At the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in June 2013, Apple first announced iTunes Radio streaming in conjunction with iOS 7. What have we learned about the service in the months following its initial announcement?

Apple’s iTunes Radio is a streaming music service that works on the iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, Apple TV, Mac, and PC. It’s a lot like Pandora — the more song data you provide, the smarter iTunes Radio streaming becomes.

After listening to a song, you get an option to purchase it. Plus, unlike Pandora, iTunes keeps every track of every song you’ve ever listened to in one long history list. With ads, the service is completely free. Without ads, iTunes Radio will cost you $25 annually (which is very inexpensive if you consider what Spotify and Google Play charge per month).

Now that the beta is out to developers, so far it’s everything that was predicted months ago:

  • iTunes Radio will be radio station-like (like Pandora). It has Featured Stations as well as stations inspired by your musical taste
  • As with Pandora, you can create and customize stations. iTunes Radio includes buttons like Play More Like This and Never Play This Song. Plus, it’s easy to edit stations whenever you want
  • Siri will pick songs for you based on your listening mood. You can ask Siri, for example, to “play more like this” during a song you love, or to play a certain genre, and Siri will play it
  • The music streaming library is huge
  • All the songs you listen to are listed in your History. Tap Buy, and there you go. You’ve just bought the song you streamed
  • Apple iTunes Radio is ad free with the iTunes Match service, which is something to consider if you do not want to listen to ads

It’s likely iTunes Radio streaming will be popular with iPhone users after iOS 7 drops. Happy streaming!