Apple Music is getting savaged by critics

Veteran Apple blogger Jim Dalrymple is not a fan of Apple Music.

Ahead of the official launch of the music streaming service, Dalrymple had a chance to give it a go, and came away saying he was “damned impressed.”

But three weeks down the line, and he has had a serious change of heart — savaging the Apple product in a brutal post entitled “Apple Music is a nightmare and I’m done with it.”

Describing it as “nothing short of a mind-blowing exercise in frustration,” Dalrymple raises a number of concerns, including:

  • Not all songs from an album get automatically added to a user’s music library.
  • Apple Music sometimes thinks that songs are already added when they aren’t.
  • Not recognising when a user already owns an album.
  • Not adding albums properly, or adding them using songs from other albums — “I added ZZ Top’s ‘The Very Baddest’ album. Instead of downloading all of the songs from that album, it downloaded them from multiple albums. So now I have several ZZ Top albums, each with a few songs on them.”
  • Selecting irrelevant music interests for users.
  • Most worryingly, after Dalrymple turned off Apple Music, “it look large chunks of my purchased music with it.” 4,700 songs disappeared from his library, including much “added from CDs years ago that I no longer have access to.”

We’ve reached out to Apple for comment about Dalrymple’s concerns and will update when it responds. Meanwhile, other tech commentators are leaping on his comments. Anil Dash, a blogger and entrepreneur, described the post as “incredibly damning.” He explained: “If someone as expert as [Dalrymple] is this flummoxed, that puts Apple Music on par with Apple Maps as a failure of user experience” — a reference to the botched launch of Apple’s mapping service.

TechCrunch reporter Romain Dillet said on Twitter that he has “encountered the same issues with Apple Music, and that Apple “needs to get the basic features right.” Another veteran Apple blogger, John Gruber, quoted a section of Dalrymple’s post and added a simple message: “Ouch.”

Jason Snell, writing on Six Colours, says he’s seen “some of the symptoms Jim [Dalrymple] reports, though not nearly as severely.” But he goes on to point out another problem with Apple Music — outages of Apple’s cloud services. It crashed earlier this week, leaving users unable to access their Apple Music collections. “What those outages did is point out that with all the great convenience of having the world’s music library at your beck and call,” he writes, “if the servers go down when you want to listen to music, you’re out of luck.”

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