WTF is Apple Music Classical?

Jam out to the classics!

Who says classical music and streaming services don't mix? Sure, you might think of Spotify as the soundtrack to your teenage angst, but there are a few brands out here to prove that Brahms and Beethoven can sound just as good on your phone as they do on your dad's dusty old gramophone. Next up to take a stab at the concept, Apple is getting in on the game with its new fancy-sounding service, Apple Music Classical. Who knows, maybe someday we'll all be jamming out to Ravi Shankar on our holographic headsets while sipping chai lattes. Anything is possible!

Why do we need it?

Classical music has developed a bit of a stuffy reputation over the years and to the average gen Z/ millennial, yes, it does conjure up the mental image of grandpas nodding off to Classic FM. But let's face it, that was the past! With streaming services taking over the world, classical music is getting a serious facelift, and it's about time. Lossless audio, hi-res streaming, Dolby Atmos? These fancy schmancy innovations are making classical music sound better than ever before.

With Apple leading the charge with this new classical music service, creatively named Apple Music Classical, expect all your specific needs to be met as a classical music enthusiast. The brand bought Primephonic in 2021, and since then, rumors have been flying about a dedicated Apple service for the genre. The new home for all things classical music, brought to you by the tech giant with a bite out of its logo. So, dust off those preconceptions and get ready to rock out...I mean, Bach out!

What is Apple Music Classical?

This new service is separate from Apple Music, with its own app that can be downloaded for free. The platform is designed specifically to cater to the complexities and intricacies of searching for classical music variations, recordings, and arrangements. Apple claims that its new service, Apple Music Classical, offers access to over five million tracks, making it the world's largest classical music catalogue, with thousands of exclusive albums. Users can efficiently navigate through the vast library by searching for a specific recording by composer, work, conductor, or catalogue number using the powerful and intuitive search function. The app has been curated by classical music experts who are passionate about helping both beginners and seasoned music lovers discover great works.

When can I avail of it?

The service was launched on 28th March 2023 on the App Store. Apparently, they picked the same day as the release of the new Sonos Era 300 smart speaker, which also conveniently supports Apple Music's spatial audio tracks. Talk about good timing, right? It's almost as if they planned it that way... Who knows? All we can say is that it's a strange coincidence. But hey, at least you'll be able to listen to your favourite classical tracks in spatial audio on your new Sonos speaker, right? Just don't let the classical music purists catch you doing it.

How can I download the app?

You can now get your classical music fix with Apple Music Classical, available for download on the App Store. For those already subscribed to Apple Music, you're in luck! You can start jamming out to some Beethoven or Mozart at no extra charge. But, for those Android users out there, your lifelong feud may just cost you! Apple Music Classical hasn't made its way to the Google Play Store yet, leaving you with nothing but silence. Don't worry though, Apple promises it'll be available for Android soon. And if you're an iPhone user, as long as your device is running on iOS 15.4 or later, you're good to go. Just keep in mind that this app is only available for iPhones, not iPads or Macs (yet).

How much will it cost?

Alright, let's talk money! Apple Music Classical won't cost current Apple Music users a single penny more, as long as they're already shelling out ₹99 per month for their individual membership, or are mooching off their family or student plan. Sorry, but the cheapest plan won't cut it - looks like you'll have to stick to your out-of-tune shower singing for now. All you gotta do is download the Apple Music Classical app and voila, you're ready to rock with your existing subscription. But, if you're not already subscribed to Apple Music, well, you're in for a treat - a pricey one, that is. There's no option for a solo subscription to the Classical service, so you'll have to cough up the dough for a full Apple Music membership to use the Classical app. At least you'll be getting your money's worth with those lossless Mozart tunes and hi-res Tchaikovsky hits, right?

What will it look like?

This brand-spankin' new app features over five million tracks of your favourite tunes. And for all you newbies out there, don't fret – Apple's got your back with hundreds of Essentials playlists, composer bios, and deep-dive guides to help you navigate the genre. It even makes searching easier, since let’s be honest it's hard to search the lyrics of these classics! For those of us who like to get into the nitty-gritty specifics, the app promises complete and accurate metadata, thousands of composer bios, and intuitive browsing features. You can even stream the library via AirPlay 2 and Siri on compatible devices. While the layout is similar to the main Apple Music app, there's no Radio tab, and the Library tab works a bit differently, saving your albums and playlists on both the Classical and main Music app. It's a bit confusing, but hey, at least you'll have plenty of music to keep you distracted while you figure it out!

So head on over and check it out or just add it to your Lizst of apps to check out when you are Bach home and have some free time.