HomePod Now Counts Toward Apple Music Device Streaming Limits for Single Memberships, Apple Encouraging Family Upgrades

When it launched, Apple's HomePod smart speaker did not count toward an Apple Music subscription's device streaming limit. This meant that single-user Apple Music subscribers could stream one song on an iOS device and another on HomePod simultaneously, without one stream ending the other. Recently, this ability has disappeared for many Apple Music users, who are now unable to stream music on both HomePod and an iOS device at the same time.


While single memberships transition to this method of HomePod streaming, Apple Music family memberships will be able to continue to stream multiple songs on both iOS devices and HomePod without any of the streams getting interrupted. Moreover, when HomePod interrupts music streaming on an iPhone, a new pop-up box on iOS displays an option for single membership subscribers to upgrade to an Apple Music family plan. The box explains that up to 5 other people can stream their music at once using the family plan.

According to a tipster, posts on Reddit, and a few accounts on the MacRumors forums dating back to last summer, the timeline for this change is murky. As far back as August 2018, MacRumors user cczhu mentioned not being able to play music on both HomePod and Apple TV simultaneously. Similar experiences were shared later in the year, with HomePod counting towards an account's device streaming limit when playing Apple Music on other Apple products, and now it appears that this tweak has hit many more users.

Over the weekend, a few users on r/HomePod posted similar stories. According to Reddit user veteran_t, on Saturday they noticed music playing on their iPhone paused a playlist on their HomePod. Deciding to speak with Apple Support, a senior specialist told the user that any claims about HomePod not counting toward an Apple Music subscription's device streaming limit are third party quotes. The specialist continued by saying Apple never advertised this feature and that veteran_t's HomePod is now working in the originally intended way.

(Thanks, Jason!)

Related Roundup: HomePod
Buyer's Guide: HomePod (Caution)

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
20 months ago

Apple Encouraging Family Upgrades

Or: Apple Discouraging HomePod Purchases
Score: 52 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
20 months ago
With the high price of the Homepod and limited functionality of Siri and now the now even more limiting restriction to use this beautiful and great sounding device for music, it seems like Apple keeps drilling nails into coffins.

What's happening to Apple these days? They are not listening to the public on price (recent news of decline of sales, poor china growth) and they are super slow to advance their technology (Siri vs the rest). Tim Cook apparently wakes up and reads the Apple customer news every morning. I hope he's reading this thread.

Apple: great products yes but nobody can afford them vs the cheaper and vastly more expansive options of other companies. Now technology is catching up, what Apple is holding onto (quality) is slowly not becoming relevant anymore.
Score: 40 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
20 months ago
This sounds like yet another EXCELLENT reason not to invest in a HomePod.
Score: 36 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
20 months ago
HomePod owners are not going to be happy about this. Commiserations to them both.
Score: 35 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
20 months ago
So Apple released something that "didn't" work as intended and suddenly we, the consumer who have paid for devices and services, are now suppose to be ok with this?

Dear User, we eff'ed up so now you need to pay another $60 a year for being able to stream on multiple devices. Sincerely, Apple.

This sounds like a response to the poor performance of the newest releases of the iPhone not performing to where Apple thought they would. This is just poor execution by Apple, for at least the 10th time under Tim "Bottom Line" Cook.
Score: 33 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
20 months ago
Need to increase service revenue.
Score: 23 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

Apple Warns Against Closing MacBooks With a Cover Over the Camera

Friday July 10, 2020 11:12 am PDT by
Apple this month published a support document that warns customers against closing their Mac notebooks with a cover over the camera as it can lead to display damage. Image via Reddit Apple says that the clearance between the display and the keyboard is designed to very tight tolerances, which can be problematic. Covering the camera can also cause issues with automatic brightness and True Tone....

iPhone Users Who Experienced 'Batterygate' Can Now File to Receive Around $25 Settlement From Apple

Monday July 13, 2020 6:50 am PDT by
Earlier this year, Apple agreed to settle a U.S. class action lawsuit that accused the company of "secretly throttling" older iPhone models. Now, eligible iPhone owners are beginning to be notified about their legal rights and options. Under the proposed settlement, Apple will provide a cash payment of approximately $25 to each eligible iPhone owner who submits a claim, with its total payout ...

