Beats Music launches in the U.S, gets cozy with AT&T, but will it be getting your money?

Another contender today steps into the music streaming ring, with the official launch of the brand new Beats Music service. Or at least, the official launch in the U.S. anyway. AT&T customers stand to get the best deal from Beats Music, with the regular $9.99 a month subscription replaced with a more enticing offering for them:

Exclusively with AT&T, you can get the Beats Music Family Plan with 5 accounts across 10 devices for $14.99/month. So everyone in your family can listen to what’s right for them. Exclusive 90 day free offer for AT&T wireless customers.

So, if you're on AT&T, particularly if you have music hungry kids, then Beats Music might already strike you as a pretty compelling option. But what makes it different to the rest? Well for starters it's got some pretty hefty weight behind it in the form of Jimmy Iovine and Trent Reznor, and they're claiming to have built something more than just a 'search and play' system:

We wanted to build a service that was more than a server, one that was truly of service to the listener. We wanted to combine the trust that comes from excellent hand-picked music with the personalization that knows you’re an individual and that a handful of stations can’t satisfy all listeners.

Curated playlists, music tailored to your mood of the time, what you're doing, the "right song for the right moment." Sounds interesting enough, but only time will tell if it's any good. So, if you're based in the U.S, snag the iOS app – thankfully, fully iOS 7 ready – at the App Store link below, and get started. Non-AT&T customers get a free 7-day trial to check it out, and signing up takes only a moment with your Twitter or Facebook logins, or sign-up the old fashioned way with your email address.

If you decide to take Beats Music out for a test listen, let me know what you think of it. I'm curious, but being in the UK curious is all I can be for now!

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Richard Devine

Senior Editor at iMore, part time racing driver, full time British guy

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Reader comments

Beats Music launches in the U.S, gets cozy with AT&T, but will it be getting your money?


Why would someone pay $10 a month to listen to music, which is free to listen to? If you subscribe to iTunes Match, which is $25 per year, the that radio service from Apple is included with Match. And if you don't even do that, you can download Radium, which is free, and listen to internet radio, which is... FREE. If you pay for Beats, you. Are. A. SUCKER.

Considering the many millions of people worldwide who already pay to subscribe to Spotify, Deezer, Xbox Music, Google Play All Access and many others, I'm sure there's a big enough market for Beats Music.

What you're describing is your own tastes. I, for example, couldn't just live with listening to the Radio or to something like iTunes Radio where I don't have full control over the music coming my way. $9.99 a month is like the price of buying one album, with tens of thousands actually at my disposal.

Describing anyone who is happy to pay a small amount for a lot of music as a sucker isn't right.

Having control over music? I think people get sucked into the hype of these services. Do people listen to music that much where they have to have control over the music? Don't people work anymore, have jobs, go out, so something else besides listen to music? I would be willing to bet all the gold in Fort Knox that less 1% of people listen to music that much. The rest of them have jobs.

I couldn't disagree with you more. I subscribe to Rdio for $18 a month for the family plan. I work from home and I listen to music while I do so. All day long. I listen to music while I work out, and I want a specific playlist for that. I can also save music for offline listening, as much as I want as often as I want. Not something iTunes Radio comes close to letting me do. Just because you don't find a need for a service does not mean that others have no need either. You may enjoy subscribing to deer hunting magazines, I don't. Same concept here.

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Since when did listening to music become strictly a form of entertainment for the unemployed? :-D

Did say "strictly"? Sorry, I just don't see the benefits of paying money to listen to music via a subscription service just so I can have an unlimited number of skips. Has everyone forgotten the fact that on the iPhone, it can do this? And that is free, too.

I have a job and I listen to music all day in my car, house, work, the gym everywhere. I have Pandora, iTunes radio and siriusXM. iTunes radio does not have a big enough library. Within an hour I'm hearing the same songs again. Pandora on has 30 hours a month for free. SiriusXM wants me to pay 3.99 month for a service that I am a lifetime subscriber to. I have six iphones and three ipads on my account. For 14.99 a month if the library is good and I have offline service I bet you would loose the gold.

