Apple has renamed its flagship radio station, Beats 1 to Apple Music 1 as part of its rebranding. And to take on Spotify, the smartphone giant launched two new radio stations – Apple Music Hits and Apple Music Country. Collectively, the three stations are called Apple Music radio.
Oliver Schusser, VP, Apple Music and Beats, said for the past five years if ever there was a meaningful moment in music culture Beats 1 was there. It brought human curation to the forefront and drawing in listeners with exclusive shows from some of the most innovative, respected and beloved people in music. He said the radio now provides an unparalleled global platform for artists across all genres to talk about, create and share music with their fans. “We will continue to invest in live radio and create opportunities for listeners around the world to connect with the music they love.”
Apple Music Hits will feature shows and curated playlists which will cover the biggest tracks from the 1980s to the 2000s. Besides regular shows, it will showcase one-off exclusive programmes. The official statement highlighted that the shows would feature artists like Alanis Morissette, Backstreet Boys, Meghan Trainor and Shania Twain.
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Apple Music Country is entirely devoted to Country music and will feature a mix of regular presenters and exclusive shows. It will have a range of country artists like Carrie Underwood, Kelsea Ballerini and Jimmie Allen.
Sources said that through rebranding and new stations, Apple would take on Spotify, a streaming music platform. Spotify has made significant investments in its platform and podcasts. The platform recently acquired Joe Rogan’s podcast and another from the former First Lady Michelle Obama.
Apple and Spotify are noted rivals with their competition going back into years. According to CNBC, Spotify has been outspoken on Apple App’s Store rules, which require it to pay a 30% revenue cut earned through subscriptions that are made through the app on Apple devices. The online streaming platform has also filed a complaint with the European Commission’s antitrust regulators in March of 2019, arguing that Apple Music has an unfair advantage over rivals.