October 20, 2015 Last Updated 8:14 am

Apple CEO says Apple Music has 6.5M paying customers

Over 200 apps will be removed by Apple after it is discovered that they are gathering user information

The CEO of Apple, Tim Cook, told the Wall Street Journal technology conference that its Apple Music service has launched with 6.5 million paying customers. Another 8.5 million are participating in the music service’s 90-day free trial, Cook also said.

Apple Music-iPhoneWith 15 million users, that would still make Apple Music far behind Spotify, which said this summer that it had reached 20 million paid subscribers, with more than 75 million active users in total.

Nonetheless, this is certainly a good start for Apple, as the company is hoping that iOS device owners will use the service by default as the potential number of users continue to grow as hardware sales grow.

Apple should tout its Apple Music numbers when it reports earnings next week. Apple will be reporting its Q4 numbers as its financial year begins in October.

Observers will be on the look out for Apple Watch sales, details of which have been a bit vague up till now. Also, expectations are that iPhone sales will continue to be Apple’s profit driver, even as iPad sales continue to decline. Apple will be launching its new iPad Pro model sometime after the earnings announcement, with the latest rumored date said to be November 6.

Apple is said to be removing over 200 apps that are in violation of developer guidelines as they are secretly gathering user information. The problem appears to be that of a third party ad SDK:

“We’ve identified a group of apps that are using a third-party advertising SDK, developed by Youmi, a mobile advertising provider, that uses private APIs to gather private information, such as user email addresses and device identifiers, and route data to its company server.

This is a violation of our security and privacy guidelines. The apps using Youmi’s SDK will be removed from the App Store and any new apps submitted to the App Store using this SDK will be rejected. We are working closely with developers to help them get updated versions of their apps that are safe for customers and in compliance with our guidelines back in the App Store quickly.”

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