better than TIDAL, Apple Music, or anything digital.  How do we know?  Because Neil Young says so.

71. There’s another business model problem as it relates to hardware.  Simply stated, Apple Music doesn’t fit into an elegant hardware sales strategy like iTunes+iPod.  Pre-streaming, iPod was hand-in-glove with iTunes, but these days, consumers won’t shift their device-buying decisions because of Apple Music.

72. Which means that Apple Music will mean less to Apple’s overall bottom line, and could easily become de-prioritized in future years.

73. All of which brings us to one of the biggest problems of all: Apple isn’t leading here, they’re following.  They aren’t making a moribund market better, they’re just introducing something similar to everything else.  This time, the competition isn’t ‘hard to use’ or mediocre, it’s actually better.

74. Meanwhile, Apple isn’t even addressing one of the biggest emerging players in music: Facebook, whose video offering now rivals YouTube.

75. Additionally, Apple Music is doing little to innovate on the level of players like Snapchat, not to mention a whole litany of messaging apps.

 

9. iCloud Music Library is ruining some users' carefully-compiled collections with wrong track and album art information.  In fact, DJs are being warned against making the upgrade, while others have declared it a 'disaster for your music collection'. 10. That is, if you can even get iCloud Music Library to activate on iOS 8.4. 11. In other buggy matching scenarios, user collections are getting riddled with duplicates, for reasons that may have to do with complications between iTunes Music locally-stored collections, iTunes Match, and iCloud Music Library. 12. Users are also complaining that song star ratings are getting erased while ported into Apple Music. 13. Got smart playlists?  Apple Music and iCloud Music Library are changing those settings as well. 14. Like songs with explicit lyrics?  Apple Music and iCloud Music Library are also reportedly replacing those with clean versions. 15. There are even isolated reports of Apple Music wiping out some uploaded collections (so please back it up before you upload). 16. And sorry, Beats by Dre headphones are cool, but they really don't sound that great (someone had to say it...)  

prince_apple1

Part II. Music Collection Problems.

17. Apple Music doesn't have The Beatles.

18. Apple Music doesn't have Prince.

19. Apple Music doesn't have Garth Brooks.

20. Apple Music doesn't have Tool.

21. Most of the tracks from The Black Keys' latest two albums, El Camino and Turn Blue, are unplayable on Apple Music.

22. Rare albums, like Fleetwood Mac’s Future Games and Justice’s Planisphere are also missing.  But they are available elsewhere, of course.

23. Apple Music doesn't have Bob Seger.

24. Apple does has Taylor Swift, but that's just one exclusive.  Going forward, Apple Music will win some exclusives, but lose others in a fragmented release environment that features Tidal, Spotify, YouTube, Google Play Music All Access (or whatever it's being called now), Rdio, Rhapsody, and a bunch of other services.

25. Apple Music, like Spotify, will lack a lot of DJ sets, remixes, and mash-ups, simply because they are so difficult to license.  That gives YouTube an even greater advantage.

26. Apple Music will never get a Jay Z exclusive!  In fact, they may have difficulty offering the catalog from one of the most important rappers in history (who also happens to beTIDAL's owner).

27. But wait!  Exclusives mean nothing on streaming services, since YouTube always gets them five minutes later, and keeps getting re-uploads five minutes after every takedown (and if you don't believe that, just ask Jay Z about his own TIDAL exclusive).

28. Meanwhile, Apple Music's entry further balkanizes the terrain for superstar exclusives, making it doubly difficult for artists to gain traction.  Because the minute you go with Apple, you aren't going with Spotify (and its 75 million users).  It's a pissing match that doesn't help artists.

29. And that damn U2 album is still in your Apple Music collection!

 

applemusicupdate29

Part III. Application Design Problems

30. You can't try Apple Music without putting down your credit card, and opening the possibility of getting accidentally charged after three months even if you don't want it.

31. Which would be okay, except that none of the other major, important competitors to Apple Music require this.  And that's a serious competitive problem.

32. Don't want to get charged automatically?  Then you need to go through a multi-step process to de-active automatic credit card charging.  And even then, you might accidentally get charged.

