How Apple Music Works

What is Apple Music

First let's try to understand exactly what Apple Music is. In case you didn't already know, this is the home music streaming service Apple through which it is possible to access a catalog consisting of millions of albums, playlists and songs, both old and new, to be listened to via the Internet but also offline if necessary. Standard format playback takes place a 256 kbps in Advanced Audio Coding (AAC), but there is also support forlossless audio (lossless, in ALAC format with resolutions ranging from 16bit / 44,1kHz CD quality up to 24bit / 192kHz) and spatial audio, which creates an effect of “spatiality” on the tracks remastered in this format and, therefore, allows you to hear the sounds coming from multiple directions. As for lossless tracks, listening is available on headphones, receivers or amplified speakers connected by cable, built-in speakers and, to listen to tracks at sample rates above 48 kHz, an external digital-to-analog converter is required (more information here). To take advantage of the spatial audio, on the other hand, headphones and earphones of all kinds are enough, or the speakers integrated into the most recent Apple products (more information here).

As can be easily deduced from the name itself and taking into account the fact that it is a product of the "bitten apple", it integrates flawlessly with other services and devices of the same company but not only. Apple Music is in fact usable on Mac, iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and even Apple TV but also on Windows computers and Android smartphones and tablets.

How Apple Music Works

In the case of the Mac it all goes away iTunes, which is pre-installed on Apple branded computers, while as regards the mobile devices of the Cupertino company and the Apple TV just use theMusic app, which is available “as standard”. On Windows, on the other hand, the management is always done through iTunes but since it is not the default player of the Microsoft operating system, it is first necessary to download and install it, as I also explained to you in my tutorial dedicated to the subject. And on Android devices? You need to download the appropriate app called Apple Music from the Google Play Store.

In addition to the devices already mentioned, Apple Music is then usable on Apple Watch (with paired iPhone) by car via C and through the loudspeakers of the range Sonos.

To use the service you must also have a Apple ID and you must be logged in to the Music app, iTunes or Apple Music app on Android with the latter. If you don't already have an Apple ID, you can create it "on the fly" by following the instructions I gave you in my dedicated article.


Let's be clear about one thing right away: Apple Music is not a freely usable service. To exploit it, in fact, it is necessary to subscribe a special one monthly subscription which, as easily imaginable, is paid. Unfortunately, unlike what is offered by some competitors, first of all Spotify (for more info about it, you can refer to my tutorial dedicated to the question), Apple therefore does not offer any solution to use its service for free (with any limitations). of music streaming.

The only things that can be done by accessing the Music app, iTunes and the Apple Music app on Android with only the Apple ID, without subscribing to anything, are the use of the social channel Connect (a sort of social networking service through which to follow the updates of your favorite music artists) and listening to Beats 1 (the radio edited directly by a team of Apple specialists). Stop.

Returning to the subject of subscriptions, currently the available subscriptions are the following:

  • Individual - It costs 9,99 euros / month and is intended for use by a single user. Alternatively, an annual variant is available which costs 99 euros.
  • Family - It costs 14,99 euros / month and is intended for use by up to 6 people belonging to the same family.
  • Students - It costs 4,99 euros / month, is for single users and is intended for use by university students.

How Apple Music Works

Alternatively, I point out that the subscription is available Apple one which for 14,95 euros / month offers access to Apple Music + 50GB of iCloud Drive space, Apple TV + and the games of Apple Arcade (the Family version costs 19,95 euros / month and includes 200GB of iCloud Drive space). To activate Apple One just go to the menu Settings> [your name]> Subscriptions> Apple One on iOS or iPadOS.

However, it should be borne in mind that all new users can take advantage of a free trial period of Apple Music equal to 3 months at the end of which there is no obligation to renew for a fee. To take advantage of it, just access the service and accept the start of the test which is automatically proposed. For more information on this as well as on the paid plans, you can refer to the information web page attached to the Apple website.

How Apple Music works on computer

Now that you finally have clearer ideas about the nature of the service in question, I would therefore say that you are finally ready to get to the heart of the matter. So, let's first try to understand how Apple Music works on computer. As anticipated a few lines above, to be able to use it from your Mac or from your Windows PC you need iTunes.

Once the famous multimedia player has started, select the item Music from the menu at the top left and you will immediately find yourself in front of the screen through which you are asked if you want to activate the free trial period of the service and / or which subscription to subscribe.

Once you have made your choice and after logging in to your Apple account, you will immediately be shown a new screen through which you can indicate your musical tastes in terms of genres and artists so as to better customize the use. of the service. To express what your preferences are, just click on the elements you prefer in a medium way and double-click on those you absolutely cannot give up. At the end of the procedure, presses on end.

On the next screen you will then be asked if you want to merge your library with the iCloud one so as to upload the songs you already have online from your computer (those you have added to the iTunes musical library) and synchronize them on all devices connected to the same Apple ID. . A maximum limit of 100.000 songs is set but their listening will always be at the highest quality, regardless of that of the file originally allocated on iTunes. Feel free to choose, based on your preferences and needs.

Then you can finally start using Apple Music as you see fit. To do this, you must first access the reference section that you can select by clicking on the tabs at the top of the iTunes window and which are indicated and explained below.

