watchOS 9 Breaks Spotify Streaming, Apple Watch Users Urged Not to Update

Apple Watch owners who stream music from Spotify have been urged not to update their devices to watchOS 9 because of a bug that causes streaming on the watch to stop working.

spotify offline playback apple watch
Spotify has been sending its users emails warning of the problem, which began to emerge soon after Apple released watchOS 9 to the public on Monday. The message from the company reads:

Apple WatchOS 9 introduced a bug that causes Spotify streaming on the Apple Watch to stop working. We urge Spotify Apple Watch users not to install the WatchOS 9 update until Apple has implemented a fix for the issue. Users who are already affected can instead download their content to their Apple Watch and listen offline or stream from their phones.

According to user reports, streaming on Apple Watch stops working within the first minute, and yet the track progress bar continues to move, just minus audio. The problem occurs on both Wi-Fi and cellular connection, but there is no issue with Spotify media downloaded to Apple Watch.

Apple seeded the first beta of watchOS 9.1 to developers on Wednesday, and there are unverified reports that the point release fixes the Spotify streaming problem. However, Apple does not mention the issue in its release notes so users won't know for sure until Apple rolls out the next Apple Watch update to the public.

(Thanks, Henrik!)

Related Roundup: Apple Watch Series 9
Tag: Spotify
Buyer's Guide: Apple Watch (Caution)

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Top Rated Comments

ffej207 Avatar
22 months ago
I've been a loyal Spotify user for years now, and there is no evidence that Apple is doing anything "to them." They want to cry and complain about Apple keeping them from innovating, but when Apple gives them the keys, they just screw stuff up. Spotify has NEVER worked exactly right on Apple products, and rather than hiring a competent development team, they just cry to the press about Apple keeping them down. It's incredibly frustrating.

As someone mentioned above.. there's been months of betas available. Did they not do any internal testing?
Score: 44 Votes (Like | Disagree)
djcerla Avatar
22 months ago
Because the beta wasn’t available at all.
Score: 35 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Feek Avatar
22 months ago
Corrected headline:

[HEADING=2]Spotify have not updated their software to work with watchOS 9[/HEADING]
Score: 33 Votes (Like | Disagree)
JUiCEJamie Avatar
22 months ago
So Spotify haven’t fixed the bug since Watch OS 9 beta came out in JUNE?!

Now they want to cry wolf? Please
Score: 23 Votes (Like | Disagree)
stocklen Avatar
22 months ago
For goodness sake.... Spotify has had access to the betas right from the start and had over 3 months to test and fix this... just like every other apple 3rd party developer.

Why do nothing, and then blame apple and tell customers to not update their watches?

They've had more than enough time. Blame them not apple
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
neuropsychguy Avatar
22 months ago

How does Apple with all of it’s resources & beta testers not catch this before the final public release?
You mean how does Spotify with all of its resources and beta testers not catch this and tell people a couple weeks ago not to upgrade because of issues? This is more of a Spotify issue than an Apple issue, although Apple is likely at least partially to blame.

Edit: Why I say it's not fully Apple's fault. Here's an example. I use Bluetooth to connect my iPhone to my car's audio system. If I'm listening to an audiobook in Audible at a speed faster than 1X, everything works well. If I listen to an audiobook at faster than 1X using another app, the material plays but there is no sound until I put the playback speed back to 1X (Libby also works but any others that I've tried do not). I've contacted the devs of these other apps and they didn't want to try and fix the issue because my experience is possibly just an outlier (although it doesn't affect only my phone but does all other phones that connect to my car), although it's not just my car because I've tried this with other cars including various rental cars over the years and they all have the same issue. Audible and Libby can play books back at more than 1X but other apps cannot.

Is that the car manufacturer's fault? Not really, because it works for some apps. It's primarily the developers' faults for the other apps. This is like the Spotify situation, although again, Apple is at least partially to blame.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)