Apple has been hiring iconic designers from around the world to create new Apple Music Playlist covers in a bid to offer more distinction and instant recognition to its music playlists.
Rachel Newman, Apple’s global director of editorial, said the new artwork was designed to “connect more directly with the communities and the culture for which they were intended” and serve as “a visual representation of the music you will find inside that playlist.”
Over the next few months, the company will roll out more new artwork designs, with Apple Music planning to redesign thousands of playlists covers, up from the hundreds of new designs currently being introduced across Apple Music on iOS and the web.
Apple’s commitment to artwork shows that the company is more serious about its ambitions in the niche, and follows news that Apple Music now has more paid subscribers than Spotify in the US.
By introducing custom art, Apple Music can further distinguish itself from Spotify and build a diverse visual identity, away from its current black-and-white user interface.
Unlike the previous playlist covers, many of which were designed using artificial intelligence, the new covers require thousands of man-hours to commission, design and include in Apple Music, a commitment that echoes its ethos of going above and beyond in the name of art.
For playlists like “Dale Reggaeton,” “Puro Jefe,” and “Al Cien Con La Banda,” Apple worked with Carlos Perez, director of the Luis Fonsi “Despacito” video.
Gerard Huerta, best known his custom letter work for bands like AC/DC, Blue Oyster Cult, Boston, and Foreigner, was commissioned for “The Riff” and “Classic Metal” playlists, as first reported in The Verge.
It’s exciting to see Apple take pride in its playlist artwork and finally do something about their generic looking playlist covers.
In the coming months, it will be interesting to see what Apple Music looks like, particularly at a time when Apple is expected to ramp up marketing as it launches a TV streaming and magazine subscription product to boost Services revenue.
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