Apple Music Launching Spatial Audio With Dolby Atmos and Lossless Audio in June at No Extra Cost
Apple today announced that Apple Music will be gaining support for Spatial Audio with Dolby Atmos at no additional cost starting in June.
At launch, Apple Music subscribers will have access to thousands of songs in Spatial Audio from artists like J Balvin, Gustavo Dudamel, Ariana Grande, Maroon 5, Kacey Musgraves, The Weeknd, and many others. Apple says this feature will provide a "revolutionary, immersive audio experience that enables artists to mix music so the sound comes from all around and from above."
Apple Music subscribers will also be able to listen to more than 75 million songs in Lossless Audio at no additional cost:
Apple Music will also make its catalog of more than 75 million songs available in Lossless Audio. Apple uses ALAC (Apple Lossless Audio Codec) to preserve every single bit of the original audio file. This means Apple Music subscribers will be able to hear the exact same thing that the artists created in the studio.
Apple says 20 million songs will be available in Lossless Audio at launch, with the full 75 million songs available by the end of the year.
Apple Music's standard Lossless tier will start at "CD quality," which is 16 bit at 44.1 kHz, and goes up to 24 bit at 48 kHz, according to Apple. Apple Music will also offer Hi-Res Lossless up to 24 bit at 192 kHz.
The next dimension of sound is coming. Announcing #SpatialAudio, featuring #DolbyAtmos. pic.twitter.com/np8UjNusmF — Apple Music (@AppleMusic) May 17, 2021
By default, Apple Music will automatically play Dolby Atmos tracks on all AirPods and Beats headphones with an H1 or W1 chip, as well as the built-in speakers in the latest versions of the iPhone, iPad, and Mac, according to Apple.
Apple Music will be getting new Dolby Atmos tracks constantly and will offer a curated selection of Dolby Atmos playlists, according to Apple. Dolby Atmos albums will have a badge on their detail page for easy discovery.
Spatial Audio and Lossless Audio will be available on iOS 14.6, iPadOS 14.6, macOS 11.4, and tvOS 14.6 or later.
Top Rated Comments
For now, Atmos is specifically mentioned ('https://www.apple.com/apple-music/') for HomePod as well. They don't specifically mention the HomePod for lossless.
Additionally, even with wireless headphones you can enjoy "lossless", i.e. an improvement in quality. Only what they call "Hi-Res Lossless" requires a DAC (like the dongle) and wired headphones to enjoy, which for the average audiophile is not some shocking news, and they were probably already exclusively using wired headphones anyways.
Atmos will automatically be selected when you use compatible Apple or Beats headphones, but as you can read in the "How can I listen to Dolby Atmos music?" quote, you can also enable this for other headphones if you happen to have a headphone that supports it.
Which Apple or Beats headphones are considered compatible?
These are the devices (plus HomePod) that are listed as compatible with Dolby Atmos:
And both Atmos and Lossless will become available with:
Hope this answers some recurring questions.
Can we stop badgering people that don't use Apple Music and instead are using their own library in iTunes?
I'm a happy AM user and don't use the iTunes library, but how ridiculous is it that people have to justify why they'd rather use their own catalogue of music or that they are being attacked for expressing their disappointment that the press release doesn't mention anything about an option to upgrade their music quality?
Let's keep it civil and respect everyone's choices.