Some of us live in big cities and have to commute to work. Everyday. And if that commute is 1hour underground, you're damn right I'm gonna pay to have control over my music.

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Totally agree. And, even if you live in a big city, free FM radio is nothing to brag about. I live near Las Vegas and 90% of what's on the radio is crap. Either you get to listen to the same 12 songs all day long or you listen to more ads than music. I'll gladly pay $15 a month for my wife kids and I to have access to great music content. Artists get paid for their work and my kids don't have the temptation to pirate music they want to listen to.

I pay for xm radio even though I could get regular radio for free. I love it and can never go back to regular radio. I also pay an additional $4 to stream the app from my phone. To me money well spent. I am more of a talk radio (mlb) person so music not as important.

XM radio is different, though. You can't "control" the music like the other people here are talking about. And yes, I pay for XM because you can't get Patriot Radio anywhere else.

You have to unemployed to listen to music? Haha you do realize that most people need to commute to work. My commute is 1hr each way. On top of that I listen to music on the weekends, doing yard/house work, traveling, partying etc

"yes, I pay for XM because you can't get Patriot Radio anywhere else"
Ah now that makes sense in order to listen to music you need be a laid off government worker on unemployment using hard working american's tax dollars, if you are an illegal immigrant you defiantly stream music 24 hours a day

"I think people get sucked into the hype of these services" yeah, you get music on demand for 120 a year. How much money you waste on what you consider important? "Do people listen to music that much..." That much? Is a little vague there, but yes, they do. "Don't people work anymore...?" Making assumption that a streaming subscription means you do nothing else but listen to yeah, music at work, at the gym and the park at the anywhere lol. "I would be willing to bet all the gold in Fort Knox ...the rest of them have jobs" If only it was yours to bet, that's an easy bet to make I suppose. And what is this thing about jobs? What kind of job do you have? You think that people that have jobs don't enjoy music? Maybe precisely because they have jobs they pay a streaming service. There is no hype. Times change. You seem to be resisting change. Your days of cassettes and 8 tracks and cd's are over. It's the future, stop making arguments your parents once made. Don't generalize either. It makes you seem like you're out of touch and that cranky old man that always thinks they know better than anyone else. It's the digital age, embrace it. The world you use to know, no longer exists. Catch up or you'll simply fall behind into irrelevance making silly posts about people not having jobs.

Why would I want someone else controlling what I listen to? Subscription services are nice, but they only offer a small fraction of all the music that has ever been released on CD. I subscribe to Rhapsody as I have found that they have more of the music I am looking for. It's also an excellent way to discover new artists.

Then it's obviously not for you, but I can assure you I'm far from a sucker. I find value in my music subscriptions and that isn't about you, it's about me...

Aren't we getting to the point where there's just way too much choice in this area? I mean, there's no way all these services can all survive.

Beats Music trying to take a piece of the cake, eh? Can't really comment on the app, as expected not available in my country.

Just downloaded the app. It's designed well and all but after the 7 day trial I'll probably uninstall.

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Dont get it--why are we paying for streaming music,,makes no IHeart--free,,,Pandora-Basically Free,,and Shoutcast aka Winamp--Freeeeeee,,,Mobile and Web,,,,so what is this going to do deff,,get up and dance on a pole for me..

On demand. Want to play a specific album or one particular song? Can't do that on free services. Well okay, you can always pirate or fire up Youtube but not everyone wants to resort to that.

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Not bad so far. Not sure I'll be switching yet but one thing it does much better than Spotify is offline music. Don't have to create playlists and then choose to sync offline. Can just "+" it and choose to download it for offline use. That will also automatically add it to your library. Still checking it out but so far the app seems pretty nice.

