New tidbits are emerging regarding the up-and-coming iOS 8, a major new revision of the Apple mobile operating system for iPhones, iPads, and iPod touch players. Most recently, Apple has started testing an all-new iTunes Radio app that will reportedly ship pre-installed on the new OS.
Mark Gurman writing for 9to5mac reveals, yet again, Apple’s ongoing plans with iOS 8, the next major version of the company’s mobile operating system powering iDevices worldwide.
Expected to be showcased at the annual Worldwide Developers Conference in June, iOS 8 will reportedly include a built-in iTunes Radio application.
“The Cupertino company is now testing iTunes Radio as a standalone application with iOS 8,” Gurman writes, citing sources briefed on the iPhone maker’s plans.
Currently, the service is found in Apple’s Music app but, apparently, the company wants it out of there and inside its own package for marketing reasons, as well as to help customers identify it as a standalone product, a competitor to existing music-streaming apps.
Apple also seems to believe that “As a standalone application, users will be able to more quickly access iTunes Radio,” according to the report.
Interface-wise, “iTunes Radio application is said to be nearly identical to the one found inside of the iOS Music app and its Home screen icon is a terrestrial radio graphic atop a red background.”
Customers will have the ability to browse their stations and history, buy songs that they’ve streamed and liked in the past, find Featured Stations, manage stations, and create all-new stations based on songs, artists, and albums.
“These considerations are still in the early stages, so it is possible that the change does not come to fruition this year,” the report notes.
In other words, while Apple is indeed planning to embed this app in iOS 8, it may not be available for the developer preview at WWDC. This is mere speculation on our part, as the company only confirms these developer showcases one week ahead of the event, and that’s only if they’re in a good mood.
According to the same source, iOS 8 will pack a major new version of Apple Maps sporting tons of new features and a much-needed option to get public transit directions. It’s all in the related links below. In the meantime, you can share your thoughts with us about the standalone iTunes Radio app (and the service in general) in the comments section below.