After first launching the new Apple Music service on iOS devices (see “Apple Releases iOS 8.4 with Apple Music,” 30 June 2015), Apple released iTunes 12.2 with access to the Apple Music streaming music subscription service and the free Beats 1 radio service. The Apple Music service costs $9.99 a month (with a family subscription for up to six users priced at $14.99), but Apple is offering a free trial for the first three months.
Beyond the new iTunes icon, the app’s Music section gets a makeover with Apple Music’s For You, New, and Connect views joining My Music, Playlists, iTunes Store, and a revamped Radio at the top. If you signed up for the three-month Apple Music trial via iOS and are signed into iTunes using the same credentials, you can start accessing Apple Music and Beats 1 immediately. If you haven’t yet signed up for the trial, you can do so in iTunes in the For You tab. (If you choose not to sign up, you can still listen to the Beats 1 radio service, but you won’t be able to access any of the streaming music titles listed in the New tab.)
The For You view is where you’ll find recommended new music based on your tastes; the New view is Apple’s showcase of new releases; the Radio view is the home of the new Beats 1 radio station, as well as your iTunes Radio stations; and the Connect view is Apple’s new social platform for following your favorite artists. You’ll still be able to find music stored in your Mac’s iTunes library in the My Music and Playlist views.
To find streamable tunes from Apple Music, go to the Search field in the top right and select Apple Music (rather than the locally searched My Library), enter your search, and make a selection from the returned results to start streaming music. Note that the iTunes Store view shows only purchasable music from the iTunes Store, and not streaming options from Apple Music; any titles selected from the iTunes Store view will play just a preview. (Free, 222 MB via direct download or via Software Update, 10.7.5+)
It's a bummer that this version no longer lets you create or edit your own radio stations.
Really one of the worst "upgrades" in the company's history: Radio stations gone, playlists retrievable only via a ridiculously circuitous route.
I'm hoping there's a v. 12.3 soon.
There's also an annoying bug in the minimised collapsed window. The title scrolls up so that it is not readable. I have downgraded to 12.1.2. Finder copy does not work but Carbon Copy Cloner does the job, assuming you have a backup of course. Then copy the iTunes Media Folder over from the backup, Finder does work for this.
Apple's iTunes is the most tangled, Byzantine piece of software I've ever used. It's a jack of all trades that does nothing well. Should have broken into separate applications years ago.