Why Apple’s Beats 1 Radio Has Me Completely Addicted


Apple Music is similar to already existing services such as Spotify, Pandora, Hungama, Rdio, Gaana and Saavn in many ways, but there is one thing that really sets it apart. It’s Apple’s live radio channel, Beats 1, 24/7. Apple leverages the value of the Beats brand and its appeal to popular artists such as Dr. Dre , Eminem, Jimmy Iovine and Elton John. The result is the best radio station I’ve listened to.

The programming on Beats 1 is so good that I’m totally addicted to it now. Apple has hired three professional Disk Jockeys (DJs) – Zane Lowe, Ebro Darden and Julie Adenuga playing from Los Angeles, New York and London respectively. The rest of the slots are filled with exclusive hosts including musicians such as A-Trak, Disclosure and Ellie Goulding, and with recurring shows like Jaden Smith’s MSFTS Frequency and Pharell Williams’ OTHERtone (incidentally, the latest single from Pharell, Freedom, premiered on Apple Music). If you want to know which artist is live at what time, you can visit the official Tumblr page for more information.

(Also see: How to request a song on Beats 1 Radio)

The 24/7 format of Beats 1 allows for great variety to be incorporated. Have you ever played GTA? If so, you know that there are several radio stations, each offering a different genre of music; Basically, Beats 1 consolidates all GTA radio stations into one. The only difference is that with Beats 1 you don’t get satirical radio commentary.

On the other hand, the Beats 1 DJs are wonderfully fresh and have impromptu conversations that elevate the listening experience to a whole new level. I missed Zane Lowe’s interview with Eminem (available on YouTube as an audio-only stream, by the way), but I did manage to catch Jaden Smith’s very first MSFTS Frequency broadcast. The young star invited her superstar dad Will Smith on the show and their chilled-out, chilled-out conversation had me splitting. At one point, Will Smith trolled his son on the show by answering an emphatic “no” to one of his son’s elaborate questions. It was hilarious. What’s better is that Will Smith has also announced that he is collaborating with Drake on a project thus providing fodder for any entertainment mag looking for an interesting scoop.

(Also see: Apple Music Beats 1 Radio: 10 things to know)

I have some issues with Apple Radio though. Despite having a platform that could potentially include a wide variety of genres, it felt like Apple was only playing songs in the EDM and Pop genre, at least for the first two days. That has changed for now, so let’s see how it goes. Also, Beats 1 needs a very stable internet connection to work smoothly. Many users (including me) have experienced connection dropouts on several occasions.

Despite these teething issues, I have high hopes for Beats 1 and Apple Music. Taylor Swift may have written a letter expressing her displeasure with Apple’s policy of offering 3 months free membership without paying artists during that time, but the fact is that Apple immediately withdrew that policy and the Swift’s latest album, 1989, is now available to listeners first on Apple Music. Maybe she could end up on Beats 1 soon.

(Also see: How to cancel Apple Music subscription auto-renewal)

This shows that Apple is committed to serving both listeners and artists with quality music. I believe Beats 1 is the future of radio and Apple has once again revolutionized the music industry with a small tweak in music streaming. That said, there’s still a long way to go for a polished experience. I’m very hopeful because if there’s one thing Apple can do really well, it’s refine an experience.

Tech

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