Check your iPhones and iPads, Apple fans, because as expected, iOS 8.4 has arrived — and it’s a major update. Why? Because it includes the brand-new Apple Music streaming service, that was announced during Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference earlier this month, among other things.
The unlimited, on-demand music service costs $10 per month, or $15 if you’d like to give up to six family members the chance to listen in. It comes with the Beats 1 radio station, which has actual people controlling the music — not some smart algorithm — and is available at no cost at all.
Join the Apple Music band, and you’ll receive enhanced music recommendations, a curated list of newly added music, and the chance to see videos, photos, and posts shared by artists you follow. All this is found inside a newly redesigned Music app, which now features a Miniplayer, personalized playlists, an improved search system, and lists showing recently added music.
Outside of Apple Music, the iBooks app has also been treated to some improvements in iOS 8.4. The major new addition here is audiobook support, a feature shifted from the Music app. Audiobooks can be downloaded and played directly in the app, which is complete with a now-playing feature. Any iBooks that have been created using Made for iBooks now work in the iPhone, whereas before they were restricted to the iPad, plus there are several UI and feature tweaks to improve general use.
Regarding the usual bug fixes, Apple says it has squashed a problem with GPS accessories not sharing location data, a problem where deleted Apple Watch apps may just reinstall themselves, and stopped the pesky phone-crashing message bug in its tracks.
The iOS 8.4 update is around 220MB in size, and can be downloaded over-the-air, or by syncing your Apple device with iTunes on your computer. Apple Music has already launched, and the Beats 1 radio station is broadcasting now, but the software update will be sent out in stages, and may not be available to all owners straight away.
Your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch will notify you when it’s ready to install, or you can check if it has arrived by going to Settings/General/Software Update, if you just can’t wait.