33. All of which goes to show that no one likes getting locked in!  Actually, the biggest post on Digital Music News over the weekend was a guide on how to make sure your credit card isn't automatically charged by Apple after the three month trial.  And that's a big problem.

34. And what happens if you lose your job and can't afford Apple Music anymore?  On Spotify, you keep your collection but lose certain perks.  On Apple Music... you lose total access.

35. Apple Music is currently not available for Android, which eliminates a large majority of smartphone users (and 95%+ in countries like India).

36. And let's be honest: when Apple Music is finally available on Android, it's gonna suck real bad (please argue otherwise in comments...)

37. Beats 1 is a global radio station on the internet (otherwise invented in 1996).  But, the world doesn't need another... radio station?

38. The interplay between iTunes Music, iTunes Match, and iCloud Music Library is confusing at best, with the latter introducing confusing metadata (see above) and now, DRM protection into the mix.  Match and iCloud are slightly different animals, with separate payments required, and differences most users will never quite comprehend (and there isn't a user manual in sight).  But Apple says they are 'complementary'.

39. On top of that, the pricing between iTunes Match and iCloud Music Player (ie, Apple Music) makes little sense, and will continue to confuse just about everyone.  If you stick with iTunes Match ($25 a year), you won't have DRM introduced into your collection, and (we're hearing) your metadata and track information is usually okay.  Jump over to iCloud Music Player ($9.99 a month) and all of that changes (and many are being warned against it), yet it's still considered an 'upgrade' (or something like that).  Make sense?

40. And, it's still not clear what happens if Apple Music doesn't have a song that you have in your collection, but that you've already matched into iTunes Match.  Can you access that song anywhere, or only in certain locations?

41. iTunes is a now a heavy, cumbersome, and overwhelming app.

42. And just looking at the interface (UI/UX) and endless options, Apple Music is just way too complicated to use.  Which is a problem, because Spotify, SoundCloud, and YouTube are all incredibly simple.

43. You can't follow friends on Apple Music like you can on Spotify.

 

44. A

84 Responses

  1. Boots

    Is there more of a point to this article than to just cast obscene amounts of shade on Apple Music? A month ago, this news outlet had the pitchforks strictly pointed at Spotify, but this article almost makes it sound like we should be thankful that Spotify exists. Is that because it’s the devil we know?

    At least Apple is trying to get people to want to actually pay for streaming music, something Spotify seems to have no interest in trying to make happen, even if it’s to the detriment of the shrinking download business. As purveyors of music, I’m not exactly sure what we are supposed to be in support of (besides raising a white flag) based off of the slant of every one of these articles.

    • Paul Resnikoff
      Paul Resnikoff

      If Apple hired me as a consultant, I’d start with this document. This isn’t about liking, disliking, or ‘hating’ anyone, it’s about vetting through the very real issues that Apple Music faces. I don’t think Apple did a very good job reading the competitive marketplace, nor the consumers that exist within it. And the app itself has a lot of problems, even for a 1.0 (which it isn’t really). I hope you can view it in that light.

      • Remi Swierczek

        Ek’s invented TurboNapster and UMG induced Apple chase of Ek’s religion belongs to Disneyland!

        Mr. Cue, Clueless pursuit of cashless all inclusive streaming HAS TO STOP!

        Convert Radio, Pandora, SiriusXM orr Beats1 and streaming, AppleMusic, Spotify, TIDAL orrr Deezer to primitive discovery based music store!
        TWO BILLION USERS of Shazam, Soundhound, Google Voice and few other music and lyric ID services will make $100B music industry by 2020.

        NOOOOOOOOOOO BRAINER MUSIC NERDS!

