Charles' CD player is dying, so he's thinking of getting an MP3 player. Leo says that physical media is fading away and going digital is a good idea. He can take all the CDs he owns and "rip" them into an mp3 format. But it's likely that everything he owns and wants to listen to are available now using music streaming services like Spotify, Pandora, or Apple Music. They're around $10 a month or $15 for a family plan.
Leo got his Apple HomePod this week and he says it's a device that suffers from an identity crisis. Apple isn't selling it as a home assistant like the Echo or Google Assistant, even though it has Siri on it. It's limited in its ability to play music, though. It's slightly better than the first generation Sonos, but not as good as a bonafide stereo system. It's just an expensive speaker for Apple Music via Airplay. It doesn't even work with Bluetooth. If you're not drinking that Kool-aid, there's no sense in buying one.
John has a new car and it doesn't have a CD player. It has a USB plug instead, but the music just jumps all around. Leo says that most car makers expect you to keep your music organized and play it from the phone. John's Corvette uses Apple CarPlay so his iPhone will interface with it really easily and he can play all his music via the iOS Music app. He can just tell it to play an album and it will play it. Or he can even tell it to play with no pauses between tracks, shuffle, create playlists, genre, and more. It's wide open in terms of options.
Kenny wants to know music streaming service is the best. Here are all of the options:
Shane isn't a big iOS fan, but he finds that the iPhone handles music and streaming much better than Android. Leo agrees, but says that Android has claimed they have finally solved their music latency problems. Even if they have, it's hard to beat how Apple handles their music. From higher resolution audio, to streaming from the cloud, to iTunes, it really is the top.
Chris doesn't understand how he can get Apple Music on his desktop, but he can get it on his mobile phone. Leo says that Apple deems it that way. It's their way or the high way.
Apple responded to complaints of Apple Music users having their music deleted by saying that they aren't deleting the music deliberately, but it could be a function of users who are subscribed to both Apple Music and iTunes Match. Leo says to choose one or the other because Apple has never adequately explained how both work in concert.
More Apple Music users have been coming forward about the service deleting their music and replacing tracks with what it thought were better quality versions. This is all happening just before whats expected to be a major revamp of Apple Music.
Chris subscribed to Apple Music and he keeps getting the "beach balling." Leo says that it could be an issue if he's also subscribed to iTunes Match. Turning on Apple Music will take his existing collection and add it to the mix and sometimes it really doesn't work well. This is because of iTunes. iTunes is old, funky, and seriously needs to be rebuilt from scratch. Leo isn't a fan. He prefers Google Music.
Chris can't find out how many songs he has in Apple's new Music app. Leo says to try sorting by songs. But it could be that Apple has dropped their obsession with the number of songs available. Leo says to go into the Settings -> General -> Usage settings and he should see how many songs he has. It should be app specific and Apple has been moving stuff like this to settings now.