Apple Music Best Practices for App Developers
We are excited to announce that Apple Music API is now available on iOS 9.3. The Apple Music API allows developers to directly control Apple Music playback for Members among other features.
- Developers can see if a user is currently a member
- Developers can see which country the users account is based
- Developers can queue up the next song or songs based on a song ID for playback
- Developers can inspect playlists already in My Music or create a new playlist with a title and description (see App Store Review Guidelines for limitation)
We encourage developers to use the Apple Music API to provide a superior user experience by integrating these features in your app. Please refer to our Apple Music API FAQ here for details on commonly asked questions regarding integration.
App Store Review Guidelines — Apple Music
There are limitations on use on the Apple Music API. Please carefully review the developer App Store Review guidelines. Below are some of the guidelines specifically related to Apple Music. If you have questions, consult with the Apple Developer Relations team.
- 8.6 Apps that include the ability to save or download music or video content from third party sources (e.g. Apple Music, YouTube, SoundCloud, Vimeo, etc) without explicit authorization from those sources will be rejected
- 11.8 Apps that use IAP to purchase access to built-in capabilities provided by iOS, watchOS, and tvOS, such as the camera or the gyroscope, or Apple-branded peripherals, such as Apple Pencil or Apple Keyboard, or Apple services, such as Apple Music access or iCloud storage, will be rejected
- 30.1 Apps using the Apple Music API that trigger playback without explicit user action will be rejected
- 30.2 Apps using the Apple Music API must expose and respect standard media controls such as “play,” pause,” and “skip.”
- 30.3 Apps using the Apple Music API may not require payment or otherwise monetize access to the Apple Music service (e.g. in-app purchase, advertising, requesting user info)
For detailed information regarding the new Apple Music APIs please reference:
Referring to Apple Music
- Always typeset Apple Music as two words with an uppercase A and an uppercase M followed by lowercase letters.
- Always use the name Apple Music in English, even when it appears within text in a language other than English. Do not translate the word Music within the name Apple Music. Do not transliterate Apple Music or Music.
- Always use the complete name Apple Music. Don’t use Apple alone. Don’t use Music alone.
- Never replace the name Apple with the Apple logo, . Spell out the full name Apple Music.
- Use Listen on MUSIC and Apple Music badges made available by Apple. Do not create your own.
- Do not use the Apple logo to represent Apple Music.
- You may use the Apple Music icon assets, made available by Apple, to represent Apple Music.
Visit the Apple Music Identity Guidelines site for a comprehensive set of information and to download Apple Music related assets.
Apple Music is currently available in 113 countries including China, Japan and Russia. With the ability to determine if a user of your app is an Apple Music member developers now have a unique opportunity to participate in the affiliate program.
If a user is not a member of Apple Music you can provide them the option to sign up for Apple Music. Affiliate partners can earn a one-time commission when referrals result in a conversion from a members trial period to the first paid month for Apple Music. Apply now or learn more about the affiliate program.
Linking to Apple Music
Apple Music Toolbox
The best place to find links for all things Apple Music is the Apple Music Toolbox. You can also find embeddable widgets for albums, songs and playlists. All toolbox links are optimized to be geo aware and to automatically launch the Apple Music client on your user’s device.
Apple Music Toolbox provides ready-made, geo-aware links, meaning users around the world will always be directed to the correct content in their home storefront, even when the link they click is specific to a different storefront. Continue reading to learn more about region specific content and the importance of geo aware links.
Region Specific Content
Did you know that the same albums and songs in different regions will have different IDs? For example the ID for Drake’s If You’re Reading This Its Too Late in the US is 966997496. In the UK the ID is 966984970. Make sure you check the user’s storefront in order to provide the right content ID for playback. See the Search API or EPF for more information on getting content metadata including region specific IDs.
If you are just linking to music you can prepend a “geo” prefix to any link and we will route the user to the right content in their region so you do not have to worry about finding the right ID. As mentioned above, all links provided by the Apple Music Toolbox automatically include the geo prefix.
Example geo aware link structure: https://geo.itunes.apple.com/us/album/if-youre-reading-this-its/id966997496
By default, links for music content take users into Apple Music and no additional parameters are needed. For the affiliate program however, proper attribution requires the use of the following parameter: app=music. So be sure to add the app=music parameter to all music links to earn affiliate commission for Apple Music.
Example link: https://geo.itunes.apple.com/us/album/if-youre-reading-this-its/id966997496?app=music
Similarly, if you’d prefer to send a user to the iTunes Store (bypassing the Apple Music default), you may add the following parameter: app=itunes
Example link: https://geo.itunes.apple.com/us/album/if-youre-reading-this-its/id966997496?app=itunes
Note: All links provided by the Apple Music Toolbox automatically include the app=music parameter.