Apple Music puts a human face on the mess that music’s become

Jimmy Iovine talks up Apple Music at WWDC 2015.
Jimmy Iovine talks up Apple Music at WWDC 2015.
Photo: Apple

Apple’s big idea for transforming the way we experience music is bringing a personal touch — and a simple, unified platform — to the tangled technological mess that music’s become in 2015. Apple Music is classic Apple: putting a human face on technology that threatens to overwhelm us.

Tim Cook brought out high-profile artists, and Apple’s team of industry insiders, to show off what he called “the next chapter in music” today at the Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco.

“I know your are going to love it,” Cook said, introducing Apple Music. “It will change the way that you experience music forever.”

Here’s what Apple Music will bring to your ears.

How Jimmy Iovine got HBO Now on Apple TV and iOS

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HBO Now on the big screen. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac
Jimmy Iovine played a key role bring HBO Now to Apple. Photo: HBO

HBO finally unleashed its Netflix-killer today with the HBO Now app for iOS and Apple TV. The company is already having a hard time keeping up with demand on the streaming service, but according to a profile on HBO CEO Richard Plepler CEO, the original plan was to launch it at the end of 2016.

Today’s launch may not have happened it if weren’t for Apple executive Jimmy Iovine, who sparked the connection between HBO and Apple. After Fox CEO Rupert Murdoch made a hostile bid to takeover of Time Warner last year, Plepler says he knew he need to pivot the company. So he called up his old buddy Jimmy and asked if Apple would be interested in an HBO Now deal.

“I think that’s the shit,” Jimmy said.

Apple will kill free music with Beats revamp

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Apple has big ambitions for its new music streaming service.
Beats redesign is coming to WWDC 2015. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Apple will supposedly unveil a big redesign of Beats Music in June, but if you are hoping it will come with a free, ad-supported tier, you’re going to be out of luck.

Apple wants to help music labels kill free music streaming by inking deals that will give subscribers exclusive access to albums before they hit rival players like Spotify, Rdio and Pandora.

What’s inside Apple’s mystery tent?

Apple's tiny white tent nestles between buildings at San Francisco's Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. Photo: Jim Merithew/ Cult of Mac
Apple's tiny white tent nestles between buildings at San Francisco's Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

SAN FRANCISCO — Another Apple event, another mysterious building sprouting up seemingly overnight. They pop up to shield Apple’s prep work from prying eyes, but they also fuel the imaginations of anybody who’s interested in Cupertino’s next move.

The latest such structure — this time with solid white walls and a tented, tarp-like roof — isn’t nearly as elaborate as the gigantic building erected before last fall’s Apple Watch event, but the mysteries concealed could be gigantic.

The big reveal comes at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts next Monday, when we will almost assuredly learn more about the Apple Watch (among other things). Until then, all we can do is wait and wonder: What could be hidden inside Apple’s mystery tent?