Apple iOS isn't the only mobile game in town for Apple Music anymore. Apple on Tuesday released a beta version of Apple Music for Android in the Google Play Store.
The 29 MB download requires Android 4.3 or better and is free to install. Apple still offers a 30-day free trial for its music streaming service. If you want to sign up for or upgrade to a family plan, however, you won't find it here: Apple says an iOS or Mac computer is required for that at the moment.
It's a smart move for two reasons: One, Apple Music is reworking of Beats Music, which was previously supported on on Android and two: There are far more Android users worldwide than there are iOS users. That gives Apple Music much more room to grow beyond the last-reported 6.5 million paying subscribers
Since the Apple Music family plan is cost-effective for me, my wife and two kids, I've stuck with the service, paying $14.99 a month for access -- both online and off -- to more than 30 million tracks. I switch phones and platforms often though, so Android support for the service is a bonus.
After downloading the Android version, I was able to sign in with my Apple ID and immediately had access to all of the tunes added to My Music. The interface is very Android-like in terms of menus and such, but I see that as a positive since Android users are familiar with it. Everything else looks and sounds like the iOS version.
For the privacy buffs, I took a quick look at the permissions that Apple requires on Android devices for Apple Music and there were no major red flags.
Required permissions include the ability to read phone status and identity, read and modify contents of an SD card, Wi-Fi and mobile broadband network access, pairing with Bluetooth devices and preventing the phone from sleeping.