        L. Greinge & D. Morris have to go!

    • Anonymous

      I’m looking for a song on Apple Music called ‘Desperation’, by Paul Resnikoff. Is it there yet? It seems like I can only find it here…

  2. James

    I agree. I got sucked into the hype, lost all sense and upgraded before waiting for proper reviews – never again! Problems included spinning wheel when clicking on tracks stored on my hard drive and spinning wheel when clicking into tracks to demo them plus playlist formatting issues, some in the old 12.1.2 format and some in the new shiny 12.2 format with comments and star ratings removed and no way to put them back in. After about an hour on Apple Music I soon realised I much preferred the functionality of Deezer and Spotify and consequently rolled back iTunes to 12.1.2 – if anyone else wants to do the same I wrote a blog post describing how..
    http://audiotexture.blogspot.com.es/2015/07/how-to-downgrade-from-itunes-122-to-1212.html

  3. James

    I agree. I got sucked into the hype, lost all sense and upgraded before waiting for proper reviews – never again! Problems included spinning wheel when clicking on tracks stored on my hard drive and spinning wheel when clicking into tracks to demo them plus playlist formatting issues, some in the old 12.1.2 format and some in the new shiny 12.2 format with comments and star ratings removed and no way to put them back in. After about an hour on Apple Music I soon realised I much preferred the functionality of Deezer and Spotify and consequently rolled back iTunes to 12.1.2 – if anyone else wants to do the same I wrote a blog post describing how..
    http://audiotexture.blogspot.com.es/2015/07/how-to-downgrade-from-itunes-122-to-1212.html

  4. BT

    @Boots: don’t say shit…Spotify free it’s a good way to someone start paying for music. Free users have two options: listen illegally or use Spotify for free and the artist get some money from that. And if you see some articles, a lot of users pay for Spotify right now, was free users in the past.

  5. Dan

    Angola??? Angola has WAY more than 99 problems, and the absence of Apple Music is certainly not one of them.

  6. Obama

    Problem #100: Paul Resnikoff writes bs articles.

  7. JC

    Paul, you seem a little obsessed with the Apple hatred. Just stop using it. The service works great for me and it’ll get better over time, just like Spotify did it. You might not like all the hype but it’ll attract a lot of people who’ve never paid for streaming music before and as a music publisher that is extremely encouraging. I do have some questions how the service revenue allocation works with the bundled services (interactive streaming, noninteractive

  8. JC

    (reposting because my comment was cut-off…DMN having usability problems? 😉

    Paul, you seem a little obsessed with the Apple hatred. Just stop using it. The service works great for me and it’ll get better over time, just like Spotify did it. You might not like all the hype but it’ll attract a lot of people who’ve never paid for streaming music before and as a music publisher that is extremely encouraging. I do have some questions how the service revenue allocation works with the bundled services (interactive streaming, noninteractive & locker service) but I presume it will be based on actual usage. You note our concern as publishers and its valid, but its hard to blame a service because we don’t like our statutory rates.

    As a consumer it seems to me that Apple can’t be beat here. As is the inclusion of the iTunes match element is huge for me and I’m sure a lot of other people. From my experience it is worked flawlessly. Living in LA that makes the service actually safer than any of the others. We get that you don’t like it, but could you find something else to write about than duplicative hate pieces? See if you can get an answer on the allocation of revenue for statutory rates purposes. Or make some useful suggestions on how to improve it. As it is you’re just flooding DMN with the same article over and over again.

  9. ANR

    This is an extremely poorly written post even by the lax DMN standards. The writer seems to have decided even before Apple Music was released that he wouldn’t like it. And goes on a war against it while freely promoting Spotify and Youtube – both of whom are available for free. Isn’t there any kind of editorial oversight for this website that calls itself ‘NEWS’?

    • Paul Resnikoff
      Paul Resnikoff

      You, and many others on this thread, are completely missing the point of this article. This isn’t about ‘hating’ anyone, it’s about offering serious analysis of a product with serious flaws, and calling out BS when it needs to be called out. If you’re an Apple executive, you need to read this for what it is: an unvarnished, very straight-ahead tear-down of a product with serious problems.

      The truth is, Apple executives probably breathe a lot of hype, they have giant egos and salaries, and it doesn’t seem to be helping. The result is products like these, in my opinion, This type of analysis never comes along, and when it does, the author gets branded as a ‘hater’. Doesn’t make sense, and I’m not buying into that, obviously.

      • There is something...

        A very poor analysis then… You keep only the points that you hate, and never speak about what is good. That’s what makes you a hater, not an “analyst”.

