Apple has been aggressively focused on improving its Apple Music service to compete mainly with Spotify, currently the top dog in steaming music. As part of that, it looks like Apple is going to roll out browser-based streaming of songs and playlists, and not short preview clips, but full songs. The ability has been added to the Apple Music tools website with an updated interface that allows users to log in and play songs, albums, and playlists from an embeddable widget.
Being able to create widgets for Apple Music is not new in and of itself. This is something that Apple has provided web developers all along, allowing artists to promote their music on their websites. However, previously Apple limited playback to 30-90 seconds, meaning artists could only enable site visitors to preview a music clip before being whisked away to iTunes for the full song. That has now changed.
A user on Reddit noticed that Apple upgraded the widget's interface. Now users can log into their Apple Music account and play full songs, albums, and playlists all from within the web browser.
The change comes just ahead of Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC). It's not clear what exactly Apple is planning in regards to its Apple Music service, but this new ability suggests it could unveil a full online Apple Music client so that users could access and play back their full catalog of songs from within a web browser the same as they on their Apple Music mobile app.
At present, the upgraded widget offers play/pause controls, the ability to skip tracks, and a progress scrubber. There is more that Apple would need to add for this to truly to compete with Spotify, such as being able to browse a user's library. But those bits would presumably be part of the overall experience, if this is something that Apple is getting ready to unveil.
Alternately, Apple could limit the functionality to its widget tool for web developers. Here's hoping that is not the case.