Apple recently announced the aptly named Apple Music Classical, a standalone app dedicated to… you guessed it – streaming classical music. The app and service will only be available from 28 March but you can place a ‘preorder’ in the meantime on the App Store. Although in this case, all a ‘preorder’ does is tell Apple to give you the app when it launches.
The fruit company claims its new app and service offers listeners the largest classical music catalogue in the world with some 5 million tracks and “hundreds of curated playlists, thousands of exclusive albums, insightful composer biographies, deep-dive guides for many key works, intuitive browsing features and much more,” Apple said in a press release.
Apple’s classical music renaissance
— Apple Music Classical (@AppleClassical) March 9, 2023
The app sports what appears to be a relatively simple interface. Users will use that to search by composer, work, conductor, or catalogue number to find what they’re after. The service will also offer “complete and accurate metadata” along with “[t]housands of editorial notes including composer biographies, descriptions of key works, and more.”
As far as technical specs go, the new app will allow high-quality listening with up to 192 kHz/24-bit Hi-Res Lossless. You’ll need to make sure you’re on WiFI or have an unlimited data plan if you want all that quality, or it will chew through your data faster than you think. Unfortunately, offline downloads won’t be possible, according to The Verge. Apple also says a few thousand compatible recordings will be available with its spatial audio format.
If this feels a little out of the blue for you, maybe you forgot that Apple acquired the classical music streaming service Primephonic in 2021. Back then, its standalone classical music app was supposed to come out last year. They must’ve faced some difficulties or maybe they didn’t feel the time was right. Either way, it will be available soon. But not for everyone.
There are a few things you’ll need before you’re tapping your foot to Bach. Having a newish iPhone is a good place to start. At launch, the app will only be available on devices running iOS 15.4 or later. An Android launch is “coming soon”. While the service doesn’t carry additional charges and the app is free to download, you’ll still need a student, individual, or family subscription to Apple Music. Subscribers on the voice plan will miss out on this.