iTunes Radio to launch on September 18

The date was revealed at a press conference for the new iPhones in California

iTunes Radio to launch on September 18

Photo: Apple

iTunes Radio, Apple's music streaming service, is set to launch on September 18.

During a press conference held earlier today (September 10) for the new iPhones 5S and 5C in Cupertino, California, around 200 new features for the iOS 7 software were revealed and confirmed, including the long-awaited iTunes Radio, reports Rolling Stone. Whilst tracks stream on the service, users will be offered the chance the buy the music via iTunes. The 5S is 40 times faster than the original iPhones and comes in grey, silver and gold. "It's the most forward-thinking phone ever made," said Apple's marketing chief, Philip Schiller.

The free internet radio will feature over 200 stations with a large catalogue of music after Apple recently inked deals with all the major record labels. The service will go ahead Stateside after the brand made sponsorship deals with companies such as McDonald's, Pepsi and Nissan. Users will hear an audio advert every 15 minutes and see a video ad every hour. Brands such as McDonald's, Pepsi, Nissan and Procter & Gamble have committed to take out advertising campaigns. It is claimed that iTunes Radio adverts will be opened up to brands who agree to spend at least $1 million with Apple from the start of 2014.

iTunes Radio users will be offered the use of personalised radio stations tailored to their own taste as dictated by the music they already listen to on iTunes. Additional stations will be based on genre with others curated by Apple.

Earlier this year rivals Nokia criticised iTunes Radio, accusing Apple of "playing catch-up" in comparison to its own Nokia Music service. "We launched our streaming radio service in 2011. It's interesting to see Apple react now and it seems they continue to play catch-up," said Nokia Entertainment CEO Jyrki Rosenberg. "Nokia Music will stay true to our mobile-first approach and continue to deliver an extremely simple, personalised and contextual way to discover and enjoy music on the go."

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