        • Paul Resnikoff
          Paul Resnikoff

          I’m deeply rejecting the presumption of your accusation, which states that this analysis is about me ‘hating’ Apple Music rather than simply pointing out, in a very directed and honest way, where this application and product vision falls short. That ties into a broader societal narrative surrounding ‘hating,’ which was started in urban/rap culture and refers to a petty reaction that is rooted in jealousy and inability to celebrate someone else’s success, hence, ‘don’t hate’.

          If you roll up in a Bentley, and I say, ‘That guy got lucky! His song actually sucks! He’s a loser!’ … then okay, perhaps you’d have some basis. But this?

          I’m not done: some things I actually do hate, and I’m sure you do to. Like traffic on the 405, a lack of rain in Southern California, middle seat in a crowded flight in coach class, that piece of dog poop that wasn’t cleaned up on the sidewalk. Yes I hate these things, and you know what, you should too! It’s a natural human reaction, there’s love, and there’s hate.

          Back to the Apple context, do I hate that Apple tried to pay nothing during its free trial? YES. Do I hate that Dr. Dre grabbed some woman by the hair and bashed her head into a wall, then said she deserved it. DEFINITELY!

          Do I hate that Apple’s competitive and strategic direction seems misguided and less driving than in earlier eras? Eh, not so much, but it’s worth mentioning and criticizing!

          So if all of that makes me a ‘hater,’ or ‘h8r’ or whatever, then okay. I’ve failed to convince you. But I had to at least try to clarify.

          • There is something...

            You can reject all you want Paul, that’s still how you come across.

            For over a month, every time you write something about Apple Music, it’s always in a negative manner. I’m not from the US and I don’t have a good knowledge of the “urban” culture there, but in my European culture, you’re what “we” call a “hater”. A few weeks back, you kept online an article about a mentally unstable musician pretending Apple is treating people to take down their music if they don’t sign to Apple Music, despite at that time most aggregators already stated that you have the choice. More than half of the “99” are on the same BS level, and you keep that kind of attitude. Serious journalism would speak about “pros” and “cons”, you obviously chose to keep only the “cons”. Well, ok, that’s your website, but again don’t be surprised to be labeled “hater”.

          • so waht?

            So what if it is all cons? The title of the article is Apple Music’s 99 problems. Paul points out 99 problems…. I see no issue here. I’m sure if Apple Music was better he would have 99 reasons to get Apple Music.

  10. Me

    100. All direct links to album download pages no longer automatically open up the iTunes store. They just go to the page in your web browser, and when you click “view in itunes” you are redirected to the Apple Music homepage. This is a major inconvenience for artists and labels trying to direct fans to iTunes to buy their records. And it’s even a bigger inconvenience for those who are Apple Affiliates, who are in jeopardy of losing commissions.

  11. Anonymous

    100. This is pro-Apple territory, but nobody defends the thing.

  12. Victor

    What a stupid worthless article, if you don’t like the service then don’t use it. Stop obsessing over it while other people are actually enjoying it.

  13. Appledystopia

    Weird that Apple Music doesn’t work on Apple TV, because I have been using it with… um, Apple TV since day 1. The Home Sharing thing is really old stuff. You upload any music that Apple Music doesn’t have into the iCloud Music Library. Then you use AirPlay. I stopped reading the article after the first few points, because it was already a trainload of BS derailing…

  14. P Star

    Totally agree on this and I haven’t even used Apple Music once. Here’s why I don’t have to:

    1) Apple’s competitive advantage since the iPod has been getting early adopters and, after building up their new fanbase, getting fanboys to jump on everything Apple.

    2) They’re about 4 or 5 years late to the technology, all of their demo has already gotten hooked on Spotify or YouTube.

    3) Even with a flawless roll-out they would have had a hard time (see points 1 and 2). But, it appears they haven’t had a flawless roll-out.

    Game Over. Nice try Apple. I still like your Macbooks though.

    • P Star

      Don’t understand the bashing of Paul on this message thread. If you’re a DMN reader you know that he trashes every service/product worth trashing. That’s what this website does, picks apart the problems with digital music ya goofballs!

      • There is something...

        Nope. Since the Apple Music official announcement, Paul has been bashing this service to a point it became incredibly ridiculous. Even using misleading or untrue informations to make everything look uglier.

