Beats 1, Apple’s non-stop Internet radio station hosted by celebrity DJs, has made its first appearance in latest betas of iOS 8.4 and iOS 9 which are available to developers.
The Beats 1 interface appears unfinished with many features not active yet or performing erratically. Still, I was able to use the Music app on my iPad running iOS 9 Developer Preview to access a new Radio tab and get to Beats 1. I also browsed a list of stations and even streamed select ones and heard the promotional Beats 1 broadcast.
Here are my screenshots.
As you can see top of post and below, there’s a new Radio tab in the Music app on iOS 8.4 beta 4 and iOS 9 Developer Preview. In addition to a list of stations and genres, the Beats 1 promotional thumbnail at the top can be tapped, which yields a “coming soon” message and initiatives a pre-recorded promotional broadcast.
I must admit the pre-roll promo with celebrity DJs Zane Lowe in Los Angeles, Ebro Darden in New York and Julie Adenuga in London sounds very powerful. It’s everything you love about radio and I predict it’s going to become a smash hit with music lovers.
Tapping the magnifying glass in the upper right corner gives you the choice of searching across your own music library or radio stations (they even stream the BBC’s World Service). I was able to search for a radio station but actual streams weren’t live at post time.
On the other hand, I was able to listen to built-in radio stations divided into genres such as Alternative, Classical, Country, Dance, Electronic, Hip-Hop, Jazz, Kids & Family, Latin, Pop, R&B/Soul, Reggae, Rock and more.
Each genre section offers playlists so, for example, you can enjoy Electronic Chill or Underground Electronic playlists, or listen to some Pure Pop or iTunes Weekly Top 50 under the Pop section and more.
Just tap a station and it begins playing immediately.
Tapping an icon in the lower right corner of the screen brought up a contextual menu offering to start a new station from the currently playing song, show the track in the iTunes Store or make it available for offline playback, which didn’t work yet.
Beats 1 will go live in a hundred countries as part of the June 30 Apple Music rollout. Apple Music will cost $9.99 per month after a free three-month trial (€9.99 per month in Europe), or $14.99 per month for a family account.
The service will be available on the iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Apple Watch, Mac and PC starting June 30 in over a hundred countries. Apple Music will expand to the Apple TV set-top box and Android phones this fall.