iTunes Radio (three-up, iPhone 5)

The song-skipping feature that long stalled Apple’s iTunes Radio talks with record labels could get a boost when iTunes Radio, which was announced at June’s WWDC, launches this Fall as part of the iOS 7 refresh and iPhone 5S/5C launch.

Apple on its part hasn’t definitely confirmed whether the free ad-driven service will in fact impose a ceiling on the number of song skips akin to Pandora and other digital radio services.

For what it’s worth, iOS 7 Beta users currently can’t bypass the song-skipping limit. In my testing, for example, iTunes Radio wouldn’t allow me to skip more than six songs each hour per a specific station. But according to a new report, things could change come this Fall as Apple could enable unlimited song skipping for iTunes Match subscribers…

I found this bit in Mark Gurman’s report about AppleCare training ahead of iOS 7 launch:

Additionally, it seems that iTunes Match subscribers, in addition to receiving an ad-free experience, will be granted unlimited skipping abilities.

Internal training documents also indicate that iTunes Radio will feature more than “200 genre based stations” to choose from.

I’m an iTunes Match subscriber and unlimited song skipping isn’t live for me yet.

Apple’s iTunes Radio web page is mum on the matter apart from this passing song-skipping mention (emphasis mine):

Ask Siri to play any of your favorite genres or stations. Or pause, stop, or skip to the next song. You can even have Siri add songs to your Wish List for you to download later.

Costing $24.99 per annum, iTunes Match is a scan-and-match services that analyzes your iTunes library and lets you access iTunes Store-matched songs from any device – including those you’ve imported into iTunes.

So not only will iTunes Match subscribers get an ad-free iTunes Radio experience, but unlimited song skips as well – how cool is that?

FYI, there’s a workaround to the iTunes Radio song skipping limit: after you’ve skipped six songs on a specific radio station, simply start streaming a new song from another station and then return to the previous station – works like a charm.

  • pauleebe

    MAJOR WIN. Was waiting for this.

    • Well, keep waiting. I have iOS 7, iTunes 11.1 and a paid iTunes match account. NO unlimited skip. And the “workaround” cited by the author does not work with the final release.

      • Zack Gall

        Same goes for me, I was shocked when I could not skip anymore than 6 songs. I pay 25 bucks for this!!!

  • Franklin Richards

    this is awesome news… except I bet it’ll take over half a year before I get to enjoy this feature over in the UK. In more recent news, has anyone been having problems with accessing the itunes store?

    • Anthony Antunez

      Yeah! Thought it was just me. I’m the U.S. though but strange things have been happening with iTunes since yesterday to me. Last night I couldn’t download apps from the App Store, I had to use my computer and sync them manually. Today, the iTunes app just disappeared from my Apple TV. iTunes Match songs weren’t downloading a few minutes ago (now they are). I edited new albums I just added, then I synced with iTunes Match and all the information I had edited just went back to what it was before. Just crazy stuff happening today. Everything seems to be ok now except iTunes is still missing from my Apple TV.

  • Gucciipad

    I already deleted pandora

    • tkezell

      Pandora’s algorithm is different that Apple’s. I’ve found that there’s a good combo by having both. I didn’t ditch it yet because I paid for Pandora One. I’d like to know what you think about the comparison of the two services playlist choices though. iHeart Radio also has a great artist based station player

  • abdullah575

    Why Apple ???

  • Markus Hudobnik

    This is so great. All your music in the cloud + free unlimited skips on iTunes Radio = good use of $25 a year

  • disqus_hVdzXKCBQi

    Is the ad free feature enabled only on devices that have iTunes Match turned on or also on devices that are logged in with an iTunes Match subscribers Apple ID?

    I ask because I typically leave iTunes Match turned off on my iPhone.

    • Al

      Great question, I know what you mean… But why pay for iTunes Match and not use it fully.

      If that is indeed what your asking to pay for iTunes Match only to have the benefit of ad free and quite possibly unlimited skipping of songs with iTunes Radio.

      • disqus_hVdzXKCBQi

        Not quite, I use iTunes Match on my iMac, Apple TV and work PC. I simply choose to leave it turned off on my iPhone.

        Hopefully subscribers will get these benefits on all their devices even if iTunes Match is turned off on one particular device.

      • Al

        I have iTunes Match on my Mac Mini, Apple TV… iPhone and iPad.

        Why do you turn it off on the iPhone?

  • ✪ aidan harris ✪

    The real question is will iTunes Match users that live outside of the United States of Apple (sorry I mean America) actually be able to use iTunes Radio at all? I don’t mean to rant for the sake of ranting but nonetheless I shall since the state of the music industry in this modern era is appalling. For example Eminems new record Berzerk was released in many countries this week yet not the UK. I don’t blame Apple for this since it’s most likely the record labels fault. Either way this shouldn’t happen and as a result I’ve pre-ordered the track and (excuse my ignorance) obtained a copy from other illegitimate means (in short I pirated it). You may not think this has much to do with iTunes Radio but really it is the same thing (licensing deals and other boring legislation being put into place slowly and on a country-by-country basis rather than one deal for worldwide usage).

    • Al

      “United States of Apple”

      Good one…

    • Kenrick Fernandes

      i agree with you. I’m going to be so pissed if this doesn’t work outside the US of A. I live in India and most radio apps like spotify, pandora aren’t available in the Indian store. It is actually very sad as some of the apps i want to use aren’t available here. Luckily for me TuneIn has given a great experience in terms of songs. If Itunes radio doesn’t work in India i will be majorly pissed. Not like it is apple’s fault but ill still be pissed off with them.

  • Yujin

    Like the idea of iTunes Radio as an extra benefit for iTunes,but lately I am seeing my cover art being mixed up. For example when I sync to my computer which displays the right covert art, my iPhone will have a cover art for another artist. Only when I do a mass download from iTunes (thanks to iTunes Match) it puts the right art. But usually it hangs after a 100 or so songs, I have over 3000 in my library and it seems a little to slow even on a 50 MB download line.

    • ✪ aidan harris ✪

      If you’re on iOS 7 download the Music and Video reset profile. One place to get it is here:


      download it and email it to yourself and then open it on your iOS device. Then go to settings –> Music and reset your music library…

  • FOFF

    i am glad i dont need this..

  • Patrick

    hope this will be available in the UK soon, cant wait for it

  • Linton Findlay

    Itunes match is a good service as it is, apart from when it doesnt match random songs from a cd rip

  • chumawumba

    Now this is something which will make me take the $25 jump! Goodbye Pandora Downloader.

  • Falk M.

    I’m keeping my feet still, I live in Germany, we will only get half the deal at best LOL

  • RYNE

    Itunes match does not offer unlimited skips

  • Trayboon Martin

    I have match and it only allows me 6 skips per hour…such bs!

    • Erick Erick

      now that itunes radio have launched officially, is it still the same? 6 skips for everyone, including match subscribers?

      • Trayboon Martin

        Yes it looks that way. Also doesnt sound near as good as spotify. I think they are streaming at a lower bitrate or something.

  • Well, I’ve got iTunes 11.1, iOS 7 and paid iTunes Match account. Unfortunately, no unlimited song skipping. Truly a bummer.

  • TontoPollo

    iTunes radio doesn’t work…