        So is Apple Music perfect ? No, and there is space for improvement. But overall, I think it’s going in the good direction and it has already functionality that makes it, imho, the most convenient streaming service now. Obviously, this is something Paul struggles to deal with…

        • Anonymous

          “it has already functionality that makes it, imho, the most convenient streaming service”

          Exactly how is it more convenient than YouTube?

          Here’s how you use YouTube in 1 easy step:

          1) Click the song you want to hear.

          • Nina Ulloa

            yeah, you have to navigate to youtube first. with apple music i’m already listening to my own music in the app.

          • Anonymous

            “you have to navigate to youtube first”

            No, I just click the song title wherever I find it:

            In my mail, a forum, on YouTube, Twitter Facebook, anywhere…

            —————————————
            🙂 The real Anonymous 🙂

      • Troglite

        +1
        Success requires remaining open to or even seeking out critical input. Although the list was clearly stretched to meet the magic number 99, Paul has identified several real-world challenges that Apple Music needs to understand and potential address through strategic investments. Raising awareness of these challenges should be perceived as a benefit to Apple, not a hindrance.

  15. smg77

    I don’t understand why the guy who runs a website called Digital Music News hates everything about digital music.

  16. Janks

    Well I tried to read this, tried really hard. I was reading this looking for a reason to sway me to not use Apple Music, and all I found was a bunch of reasons why Spotify is better, which I guess at this point is true, but mind you, it just released. Anyways, then I got to reason #51 and at that point realized this article was full of crap and reaching.

  17. tcooke

    everyone wants to be in the game. oh, i can rap, i can sing, i can make a beat, i can be cool. no u cant. ballers only.

  18. Nina Ulloa

    i don’t know what Ari was up to, but Apple Music works great with Siri for me…. Including playing Taylor Swift.

    and Beats 1 only ever crashed one time for me and I’ve been listening a lot.

  19. Amy Weinhouse

    Why does anyone really care about this? It all seems so pointless.

  20. Olie

    It takes time to get the kinks out, and will, unlike DMN who’ve been around for HOW LONG? and STILL CAN’T get it right!

  21. DavidB

    Is there any indication yet of the uptake of Apple? I don’t suppose Apple will release any official info for a while, but one indirect indicator would be the impact it has on usage of Spotify. Spotify gives public info on playcounts of most tracks, updated every day or two, so in theory if anyone kept data on playcounts of a representative sample of tracks over the period before and after the introduction of Apple Music, it would be possible to get an indication of the short-term impact. E.g. if there was a 20% drop, one could speculate that 20% of Spotify users were trying out Apple. Unfortunately it didn’t occur to me to take any baseline data for the period ‘before’, but presumably someone (e.g. artists’ managers and independent record companies) might keep an eye on playcounts anyway. Of course they will get day-by-day accounting spreadsheets at some stage.

  22. Vin

    You are easily one of the biggest frauds in the history of America. Not that I’m backing apple because I love apple devices, but the fact that you think this program wouldn’t have 99 problems is insane. You took time out of your day to write 99 problems wrong with a program that released a little less than two weeks ago. It doesn’t matter how many bugs are in the system, where it works where it doesn’t, or what music is available. They were losing millions of dollars to other stream, i.e spotify and pandora. This saved them money right off the bat. Yeah it won’t work to tip top shape but that was the same with Spotify when it came out. Apple is an absolute powerhouse and I can’t wait to come back to this article and just rip you apart when the stock shoots up because of this. Ride one buddy. This article is pointless

  23. Gabyduchin

    I don’t understand why this article simply brain storms every possible little problem that Apple Music has. Some of these reasons are speculations, ridiculously unsubstantiated and others are simply not true…

    Apple Music has problems, and as a consumer I want the service to be scrutinized and criticized so it can get better. But why would someone write this article with twisted information just because… Please try to be a little more serious next time, have respect for yourself and your website. We are consumers and we’re looking for accurate and objective information, not this trash…

    Btw… I’m from Puerto Rico and want to know who told you the service is unavailable here? Do you have someone who is actually checking the facts to your articles? I recommend talking to HR and suggesting the hiring of such a person so your articles don’t suffer.

