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Apple Music launches, now with Taylor Swift!

by Keith Wagstaff /  / Updated  / Source: TODAY

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Apple Music officially launched on Tuesday, offering users unlimited music streaming for $9.99 per month.

It enters a crowded field of similar services, including Spotify, Rdio and Jay Z's Tidal. With so many other streaming options out there, how can Apple Music compete?

For starters, it's the only one with Taylor Swift's massively popular "1989." Sure, it took a highly publicized battle over whether artists should get paid during the service's three-month free trial period, but in the end T-Swift decided to let Apple Music stream her album when the company agreed to pay artists their royalties.

Apple Music has another advantage. It's accessed through iTunes, which comes pre-loaded on every iPhone, iPad and Mac. The service is also trying to entice users with its family plan. For $14.99 a month, subscribers can share their music with up to six people.

Both Apple Music and Spotify feature around 30 million songs to stream without ads and three-month trial periods for new users, costing nothing and $0.99, respectively. Unlike Spotify, Apple Music features Internet radio stations manned by live DJs.

Apple, on the other hand, doesn't offer an ad-supported free version of its service to hook new users. Spotify does, a big reason it has over 75 million active users. (Around 20 million of those pay for ad-free streaming).

Can Apple shake off the competition? We'll get a much better idea starting today.

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