Amazon Echo devices will include Apple Music beginning the week of December 17th. Users will be able to ask Alexa to play 50 million songs from Apple Music, including curated playlists, music from around the world, and artist interviews, all ad-free.
Many people already listen to music through their Echo devices using platforms such as Spotify, Pandora, and iHeartRadio. Alexa makes listening to music incredibly convenient, as users can simply tell their device to play a certain song or playlist. Through Alexa Routines, users can even ask Alexa to wake them up with a particular genre of music (and apparently country music is the most requested genre to wake up, according to Amazon). Tens of millions of hours of radio and music alarms have been played since the music feature began less than a year ago. Now, Apple Music users can get in on the fun.
“Music is one of the most popular features on Alexa—since we launched Alexa four years ago, customers are listening to more music in their homes than ever before,”
explains Dave Limp, Senior Vice President of Amazon Devices. To listen to Apple Music, users will have to enable the Apple Music skill through their Alexa app and link their account.
Although Apple has its own smart home and speaker, the Apple HomeKit and HomePod, respectively, their integration with the Amazon Echo will allow them to better compete with Spotify. While Apple had 50 million subscribers as of May, Spotify recently announced that they have 87 million subscribers. “One of the things we’ve always believed with music — and this goes back to the iTunes days — is to try to make the music services as widely available as possible,” says Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services. Inclusion on the Amazon Echo will mean access to millions of Echo users, a definite advantage for Apple.