    Anyway, I’m looking for genuine information on the things that Apple needs to fix pronto. If anyone has a link to a credible source, please post.

  24. Whawha

    Paul, it seems the whole point of your articles on DMN is to say that no music service or store will ever save the music industry and artists ? Is that the point, we’re all doomed and might as well move right now to opening coffee shops or working in them ? I mean, we don’t need 100 articles a day to make that point..
    And if you think everyone in the world is doing it wrong, do you have a solution ?

    • Anonymous

      Huffington Post came up with this ‘What works’ concept. I like that: Find the good stuff and make it better.

      So, what works in the music industry?

      * YouTube (until Music Key).
      * iTunes (until Apple Music).

      Anything else?

      OK, that doesn’t seem to be the case. Let’s find/start/support/demand a replacement for YouTube and iTunes, then.

      —————————————
      🙂 The real Anonymous 🙂

  25. Jonathan

    On reddit and other forms of internet blogger with little to no quality control, text such as this ‘article’ would be called a “troll post.” It’s just a rant, devoid of perspective or intellect. Apple Music is not meant to be YouTube or SoundCloud. For goodness sake stop comparing them. It’s only tenuously related to Pandora, stop comparing them.

    There are a small number of technical issues with Apple Music that will improve with time. My 25,000 song library made it through the upgrade more or less without issues.

    I can’t get over this article making personal attacks against Dr. Dre and Steve Jobs as problems with Apple Music. That’s just disgusting.

    For all the ranting in this article, I predict that Apple Music will be hugely popular.

    • Anonymous

      “I can’t get over this article making personal attacks against Dr. Dre”

      Agree — it’s like these attacks against Bill Cosby.

      What’s the problem? Bitches got drugs for free, right?

      —————————————
      🙁 The real Anonymous 🙁

      • Anonymous

        Disney removes Bill Cosby’s statue from their theme park now.

        Apple, when are you going to remove Dre?

        • Paul Resnikoff
          Paul Resnikoff

          The sad part is that Dre has already made his admission, on the record. With Cosby, we didn’t have that until the recent unsealed deposition.

  26. Anonymous

    100. It won’t make artists more money. But it will help Apple sell more iPhones!

  27. Tim F.

    Most of these aren’t problems, they’re just sentences with numbers in front of them (70… 70 is hilarious). Many seem to be opinions and hopes that you think, if enumerated, will somehow be true (71-83, 85-91 ,97-98 , I’m sure several earlier ones as well).

  28. laddy

    spotify premium canceled, crash-laden app deleted.
    why is everyone so confused on how to actually set up and use apple music, it’s comparable to helping you granny’s & granddad’s how to get the set top box working. unreal. tie your own shoes folks

  29. Steveeck

    Paul: THIS IS FANTASTIC LIST! I’ve had most of these problems on the list. Including vanishing playlists, ratings and smart playlists criteria change or just erase. There is no method to the madness. THANK YOU! Too bad –since I enjoyed Apple Music until I had to shut it off.

  30. Steveeck

    Paul–THIS IS FANTASTIC LIST! I’ve had most of these problems on the list. Including vanishing playlists, ratings and smart playlists criteria change or just erase. There is no method to the madness. THANK YOU! Too bad –since I enjoyed Apple Music until I had to shut it off.

