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Apple Music Was Second Biggest Global Music Streaming Service in 2019

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Global online music streaming subscriptions were up 32 percent year-over-year in 2019, hitting 358 million subscribers, according to new estimates shared today by Counterpoint Research.


Spotify was the market leader with a 31 percent share of total revenue and a 35 percent share of total paid subscriptions, while Apple Music earned the second place slot with a 24 percent share of total revenues in the industry and a 19 percent share of the total paid subscriptions. ‌Apple Music‌'s subscription base grew an estimated 36 percent year-over-year.

Amazon Music, YouTube Music, and Tencent Music all trailed both ‌Apple Music‌ and Spotify.
"Spotify maintained its top spot with the help of promotional activities like free Spotify Premium for three months, price cuts, customized campaigns like Spotify and a focus on exclusive content. Tech giants like Amazon, Apple, Google have started focusing on music streaming and have sufficient cash at their disposal to give stiff competition to Spotify. ‌Apple Music‌ is making improvements in its app like the introduction of night mode, curated playlists to target a group, etc. Similarly, Amazon Music has been trying lossless music and is creating its own niche where it competes with Tidal."
More than 80 percent of total streaming music revenue came from paid subscriptions, while the rest came from advertisements and partnerships with brands and telcos.

Counterpoint Research believes that online streaming music subscriptions will grow more than 25 percent year-over-year to exceed 450 million subscriptions by the end of 2020.

Apple last shared specific ‌Apple Music‌ subscriber numbers in June 2019, announcing that the service had reached 60 million paid subscribers. That number is likely quite a bit higher now, but Apple has not shared new official subscriber totals in 2020.
This article, "Apple Music Was Second Biggest Global Music Streaming Service in 2019" first appeared on MacRumors.com

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iPad Launched 10 Years Ago Today, App Developer Reflects on Getting Access to a Top-Secret Prototype

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On the 10th anniversary of the iPad launching in stores, Agile Partners co-founder Jack Ivers has shared an interesting story about how his company managed to get in Apple's good graces and ultimately gain access to prototype iPads.


The story begins in 2008, when Agile Partners released GuitarToolkit as one of the first iPhone apps on the App Store. The app used the iPhone's microphone to detect musical notes in an incoming audio stream to see the real-time pitch of a guitar string. Apple has long had an interest in music, so the app quickly caught its eye.

In 2009, Apple covertly reached out to Agile Partners about featuring GuitarToolkit in a worldwide advertising campaign:
We began receiving calls that went as follows:

Apple: We need you to internationalize GuitarToolkit for the following languages: Japanese, simplified Chinese, German, French, and Spanish. By next week please.

Agile: Ummm ... why?

Apple: Sign this NDA.

Agile: Here you go. So tell us more.

Apple: We're considering featuring GuitarToolkit in an advertising campaign, but no promises. Will you do the internationalization?

Apple was asking us to jump, and it didn't take too much reflection to respond, "how high?" GuitarToolkit ended up being featured in a series of worldwide print and TV campaigns, including one that appeared on the back cover of many of the most prestigious magazines in the U.S. and around the world.
GuitarToolkit ended up being featured on the back cover of many popular magazines:


Then, in February 2010, just days after Steve Jobs unveiled the original iPad, an Apple executive reached out to Agile Partners requesting a quick conversation about something "important." After signing a very strict NDA, Agile Partners ended up being invited to Apple's headquarters to develop an iPad version of their GuitarToolkit app.

Agile Partners was provided with access to prototype iPads to develop its app and, unsurprisingly, they were located in a "locked, nondescript, unlabeled room on the second or third floor on the building that housed the Infinite Loop cafeteria."
The room had blackout curtains hanging inside the door so that, even when the door was open, you couldn't see inside. The room had three or four sturdy industrial tables, each with an iPad prototype chained to it. Each iPad was completely encased in what appeared to be Kevlar, with just the screen and home button exposed. Almost none of the industrial design was visible – bezels, back, edges, even the iPad's thickness, were all obscured by the bulky case.

Each table also had a Mac with a special Xcode that could build to the iPad. We spent the day tweaking app settings for the new screen dimensions, getting past beta glitches, and finally successfully building TabToolkit on the prototype iPads.
Agile Partners eventually became VIP attendees at WWDC 2010, where its iPad app received an Apple Design Award.
This article, "iPad Launched 10 Years Ago Today, App Developer Reflects on Getting Access to a Top-Secret Prototype" first appeared on MacRumors.com

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Apple Offers Employees Deep Discounts on HomePod and Beats Headphones

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Apple is offering employees significant discounts on products that include the HomePod and Beats headphones, according to details on the deals shared by MacGeneration and 9to5Mac.


Apple is said to be clearing stock of Beats headphones and HomePods, providing them to employees through an internal deals program. The ‌HomePod‌ is available at a 50 percent discount, dropping the price to $149.50, while Beats are also available at a reduced price.

There's no confirmed word on why Apple is offering HomePods and Beats headphones to employees at a discount, but in the case of the ‌HomePod‌, there are rumors that Apple is working on a new lower-cost model that could come out at some point this year.

Apple may also simply have excess ‌HomePod‌ and Beats stock due to reduced sales or a miscalculation in production.