The web side of it I haven't messed with much. However, it definitely doesn't seem as well "baked" as the iOS app yet. I don't even see where to access my library on it. Playlists are there but don't see the Library.

I think subscription services are a sham. I think people should go out and support their favorite Arita by Downloading or buying their records.

I've been a Rhapsody subscriber for almost eight years - tried all of the competing services (Spotify, Pandora, Slacker, Google Play Music, iTunes Radio, etc). None have been able to get me to change services. However, as an AT&T subscriber, the $15 for 5 people and use 10 devices is tempting. I like the concept of Beats music, but time will tell. I hate to lose my playlists on Rhapsody. Has anyone heard of plans for a Beats iPad app? The 3 months free will give me time to decide.

I'm an AT&T customer so I am going to check this out for 90 days. I do not need the family plan, though (it's just me in my household).

I just wish one of these services would try to be more competitive with their pricing. They are all $9.99 a month. I used to subscribe to Spotify but I didn't think it ended up being worth it for me based on the amount of time I actually used it on my iPhone. Now if it was maybe $4.99 - $7.99 it might make it more appealing to me. Maybe they could offer a discount for paying for, say, a year in advance.
I mean for $7.99 I get Netflix on as many devices as I want, although probably on 1 or 2 streams at at time, which is fine with me.

are you sure your netflix has unlimited device streaming? check your settings and it will say how many devices you can playback on at the same time.

I think they only limit simultaneous streams. I have it set up on 2 Rokus, an Apple TV, Playstation 3, iPhone & iPad.

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As long as they sell their overpriced and bad sounding headphones to idiots, there will be people who subscribe to this.

Wow that's pretty harsh. I think all of us have probably spent money on something that wasn't great value. We are not all idiots.

I do agree that other brands of headphones are a much better value than Beats, and I would not nor have I ever purchased Beats headphones currently, but I don't see how that factors in to this music service. I think the competition is a good thing. If they offer a better service (and that can be different for each individual) than Spotify/Rdio/Google for the price I'll gladly use them regardless of their headphones.

I'm all for more choice. I usually set myself a 'window of approval' to decide if I like something or not. I downloaded the app first thing this morning and I've used it in total for around an hour. It's a great concept and I applaud those behind it, ultimately it won't replace what I already have i.e. Spotify, Pandora

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I'm in the middle of my trial now and I've already heard a better selection of music than iTunes Radio, Spotify, Rdio and Pandora combined.
As an AT&T customer with a family plan, yeah, I'll probably be tacking this on to my plan and cancelling every other music subscription I have.

nobody is getting my money. i signed up and got a username thinking it would be free. It's not so i won't use it. I'm not paying for any of these streaming service.

So far it's not enough to move me from Spotify. I don't understand the hate though. Free services don't offer the same flexibility these paid ones do. The ability to search for a specific album or song is ideal for me. As well as adding these songs to my own custom playlist. As the music selections grow they become even better. And $10 a month is cheaper than purchasing albums and songs all month.

I'm a current subscriber to spotify and I do like the multiple users concept for 14.99. Since I'm an Att customer I get a 90 day free trial so it's worth a shot. If not I'll stick stick with spotify.

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I used to use Spotify. I do use Pandora, and I currently pay the $3.99/month to get no ads. Spotify, for a family of 4 users is too expensive. There are services with better family plan settings. I don't have a lot of experience with Beats Music yet, but I will use the 90 days to become more familiar. $15 for the whole family sounds good. Honestly, since it's on my cell phone bill, I probably won't remember to cancel it.

I'm enjoying iTunes Radio. So no interest in this service. But great review about the service!

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The app doesn't work at all. It worked for a little while this morning. Now every time I open it, it kicks out a connection problem error message.

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It's a slow app, doesn't even runs music. I got it when I saw a post on Twitter. But it hasn't work. Want good apps for music? Here:

Pandora, Rdio, Jango & iTunes Music.

Better, they are all free to listen.

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