Earlier this week, reports from Bloomberg News and 9to5Mac outlined some changes coming to Apple Music in iOS 10, including a new design and the addition of song lyrics. But one aspect of the music service that's reportedly not due for an overhaul is Connect. In fact, 9to5Mac is now claiming that Connect will be demoted from its current, very prominent position in the app. Apple will get rid of the standalone Connect tab and simply add the feature to Apple Music's "For you" section.
When Apple introduced its subscription music service, the company touted Connect as a unique destination where artists could share exclusive content — be it photos, video clips, or demos / outtakes — with fans. It also allowed users to like and comment on artist posts, potentially setting up direct interactions between Apple Music subscribers and their favorite musicians. On its website, Apple describes Connect as "a main line into the heart of music — great stuff straight from the artists."
Another swing and miss at social from Apple
But it's been nearly a year since Apple Music launched, and I can't really recall seeing anything "great" from that Connect tab beyond your usual selection of tour photos and maybe a video or two. Eventually I just stopped tapping on it; I doubt I'm alone there, since other people took extra steps to hide it completely. Now Apple's going to do the same thing for all of us, signaling that it realizes Connect hasn't become the standout feature of Apple Music the company might've originally hoped for. Temporary exclusives on today's biggest albums is probably a better way of closing the subscriber gap with Spotify. Connect isn't going away entirely; it'll still remain on artist pages and in the For You section, according to 9to5Mac. So while we can't quite dub this Ping 2.0 just yet, it's not looking good.