  31. superduper

    Obviously this list is exaggerated, obviously there are not 99 real ‘problems’ with Apple Music as a lot of these are fixable little qualms. Although having said that there still are a lot of problems in terms of usability and functionality that need to be sorted out with Apple Music.
    The thing that bothers me the most about fussing over the usability of Apple Music is that it glosses over the real problem: artist compensation and the diminishing value of music (i.e. points #76-91). Even though artists are getting paid, $0.002 is definitely not enough money. I feel as if when Taylor Swift put her new album back on Apple Music after their turnaround, nobody really cared about how little artists are making, and basically said ‘ehhh, good enough,’ even though it really isn’t. Funnily enough, when I tried searching something like ‘Apple Music’ or ‘Apple Music “royalties” or “royalty”‘ on Google all I got were articles about Taylor Swift and how she went back on to Apple Music because they were paying artists, but only TWICE did I ever see an article discussing the $0.002. The two one that I saw was this one Hypebot:
    http://www.hypebot.com/hypebot/2015/06/apple-music-will-not-pay-full-royalties-during-free-90-day-trial.html
    and this one on the Trichordist
    http://thetrichordist.com/2015/06/30/why-002-is-greater-than-001-and-why-90-days-is-better-than-forever/
    (which I actually found kind of odd that the Trichordist would actually advocate for Apple’s dismally low royalty rate, but whatever)
    Other than that I didn’t even see any articles at all (and I have been following it obsessively for the past month). I haven’t even found any articles PROMOTING it nor CRITICISING it – no discussion whatsoever – which I found quite strange.
    In my opinion, I think that the $0.002 royalty rate is disgustingly low, and it will barely make up for the lost royalties from iTunes downloads over the next few months and beyond. I feel as if it is barely better than nothing
    Even worse though is NOT the low royalties during the free trial, but AFTER the free trial. In fact, does anybody really know how much artists will REALLY be making in Apple music. As point #91 states it is very unclear whether or not the per stream rate will be high, which it probably won’t. If one looks online, they will see hardly any articles with any clear information on how much artists will get paid. If rates are low, which seems likely at this point, it will stuck in in a sort of digital purgatory forever because…
    …and this brings me to the biggest most bothersome issue for Apple Music which is this: lost digital download sales. As point #86 says Apple Music will “effectively decimate the digital download,” which if Apple Music is successful is probably true unfortunately. As points #87-88 say it will kill a solid revenue stream for artists, will make artists (especially smaller artists) broke, and will put several record labels out of business. This I think is a very true reality, and is one that needs to be stopped before its too late. Paul, you say that it is not Apple’s fault which is sort of true, but the thing about Apple Music in comparison to Spotify is that, unlike Spotify, Apple has made a sound business on selling music digitally for over 10 years and it still remains strong. When that foundation, which has been a solid foundation for the music industry breaks you are left with a very volatile and unstable music industry that will probably not survive for the next 5 or so years.
    A very popular argument is that it is the ‘bad deals’ that are made with the record labels that is the reason why artists don’t get paid. While I think this is at least partly true, I think that they are missing the real point: streaming simply does not make enough money and it will likely never make enough money to support a global music industry. And the reason why is even more simply that a stream is not worth as much as download. I am very worried for the future of music whether or not Apple Music is successful.

    • Anonymous

      “it [Apple Music] will kill a solid revenue stream for artists, will make artists (especially smaller artists) broke, and will put several record labels out of business. This I think is a very true reality, and is one that needs to be stopped before its too late”

      Yep — this is the truth, and it needs to be repeated again and again.

      —————————————
      🙁 The real Anonymous 🙁

      • hey

        “This I think is a very true reality, and is one that needs to be stopped before its too late”
        Artists and indie lablels already commited suicide once they got onboard Spotify anyway. So it’s way too late now. Apple just offers you a somewhat more peaceful death.

        • superduper

          I am a firm believer that the music industry can reverse course, but they would need to adopt a better model instantly.

          • Anonymous

            Except no one on the planet has been able to come up with this “better model”. We’ve been waiting for it for the last 10 years. Maybe there simply isn’t one

          • superduper

            It’s not as if there is no solution, its just that nobody really thinks about it because everybody is led to believe
            otherwise even though the solution is not that hard.
            In fact, I think there is a better model, I think it does exist, but it would require a massive shift in the way that we view streaming. Streaming should not be a replacement to album sales but rather a way to promote album sales, and that starts with limiting free streaming to say 5-10-15 listens, and then allowing the listener to buy it at a reasonable price if they want it (or don’t if they do not want it). This will solve nearly every problem that streaming has in terms of royalties, because the rates will be far more predictable and concentrated, whereas now it is assumed that the amount of listens is infinite. This only increases uncertainty and further accelerates the devaluation of music. It will also allow streaming to act as is truly meant to be: temporary listening for promotional purposes only, while at the same time providing a solid foundation of cash flow and a good amount of exposure. It is also good for the consumer too because the quality of the music that they will be getting will be predictable and in theory better than average. The reason why limited streaming for promotional purposes increases quality control is because it sets a higher standard due to its limitations. To elaborate, it encourages good art because you know that you only get 5-15 chances to secure a paying customer, thus making it more competitive but in a positive sense.
            Even though the transition to this model may be difficult for some, it will make the music industry far more successful in the long run.

