In an increasingly crowded sector, it's important to launch with a little noise and a better product. That's exactly what Beats Music intends to do later this month, according to multiple sources. Just before the holidays, Beats Music CEO Ian Rogers announced that Beats would launch in January. Here's what we've learned in the last few days:
- Expect launch before or during The Grammys, which will be televised on Jan 26th.
- An expensive marketing and ad campaign will follow, including diuring The Grammys and an ad buy during the Super Bowl on February 2nd., according to the NY Post. 30 second Superbowl ads run around $4 million each.
- An important tie-in with AT&T. “Finally, AT&T is going to do this,” said a senior music industry source. “It’s going to be bundled”. Fees for Beats will reportedly be a phone bill add-on for AT&T customers.
- No free tier. Unlike it's competitors, Beats is rumored to only offer a short free trial.
The Beats User Experience
Beats has confirmed that curated playlists are a core feature. “We’re going to focus really heavily on playlists, because that’s how we consume music and that’s how most people consume music,” COO Luke Woods told the press late lats year.
In fact, both curation and personalization will be baked into every corner of Beats. “We’re talking about real depth of personalization and knowing who I am, who you are, what we’re listening to, what we like, what we’ve listened to before and then offering up music that is highly relevant to our taste profile,” Woods added.
Hyepbot has spoken to several industry execs who have seen early versions of Beats, and all say it that looks impressive. "They've borrowed the best features from other (music) services, and put them together in a really interesting way," one source told Hypebot. But another told Hypebot that, while the service "looked pretty" and combined "many of the best features from other streamers", Beats didn't really break much new ground.
Can Beats Beat The Competition?
In fairness, no one Hypebot spoken to has seen the final version of Beats Music - which is certainly being improved until launch day and beyond. But will Beats be so compelling that users - now spoiled by free - suddenly want to pay? And for those who don't mind paying, will switching to Beats be worth abandoning all of the personal playlists they carefully curated elsewhere? We'll find out later this month.