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'Apple Music' service reportedly coming next month with a social network for artists

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Apple's long-anticipated streaming music service will likely be called Apple Music and is set to be announced at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference keynote on June 8th, according to 9to5Mac's well-connected Mark Gurman. Apple reportedly plans to launch the service, based on Beats Music, toward the end of next month, and on iOS it'll be built into a redesigned version of the Music app. There will apparently also be Mac and Android versions.

Ping lives?

Recalling Apple's ill-fated foray into social networking with Ping on iTunes, Apple Music is said to have a social layer. Unlike Ping, however, only artists themselves will have their own profiles; they'll be able to post media including music samples and share content from other artists, while regular users can like or comment using their iTunes accounts. It appears that users will be able to turn off this functionality altogether if they don't want to see artist activity in their music app.

Apple Music will reportedly launch with a free trial, which suggests there won't be a long-term free option like Spotify. The Verge has reported that Apple is petitioning music labels to kill free streaming options, and that the FTC is investigating the company's business practices.

Apple's WWDC keynote is on Monday June 8th, and we'll be there to bring you the news live.