          • superduper

            *everyone is led to believe that there is no other solution

  32. Nolan

    Ive been using Apple Music since it dropped. It took some getting used to at first, and yes it has minor first edition bugs, but Jesus Christ….99?? No. I think this opinion piece has 99 problems, but Apple ain’t one. < *BOOM* (ya like how I did that?) Anyway, in all honesty, Apple did not ask me for a credit card, and I do not have a card attached to my account in any way. I use iTunes cards. You can literally buy them at any convenience store checkout. Believe me I know. I have a twelve year old daughter. Believe it or not, even streaming at 256kbs I'm using less data than I do with Spotify. Speaking of Spotify, I have a Spotify Premium account. I use both apps…as well as Soundcloud. They each offer pros and cons. My point is, the only issues I've had with Apple Music, are the following: When shuffling your music, and you come to an artist or album that you like, there is no option to go to that artist. Either in your library, or to their page. The artists do have pages that you can follow. Not users, though. Another small issue I have is merely a buffering issue. Otherwise, I've not had an issue finding music from any of my favorite artists, and I've built up quite a collection thus far. It's aesthetically pleasing, and fairly simple to use if you're used to using ANY sort of music player/streaming service interface. I think your article is somewhat misleading, but that's just my opinion. You have to give something like this an opportunity to succeed. It's been three days. At least let me get my three month trial and I'll make my decision at the end of it. If it's worth it, hell I'll pay for my Spotify and AM. Big deal. It's $20 for both services. Is it worth $20 per month to have premium music at your fingertips 24/7/365? If music means as much to you as it does to me, then the answe is undoubtedly yes.

  33. DavidB

    On the question of royalties in the long term (after the free trial period), I don’t see why royalties from Apple Music should be any lower than for Spotify’s Premium tier, which pays out around 1 cent per play. Royalties *per play* may be lower if AM users use it more heavily, as they may is it is more attractive to use (which I think it is.) But what matters to artists and labels is surely the total revenue, not the revenue per play. And in that respect, the more successful AM is, the more paying users it will attract and retain. The Holy Grail would be to get people, in aggregate, paying more for recorded music than they did when they had to buy downloads or CDs. I don’t think that is feasible so long as Spotify and YouTube are offering a free alternative.

    • superduper

      I would think that total revenue matters more to labels and pay-per-stream matters more to artists.

  34. so

    The biggest one of all: “Apple Music inherits a lot of functionality and curation aspects from Beats Music, which failed to make an impact on the actual marketplace before being acquired by Apple.”

    Yes, Apple was terribly behind on streaming, but they still should’ve just taken their time and built something themselves. It would surely be far better than what we have now.

  35. Ih8Apple

    OK… This is BS!!!!!!! I have lost well over 500 songs thanks to this newest update. And I didn’t even sign up for apple music!?!?!?

  36. Anonymous

    My iphone 6 freeze every couple of songs played from my playlist wether on or offline. I Need to reload every time. No improvment after five days.

  37. VincenzoSZ

    I totally see your point Paul. There are a lot of issues here that relate to Apple and the music industry in general. It sounds like there needs to be a lot more regulation on the music industry for a variety of reasons, one being so that we don’t end up with Apple owning music. We need to protect the artists and the listeners.

  38. Sandy

    Regarding number 37 on the list. Not meaning to be pedantic but I will be anyways.

    The internet was in widespread commercial use before 1996 (remember all of the AOL disks?) and was invented a long time before that.

  39. Maurice Villarreal

    I just sign in to Apple Music on July 5, 2015 but the system doesn’t gave my the free trial. I called Apple support and explain the problem, they say that i already had the trial period? WHAT!!! in just 7 days? the all 3 months? After several mails going out and back Laura (the Apple Rep) says, sorry you are not eligible for the trial period? WHAT Again!!! they don’t say why, they just refuse to honor the offer. What can i do? Where can i complain? Who can i complain to? Apple MUST honor their offer.