It is almost a year since Apple debuted the music streaming service, Apple Music, and it is perhaps time for sweeping changes to improve usability. If reports are to be believed, the service may get a major update at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference in June this year, though details are sketchy on what actually may constitute these changes.

Alongside its announcement of Apple’s quarterly earnings in April, the Cupertino giant confirmed that Apple Music now has 13 million paying subscribers. Right from the beginning, Apple Music was loaded with features, including a library of over 30 million songs, 24x7 curated Beats One radio station, playlists, offline mode as well as the facility to link up with a user’s existing iTunes music library. Apple even gave subscribers a free three months’ trial after the launch, before the paid subscription kicked in.

While Apple Music is impressive in its current avatar, the service could do with a bunch of changes. “Apple is altering the user interface of Apple Music to make it more intuitive to use, according to people familiar with the product who asked not to be identified because the plans aren’t public. Apple also plans to better integrate its streaming and download businesses and expand its online radio service," reports Bloomberg.

Here is what we would like to see with the Apple Music 2.0 reboot.

While it is colourful with attractive visuals, Apple Music’s current interface isn’t entirely easy for first-time users. That, in itself, is completely unlike most Apple products. What Apple Music really needs is a better music discovery mechanism, something that its immediate rival Spotify has.

The subscription price is perhaps one of the reasons why the uptake of the service is not as quick as Apple hoped, particularly in regions such as India. Perhaps, Apple could consider a free-to-download-and-use version of Apple Music, which will be supported by advertisements. That is the way Spotify works, which now has 55 million free users and 20 million paid. This could just become a very welcome disruption in the segment.

If personalized music suggestions are something Apple is touting as a big feature in Music, it is time to give the users more control over what they want to listen to. There should ideally be an option that would allow us to mark certain artists or albums in the “do not suggest" category. This will clean up suggestions even more.

Then there is the question of the apps. Integrating the streaming service in the existing Music app on iPhone and iPad made sense, but tethering it to the iTunes interface in Windows and Mac is just a bad idea. A standalone app for PCs would be a very interesting idea. Or even a web browser-based lighter interface, something that Indian streaming services such as Saavn offer.

Beats Radio stations and a bunch of other curated options are good, but if that has to really catch on, Apple will have to add more options across genres. Particularly if it hopes that the concept of paid subscriptions for radio stations will eventually catch on.

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