Apple Music, iTunes Movies, and iBooks roll out in China

30 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Apple Music, iTunes Movies And iBooks Launches In China.

HONG KONG — Apple began offering its three-month-old music streaming service as well as movies and electronic books in China today (Sept 30), promising a library of content geared toward its most important market outside of the US.

Apple Music, the iPhone maker’s answer to streaming services Spotify and Pandora, will kick off with a three-month trial before charging 10 yuan (S$2.24) a month, the Cupertino, California-based company said in a statement. Users there can now also rent Chinese- and English-language movies from 5 yuan apiece, and books including Stephenie Meyer’s “Twilight” series and local titles such as Zheng Chunhua’s “Big Head Son & Little Head Dad.” Customers in China with a foreign Apple ID, such as from the US, have been able to download music from the company’s online store. Apple Music’s competitors in China already include services from Tencent, Baidu, and Netease, but all face the challenge of convincing listeners who have spent years downloading pirated music that on-demand streaming is a more attractive alternative. Apple sold a record 13 million iPhones during the debut weekend of its latest handsets, boosted by launch-day availability in China, which now accounts for more than a quarter of its revenue.

Executives have expressed confidence in the market even as the world’s second-largest economy faces its slowest pace of growth in a quarter-century. Apple said today it remains focused also on tailoring its online services for the world’s largest population of smartphone users. “One of the top requests has been more great content and we’re thrilled to bring music, movies and books to China, curated by a local team of experts,” said Mr Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services.

For example, Tencent Literature and Shanda recently announced a merger that makes it the country’s largest online publishing and ebook company, with more than three million books. Apple Music will give Chinese consumers access to artists like Eason Chan and Li Ronghao and iTunes Movies will offer “The Taking of Tiger Mountain,” a recent hit, for free for a limited amount of time, while iBooks has titles from local publishers.

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