If you really love voice assistants, and tend to use them for everything you possibly can in your life — including playing your music — you might be pleased to hear that Apple Music’s Siri-only plan is available now as part of iOS 15.2. Dubbed the “Voice Plan,” it comes at a significantly reduced cost compared to the service’s other non-Student plans, but it has some drawbacks as a result.
We covered the Voice Plan in greater detail a couple months ago, but we’ll briefly summarize its functionality again here. If you sign up for the plan, you’ll only be paying $5 a month for the same, unlimited access too all of Apple Music’s 90 million songs, “tens of thousands of playlists,” or its various Radio stations.
Then there’s the catch: you can only access that content by asking Siri to play it for you. Depending on what device you’re using to play music, you may or may not be able to control it using on-screen controls. The iPhone is one device where this feature works — you have to use Siri to start a song, but you can pause, play, and adjust the progress bar through an on-screen panel (not the full Music app, however).
It’s pretty simple, to be honest; there aren’t really any hidden complexities to be aware of. It’s just honest-to-goodness discounted music streaming with stripped-back features. It’s not ideal for those who want more granular control over their music-playing experience, but it could be viewed as a significant step-up over the ad-supported model of Spotify’s free plan (to name one example).
If you’re new to Apple Music, you can try any of the service’s plans out at no cost for three months. After the trial is up, you’ll be auto-billed $5, $10, or $15 per month depending on the plan you selected at sign-up.
Other notable features arriving with iOS 15.2 today include additional protections for minors using the Messages app and the “Digital Legacy” tool, which lets you effectively designate an heir for your iCloud account and other personal data in the event of your death (assuming Apple is still around when that day comes).