It could be that Apple's free music streaming service, iTunes Radio, is set to launch internationally following its “sporadic availability” in select countries, a recent report explains. Over the last few days, iDevice users in the United Kingdom, Australia, and Canada have noticed the iTunes Radio pane appear in the iOS Music application.
The news reached us from AppleInsider, which notes that out of the three countries, users in the United Kingdom are having the most luck with iTunes Radio. It's “active and streaming in the region,” according to the publication, and though some user interface (UI) elements aren't functioning as they should, certain British users are actually able to stream iTunes Radio over a cellular data network (as in the below image).
In Australia and Canada, the service is less functional, however. AppleInsider explains:
According to reports from Canadian users, the iTunes Radio pane is accessible but not usable. Graphical assets may be scrolled through and will pull up relevant artist or song information if tapped, but streaming is so far unavailable. One user from Australia saw the service appear briefly earlier this week, but it has since disappeared.
Apple first announced iTunes Radio during WWDC 2013, and it subsequently launched for the general public a couple of months later. In October, we heard that Apple had been hiring programmers in Canada, in a move which suggested the music streaming service was about to launch outside of the United States.
Then, a Bloomberg report argued that the first wave of iTunes Radio's international launch would happen in “early 2014,” and would see the service appear in the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand. Around the same time, Eddy Cue - Apple's senior vice president of Internet Software and Services - said in an interview that he wants iTunes Radio to be available “in more than 100 countries,” and he specifically mentioned the United Kingdom as being one of those countries.
If you're based overseas, have you noticed an iTunes Radio pane appear in your Music app? We'll keep you updated with further information as we receive it.
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