Apple Cuts Some iTunes Song Previews From 90 Seconds to 30 Seconds

Back in 2010, Apple extended iTunes song previews from 30 seconds in length to 90 seconds on songs longer than 2 minutes and 30 seconds, to give users a longer listening period before making a purchase.

It appears that some songs have now reverted to 30 second play lengths rather than 90 seconds, with many popular songs offering previews that are only 30 seconds in length on both the mobile and desktop versions of iTunes.

For example, previews of all songs on Sia's new album are only 30 seconds despite all of the songs being longer than the 2 minutes and 30 seconds, a length that used to result in a 90 second preview. Many other popular albums are also demonstrating the same short 30 second previews. Coldplay's entire discography, for example, has only 30 second previews instead of the 90 seconds of preview time that was previously available.

30secondpreviews
According to one MacRumors forum user, some songs that are only available for 30 second previews were available in 90 second lengths just hours ago. User complaints on Twitter also suggest that the shift is recent.

As early as a few hours ago these were all 90 seconds! If you remember, Apple made a big deal about switching to extended previews, now a lot of songs are reverting back. Seeing more 30-second previews now than 90-second on most albums I've checked.

Though most songs at the current point in time seem to be limited to 30 second previews, there are some exceptions. Certain albums continue to offer 90 second previews, as do all of the songs listed on Apple's Top Charts. For example, Leela James' album "Fall for You" continues to offer 30 second previews, suggesting the shift may be limited to certain artists or labels.

Back when Apple first made the switch to 90 second song previews, it experienced some delays due to licensing agreements, and it is unclear if licensing has once again become an issue. It is unknown at this time if the shift to 30 second previews is a simple glitch or a more permanent change.

(Thanks, MichaelSD!)

Update July 11 6:37 AM: Apple has restored 90-second previews for some, but not all, tracks that had been affected.

Top Rated Comments

IJ Reilly Avatar
87 months ago
Horrors. I don't know about you, but this pretty much ends my life.
Score: 33 Votes (Like | Disagree)
markyr17 Avatar
87 months ago
First world problems
Score: 24 Votes (Like | Disagree)
AngerDanger Avatar
87 months ago
First world problems

This is a website devoted to rumors about a premium tech company. We're hardly going to get stories about plague and famine.

Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
PowerBook-G5 Avatar
87 months ago
And so we found a way to reduce the energy usage of our iTunes servers by almost a third - A new way to save enegy and preview music, from the ground up.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Alphabetize Avatar
87 months ago
I remember when the previews were only 30 seconds, most of the songs I wanted to preview would cut off right before the main part of the song. That's really what I want to hear to make sure I'm getting the correct cover of the song.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
teknikal90 Avatar
87 months ago
These music execs are grasping at straws
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

microsoft edge ios android

Bill Gates Says His Preference for Android Over iPhone is Due to Pre-Installed Software

Friday February 26, 2021 3:35 am PST by
Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates this week participated in his first meeting on Clubhouse, the increasingly popular invite-only conversation app, where he fielded a range of questions as part of an ongoing book tour. Gates was interviewed by journalist Andrew Ross Sorkin, and given that the Clubhouse app is currently only available on iOS, naturally one of the questions that came up was...
First Look Big Sur Feature2

Apple Releases macOS Big Sur 11.2.2 to Prevent MacBooks From Being Damaged by Third-Party Non-Compliant Docks

Thursday February 25, 2021 10:07 am PST by
Apple today released macOS Big Sur 11.2.2, the fourth update to the macOS Big Sur operating system that launched in November. macOS Big Sur 11.2.2 comes two weeks after the release of macOS Big Sur 11.2.1, a bug fix update. The new ‌‌‌‌macOS Big Sur‌‌‌ 11.2.2‌ update can be downloaded for free on all eligible Macs using the Software Update section of System Preferences....
flat mbp 14 inch feature yellow

Redesigned 14-Inch MacBook Pro Expected to Feature Brighter Mini-LED Display With Slimmer Bezels and More

Thursday February 25, 2021 7:48 am PST by
Apple plans to unveil new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models with Mini-LED-backlit displays in the second half of this year, according to industry sources cited by Taiwanese supply chain publication DigiTimes. The report claims that Radiant Opto-Electronics will be the exclusive supplier of the Mini-LED backlight units, while Quanta Computer is said to be tasked with final assembly of the...
Top Stories 47 Feature copy

Top Stories: MacBook Pro, iMac, and AirPods Rumors, macOS 11.2.2, MagSafe Wallet Revisited

Saturday February 27, 2021 6:00 am PST by
March is right around the corner, and that means our first good opportunity for Apple product launches in 2021 as the company frequently has significant launches in March or April each year. We're hearing rumors about MacBook Pro, iMac, AirPods, and more, although many of these will be coming out at different times over the course of the year. This week also saw a macOS update to address a ...
maxresdefault

HomeKit Essentials Worth Checking Out

Saturday February 27, 2021 7:05 am PST by
HomeKit was slow to take off after its 2014 launch, but now that it's been around for seven years, there are hundreds of HomeKit products available, ranging from doorbells and speakers to TVs, lights, and cameras. In our latest YouTube video, we rounded up some of our favorite HomeKit products that we find most useful. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. HomePod...
apple store macarthur center

Apple Store at MacArthur Center in Virginia Permanently Closing Following Years of Safety Issues at Shopping Mall

Thursday February 25, 2021 4:45 pm PST by
Apple today indicated that its retail store at the MacArthur Center shopping mall in Norfolk, Virginia will be permanently closing after over 14 years of business, although an exact closure date has yet to be announced by the company. Apple has assured that it will be offering all employees at the store other positions within Apple, and said that it looks forward to continuing to serve...
jon prosser imac 2021colors

Prosser: 2021 iMac to Come in Five Colors, Apple Silicon Mac Pro to Resemble 'Stacked' Mac Minis

Wednesday February 24, 2021 7:26 am PST by
Hit-and-miss leaker Jon Prosser has today alleged that the upcoming 2021 iMac models will offer five color options, mirroring the colors of the fourth-generation iPad Air, and revealed a number of additional details about the Mac Pro with Apple Silicon. In a new video on YouTube channel FrontPageTech, Prosser explained that the redesigned iMacs will come featuring options for Silver, Space ...
apple refurbished m1 mac mini

Apple Begins Selling Refurbished M1 Mac Mini

Thursday February 25, 2021 6:42 pm PST by
Apple today began selling certified refurbished Mac mini models with the M1 chip for the first time in the United States and Canada, with prices discounted by approximately 15 percent compared to brand new models as usual. For example, a refurbished Mac mini with the M1 chip, 256GB of SSD storage, and 16GB of unified memory is available for $759, compared to $899 brand new. Other custom...
mac mini developer transition kit photo feature

Apple Requiring Developers to Return DTK Mac Minis by March 31

Friday February 26, 2021 3:57 pm PST by
Apple today sent out emails to developers who are in possession of a Developer Transition Kit, asking them to return the machines by March 31. The Developer Transition Kits are Mac minis with A12Z chips that Apple provided for development purposes ahead of the release of the M1 Macs. Apple in the emails provided developers with shipping instructions, and plans to begin collecting the DTKs...
m1 mac mini

M1 Mac Users Report Excessive SSD Wear

Tuesday February 23, 2021 7:07 am PST by
Over the past week, some M1 Mac users have been reporting alarming SSD health readings, suggesting that these devices are writing extraordinary amounts of data to their drives (via iMore). Across Twitter and the MacRumors forums, users are reporting that M1 Macs are experiencing extremely high drive writes over a short space of time. In what appear to be the most severe cases, M1 Macs are sai...