Apple Moving Forward on Semitransparent Lenses for Upcoming AR Headset

Friday July 10, 2020 7:24 am PDT by
Apple and Foxconn have reached a key milestone in the development of Apple's long-rumored augmented reality headset, with the semitransparent lenses for the device moving from prototype to trial production, reports The Information. Apple is developing the lenses on a single production line at a Foxconn factory in Chengdu in southwestern China, where most of Apple’s iPad production is...

Arm-Intel-PowerPC Universal Binaries Are Possible

Saturday July 11, 2020 1:42 pm PDT by
Casual MacRumors visitors may not realize that we have a very active PowerPC forum where users discuss issues related to PowerPC Macs that have not been produced since 2006. Threads range from hardware upgrades and software options to nostalgia: Photo by AphoticD Apple's recently announced transition to Apple Silicon (Arm) based Macs raised some interesting questions about future support...

Possible 'iPhone 12' Battery Certifications Suggest Lower Capacities Than iPhone 11 Series

Monday July 13, 2020 4:22 am PDT by
MySmartPrice has spotted certifications for three new Apple batteries that it believes could be for the upcoming iPhone 12 lineup, despite them being less capacitive than the batteries in the current iPhone 11 series. The batteries are identified with the model numbers A2471, A2431, and A2466, and appear on Safety Korea, China's 3C, and the Danish agency UL Demko. Apple is expected to...

Leaker: 'iPhone 12 Pro' to Come With 6GB of RAM

Friday July 10, 2020 1:59 am PDT by
Later this year, Apple is expected to release four OLED iPhones in three display sizes, including 5.4, 6.7, and two 6.1-inch models. Rumors suggest the 6.7-inch iPhone and one 6.1-inch model will be higher-end devices, and now leaker @L0vetodream has corroborated previous rumors about the internal specs of Apple's upcoming lineup. Rumors suggest Apple will use 5-nanometer A14 chips in its...

Kuo: Apple Silicon Macs to Include 13-inch MacBook Pro and MacBook Air This Year, 14.1-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro Models Next Year

Friday July 10, 2020 2:58 am PDT by
At last month's WWDC, Apple officially announced that its Mac computers will be transitioned from Intel x86 to homegrown Apple Silicon chips. Apple said it plans to deliver the first Apple Silicon Mac by the end of the year and complete the transition in about two years. According to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, a 13.3-inch MacBook Pro with a form factor similar to the current 13.3-inch...

Google to 'Dramatically' Improve Chrome Impact on Mac Battery Life

Sunday July 12, 2020 1:56 pm PDT by
Google will address long-standing battery life issues, particularly on Mac devices, reports The Wall Street Journal. Chrome will improve "tab throttling" by better prioritizing active tabs and limiting resource drain from tabs open in the background. This is said to have a "dramatic impact on battery and performance." Google has reportedly been performing early tests on Mac laptops in...

Top Stories: iOS 14 Public Beta, iPhone 12 Size Comparison, 14-Inch MacBook Pro Rumors

Saturday July 11, 2020 6:00 am PDT by
After one round of developer beta testing, Apple unleashed iOS and iPadOS 14 to a wider audience this week, opening it up to members of the public beta program. There are lots of changes and new features to check out, but as with any beta, be careful about installing it on your main devices. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Other major stories this week included our ...

Apple Shares Humorous 'Working-From-Home Thing' Video

Monday July 13, 2020 9:31 am PDT by
Apple today shared a funny video focused on the problems that people working from home have to deal with, including noisy children, chaotic schedules, communication issues, and more. The video focuses on showing off Apple products and their capabilities that can be useful when working from home, such as the ability to scan a document with an iPhone, mark up a PDF, Siri Reminders, and more.The...