  • For you - It is practically the personal area of ​​each subscriber to the service, it contains advice sources directly from Apple on listening to this or that other song based on what has already been played. It therefore includes tailor-made albums and playlists as well as potentially interesting new releases.
  • Discover - By accessing it you can discover all the new music of the moment, playlists, charts, music videos and documentaries always with a musical background and you can also search by genre.
  • Radio - This is the section dedicated to the personalized radio stations of the service. There is a bit of everything and for all tastes: rap, pop, jazz. R&B and so on.
  • library - It is the area through which you can manage your music library and your playlists, both as regards personal content and those obtained through Apple Music.

How Apple Music Works

In addition to accessing the various sections of Apple Music mentioned above, you can find singles, albums, playlists and artists in a more direct way, using the appropriate search field that you find in the upper right part of the iTunes window, by typing in the words reference key and then selecting the relevant result from those proposed to you.

As for listening to this or that other content, just press the button Play that you find in correspondence of the covers or titles and that's it. By clicking on the cover of an album or a playlist you can then access the advanced controls that allow you to start shuffle playback (the button with the double arrow), add single songs, entire albums or playlists to the library (the + Add or that one "+") and download content to listen to offline (the button with the cloud and arrow). On the other hand, by always right clicking on the cover or on the name of the reference content, you can access the context menu through which to remove the downloads, play the chosen one as next, later etc.

How Apple Music Works

The only case in which no command for playback and management is available are radios. You can only start it by clicking on the button Play and you can stop it by pressing on Stop. That's all.

To manage playback and volume, you must instead refer to the commands placed at the top of the iTunes window. There are buttons to go back and forth between songs, those to insert the loop, the volume adjustment bar and the timeline of the song, the button to activate shuffle play and the button to view the queue, history and lyrics.

How Apple Music works on smartphones and tablets

Interested in understanding how Apple Music works on smartphones and tablets? For better or worse, the mechanism is the same as the computer version, the one accessible through iTunes. To use it, what you need to do is first launch the Music app on your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch or the Apple Music app on Android.

In the screen that will subsequently be shown you can choose whether to activate the free trial period of the service and / or which subscription to subscribe. Then log in to your Apple account and then you can customize the operation of Apple Music by indicating what your musical tastes are. To express your preferences, just tap on the elements you prefer in a medium way and double tap on those you absolutely cannot give up. At the end of the procedure, tap on end.

Once this is done, you can finally start using Apple Music as you see fit. Similarly to what happens on the desktop, the app for smartphones and tablets also presents a subdivision into sections that you can access after selecting the relative low voices. The taxable sections are the same as for the desktop variant of the service, therefore: For you, Discover, Radio e library. In addition you will find the section Search which allows you to search among the many available contents and which must be used instead of the search field attached to iTunes.

How Apple Music Works

As for the management of the reproduction of albums, playlists and single songs, you can do everything using the special mini-player located at the bottom of the app screen. You can pause or resume playback and skip straight to the next song. By enlarging the player (just press on it) you can also adjust the volume, add songs to the library and download them locally, start playing them on Apple TV and others must be connected to the same network and access the menu with further options to express preferences, remove a given item from library etc.

How Apple Music Works

As for the management of the various contents, tapping on the cover of an album or a playlist or on the name of a song and then on the button Play you can start playback and access the advanced commands for random playback (by pressing the button with the two arrows), to add everything to the library (using the button + Add or that one "+") and to add single songs to playlists, share albums and add likes and dislikes (by tapping on the button (...) and subsequent choice of option). To download locally, just tap on the button with the speech bubble.

Only in the specific case of radios are there no advanced commands for managing playback. The only thing you can do is start listening by tapping on the relevant cover image and then stop it by pressing on Stop.

Subscription management

At the beginning of the guide I told you that new Apple Music subscribers can try the service for free for 3 months and with no obligation to renew. To avoid the automatic renewal of the subscription or in any case in the event that you have subscribed to the service and you have changed your mind or wanted to change it, you can follow the instructions below to avoid money being stolen from you.

To manage the subscription through iTunes, start the media player on your computer, click on the item Account attached to the menu bar and then on that View my account ... on the menu if you press.

Then type the password for your Apple ID and then locate the section Settings, click on the link Manage that you find next to the wording Subscriptions, select the voice Modification at Apple Music and then click on the button Cancel subscription which is below. To conclude, press on end. For more details you can refer to my dedicated guide.

How Apple Music Works

To change the type of subscription made, you must instead tap on the subscription of your interest from those available in the section options, type in your Apple ID password and confirm your choice.

If, on the other hand, you want to manage the subscription to Apple Music through the Music app on iOS or through the ad hoc one for Android, you must access the application, go to the section For you, plug on tua photo in stop to outside and by the pulse See account down.

Then press on View Apple ID and enter the password for your account or unlock the login via Touch ID or Face ID (if supported). In the new screen that appears, step on Subscriptions, Then Apple Music subscription e pigia his Cancel subscription. Always if you feel you need more info, you can read my guide on the subject that I reported to you just now.

How Apple Music Works

If, on the other hand, you do not want to cancel the subscription to Apple Music but simply want to change the type of subscription made, press the one to be activated as an alternative and confirm the choice made. Very easy, isn't it?

How Apple Music Works

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