Apple Music are keeping podcasts separate from their music streaming service but audiobooks could be a game-changer.

Apple Music have added 13 audiobooks free to stream for Apple Music subscribers in the US. The limited selection of books marks a potentially exciting content expansion for the music streaming service, however the audiobooks are only available for U.S. subscribers for now.

The audiobooks on offer are all from iconic musicians and range in content from autobiographies to music wisdom for other musicians. The featured artists, reported by 9 to 5 Mac, are:

  • Rakim
  • Questlove
  • Patti Smith
  • Pete Townshend
  • Tommy Lee, Vince Neil, Nikki Sixx & Mick Mars
  • Kim Gordon
  • Debbie Harry
  • Carrie Underwood
  • Russ
  • Kenny Rogers
  • Paul Stanley
  • Timbaland & Veronica Chambers
  • Bobby Brown & Nick Chiles

Audiobooks haven’t been used by music services to expand their offerings in an increasingly competitive industry. Amazon have multiple offerings on the music streaming circuit and haven’t made any move to integrate their audiobook platform Audible into it.

This could be a one-off, but if it leads to further offerings it could be Apple Music’s ace to distinguish its service. Whilst Spotify have made a big push into the world of podcasts to great success, Apple Music have avoided integrating the blossoming content.

Apple already has a podcast platform but they’ve opted to keep it separate from music streaming, instead deciding to distinguish the platforms as well as iTunes and Videos even more so. This splitting up of the services has seen the long-awaited launch of an Apple Music web player so iTunes isn’t required for the streaming service on desktops.