Apple today released iOS 8.4, the fourth major update to iOS 8. First seeded to developers in April, iOS 8.4 includes a newly revamped Music app and Apple’s long-awaited on-demand streaming music service, Apple Music.
iOS 8.4 is available immediately as an over-the-air download, and the new Apple Music service is located within the Music app. Apple Music will be available immediately after iOS 8.4 is installed, while the Beats 1 radio service will kick off at 9:00 a.m. Pacific Time.
Introduced at the recent Worldwide Developers Conference, Apple Music is an on-demand streaming music service that’s much like Apple’s former Beats Music service. It allows users to listen to an unlimited amount of music for $9.99 per month or $14.99 for a family plan that supports up to 6 listeners.
Apple Music is accompanied by the Beats 1 radio station, which features 24-hour live human-curated music at no cost, and Apple Music Connect, a social networking platform that allows artists to interact with fans and share content like photos and videos. Apple Music includes millions of songs from iTunes and is launching simultaneously in more than 100 countries.
Along with Apple Music, today’s iOS 8.4 update includes a complete overhaul of the built-in Music app. It incorporates Apple Music and it features a new design that shows pictures of artists in the Artists view and a new MiniPlayer with a revamped “Now Playing” look. There are personalized playlists, global search capabilities that make it easier to search within the Music app, and a streamlined design for the radio feature to bolster music discovery.
Other minor changes in iOS 8.4 include the relocation of audiobooks from the Music app to the iBooks app, consolidating all books, print, and audio into one convenient spot, and a new Audiobooks for CarPlay app, giving drivers a standalone app dedicated to playing their audiobooks.