How to Use Apple Music Radio in iTunes

Learn how to use Apple Music Radio to make your own stations

Listening to the same songs can get repetitive. One way to add variety to your music and to discover new artists similar to the ones you already like is to use the Apple Music Radio feature in iTunes. Use Apple Music Radio (often called Radio), to create Pandora-style radio stations that you can customize to your listening preferences. Discover new music related to the music you already love and take those stations with you anywhere you have iTunes.

Instructions in this article apply to iTunes 11.1 and newer.

Apple Music Radio is available as part of an Apple Music subscription. It used to be called iTunes Radio before the transition in January 2016.

How to Create a New Apple Music Radio Station

Before you create your first radio station, make sure you're running the latest version of iTunes. You need iTunes 11.1 or newer to use Radio.

One of the best features of Apple Music Radio is Beats 1, a streaming radio station programmed by DJs. This article only covers making your own stations.

Making a new radio station in iTunes works by basing the station on an existing song in your library, similar to how Pandora works. Apple Music Radio intelligently determines which other music you might like based on your initial choice.

  1. Open your music library and locate a song, album, or artist that you want the station to be based on.

    The Radio option in the Music section of iTunes isn't used to create a new Apple Music Radio station. It's Apple's selection of pre-made radio stations.

  2. Select the ... icon next to the item, then choose Create Station.

    Create Station menu item in iTunes
  3. Radio creates the station and begins playing music from it.

When listening to your radio station, you won't see which songs are coming next. However, you can skip songs using the Skip button in the top left corner, next to the Play/Pause button.

To find your new station, go to the Radio tab and find it in the Recently Played section.

Apple Music Radio tab

How to Rate Radio Songs to Improve Your Stations

While listening to a station in Radio, you can provide feedback to Apple about how you like the song that's currently playing. The service uses that information to deliver more songs like it or to exclude similar songs, depending on your answer.

You can provide two key pieces of information to improve your stations. When a song is playing, select the three-dot menu next to it then choose Love so that Radio plays more music like that, or choose Dislike to avoid that kind of music.

Love and Dislike buttons for iTunes Radio

How to Add Radio Songs to Your Library

If you love the song that Apple Music Radio is currently playing, add it to your library to always have access to it.

To do this, access the three-dot menu next to the active song, then choose Add to Library.

Add to Library menu item in iTunes

Apple Music Radio Limitations

When Radio was first introduced, it was a full-featured service that offered features to manage stations, buy music, and more. Over time, Apple removed most features from Apple Music Radio and the service is now limited. For example, you can't delete Apple Music Radio stations. Once you create a station, it lives in your iTunes or Music app forever. However, it doesn't cause any problems since it's only on the Radio screen in iTunes.

Some other things you can't do with Radio, some of which used to be offered in iTunes Radio, include:

  • Add new songs or artists to stations to make them more customized.
  • Add songs to an iTunes Wish List.
  • Manage explicit lyrics preferences on a per-station basis.
  • Reset the iTunes radio station to undo all your Loved and Disliked feedback.
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