Apple has offered similar deep discounts on products to employees a few times in the past, and provides smaller discounts on all of its products for employees who want to make a purchase through an employee store.
Related Roundup: HomePod
Buyer's Guide: HomePod (Neutral)

This article, "Apple Offers Employees Deep Discounts on HomePod and Beats Headphones" first appeared on MacRumors.com

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MacRumors Giveaway: Win a Luna Display Adapter for Converting an iPad or Mac Into a Second Screen

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For this week's giveaway, we've once again teamed up with Astro to give MacRumors readers a chance to win a Luna Display adapter that's able to transform an iPad or an extra Mac into a secondary display for a main machine.


The tiny Luna Display adapter plugs into your Mac through a USB-C port (newer Macs) or a Mini DisplayPort (older Macs) and then when paired with the Luna Display software, it connects an ‌iPad‌ or another Mac to your primary Mac using WiFi, giving new life to old iPads and Macs.


When connected, the Luna Display extends the Mac's display to the secondary Mac or the ‌iPad‌ so the device can be used as a second screen, something that's especially useful these days with many people working from home with makeshift office setups.


Priced at $80, the Luna Display sets itself apart from Apple's built-in Sidecar functionality with Mac-to-Mac support, something ‌Sidecar‌ doesn't do. Luna Display also works with older iPads, making it a more versatile option.

With Mac-to-Mac mode, the primary Mac needs macOS El Capitan or later, while the secondary Mac needs to be running macOS Mountain Lion or later, so this feature works with some machines that are quite a bit older.


For the best performance, the main Mac should be a 2012 MacBook Air or later, a 2012 MacBook Pro or later, a 2012 Mac mini or later, a 2012 iMac or later, or a 2013 Mac Pro or later.


In Mac-to-Mac mode, Luna Display provides full keyboard, trackpad, and mouse support on both of the Macs, with more info available from the Luna Display website.

Luna Display also works with almost all modern iPads, with expanded support over what's available using Apple's ‌Sidecar‌. Luna Display is compatible with the ‌iPad‌ 2 or later, all ‌iPad‌ mini models, all iPad Pro models, and all ‌iPad‌ Air models, with iOS 9.1 or later as the only requirement. Performance is faster on newer iPads, but older models work well too.



The Luna Display can be purchased from the Luna Display website, and we have five of them to give away to MacRumors readers. To enter to win our ‌giveaway‌, use the Gleam.io widget below and enter an email address. Email addresses will be used solely for contact purposes to reach the winners and send the prizes. You can earn additional entries by subscribing to our weekly newsletter, subscribing to our YouTube channel, following us on Twitter, following us on Instagram, or visiting the MacRumors Facebook page.

Due to the complexities of international laws regarding giveaways, only U.S. residents who are 18 years or older and Canadian residents (excluding Quebec) who have reached the age of majority in their province or territory are eligible to enter. To offer feedback or get more information on the ‌giveaway‌ restrictions, please refer to our Site Feedback section, as that is where discussion of the rules will be redirected.

Luna Display Giveaway
The contest will run from today (April 3) at 11:00 a.m. Pacific Time through 11:00 a.m. Pacific Time on April 10. The winners will be chosen randomly on April 10 and will be contacted by email. The winners will have 48 hours to respond and provide a shipping address before new winners are chosen.
This article, "MacRumors Giveaway: Win a Luna Display Adapter for Converting an iPad or Mac Into a Second Screen" first appeared on MacRumors.com

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U.S. Senators Question Apple CEO Tim Cook About COVID-19 App Privacy

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Four U.S. senators, Bob Menendez, Kamala Harris, Cory Booker and Richard Blumenthal, on Friday sent a letter to Apple CEO Tim Cook expressing concern over "the safety and security of Americans' private health data" in regard to the recently released COVID-10 website and app, reports Bloomberg.


The senators questioned Cook about Apple's data-sharing practices and safeguards, and whether the COVID-19 app complies with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). They also want details on Apple's agreements with federal or state governments for the development of the app.

When announcing the app and the website, which Apple developed with the CDC, the White House Coronavirus Task Force, and FEMA, Apple said that any data users provide on the COVID-19 website or app is not shared with Apple, the CDC, or any other government agency, as specified on the COVID-19 website. What little information Apple does collect, such as how people use the site, is used for bug fixes.
Apple is not collecting your answers from the screening tool. To help improve the site, Apple collects some information about how you use it. The information collected will not personally identify you.
Apple also does not require users to sign in to use the app and the data is not associated with a user's Apple ID, nor does it ask for any personally identifiable information.
Consistent with Apple's strong dedication to user privacy, the COVID-19 app and website were built to keep all user data private and secure. The tools do not require a sign-in or association with a user's ‌Apple ID‌, and users' individual responses will not be sent to Apple or any government organization.
Apple debuted the COVID-19 website and app on March 27. It serves as a screening tool where users can answer questions about symptoms, exposure risk, and more, to receive CDC recommendations on the next steps they should take, such as social distancing or obtaining a test.

Note: Due to the political or social nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Political News forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.
This article, "U.S. Senators Question Apple CEO Tim Cook About COVID-19 App Privacy" first appeared on MacRumors.com

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