Good news for music lovers! Apple has rolled out the Lossless Audio and Dolby Atmos options for all Apple Music subscribers in India. This comes a few weeks after Apple officially rolled out Lossless Audio and Dolby Atmos at the Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) this summer. As of today, the server-side update should enable these two options on compatible Apple iPhone, iPad as well as Apple TV 4K. Apple Music Lossless Audio and Dolby Atmos are available for free and you don’t need to pay extra over your existing Apple Music subscription. We try to answer all your questions about how it works, whether your iPhone supports it, how much does it cost and also, how to enable these options in the first place.
What Is Lossless Audio In Apple Music? Simply put, this is a much higher quality audio file that you will have access to, and the sort of detailing that you’d be able to hear on audio speakers that support lossless audio and high-res audio formats, will be unparalleled. These High-Res and Lossless audio files are also much larger in size, if you are to save them side by side a typical high quality audio file. Apple says that a three-minute music track would be around 6 MB when streamed or downloaded in High Quality Mode. The same duration music track in Lossless would be around 36 MB in size while the High-Resolution Lossless standard will take up as much as 145 MB for the same track.
What is Dolby Atmos Spatial Audio? This is much like surround sound for home theater systems, where you place speakers at different places in the room for a feeling of being enveloped by sound and the finer elements within it. Except that there are no static speakers placed around you and you get the same element of experience from headphones and earphones such as the Apple AirPods Max and the Apple AirPods Pro. Sound doesn’t come across as if you’re being fed unintuitive singular feeds of sound to your left and right ears. The added goodness here being that the headphones track your head movement and link back to the position of the source device—your iPhone or iPad. You will notice the sound gently shift in direction of where your iPhone sits, if you move your head around perceptibly.
Which iPhones, iPads And AirPods Support Dolby Atmos? Apple says that the iPhone XR or later (except the iPhone SE), iPad Pro 12.9-inch (3rd generation or later), iPad Pro 11-inch, iPad (6th generation or later), iPad Air (3rd generation or later) and iPad mini (5th generation) are compatible, as long as you’ve updated these to iOS 14.6 or iPadOS 14.6 respectively. Turn the spatial audio option on, and connect AirPods Pro or AirPods Max to listen to tracks in Dolby Atmos.
How Much Does Apple Music Cost? In India, Apple Music subscriptions start at Rs 49 per month for the Student plan (that also bundles Apple TV+), Rs 99 per month for the Individual Apple Music plan and Rs 149 per month for the Apple Music Family plan.
How Much Of My Apple Music Library Is Available With Lossless? Apple has already said that more than 20 million tracks are available in lossless audio quality with the entire catalogue of 75 million tracks being made available in lossless by the end of this year.
How Can I Listen To Lossless Audio On My iPhone? Go to Settings > Music on your iPhone or iPad and you’ll see First would be an option called Dolby Atmos. Tap on this and you can choose between Automatic, Always On or Off. Just below that would be another new option called Audio Quality. First, you need to toggle Lossless Audio and ensure it is set at green. Below that, you’ll see three options—cellular streaming, Wi-Fi Streaming and Downloads. You can choose from multiple streaming options for each of these, depending on what sort of quality and data usage you are okay with.
How Can I Listen To Lossless Audio On If I Use A Mac Or Apple TV? On A Mac, you can enable Apple Music Lossless Audio. Update Mac to macOS 11.4 > a wired connection to headphones, receivers or powered speakers > alternatively use built-in speakers > open Apple Music app > Click Menu bar > Select Preferences > Playback tab > Audio Quality > Lossless > Turn on or off. Your options here are Lossless for a maximum resolution of 24-bit/48 kHz or Hi-Res Lossless for a maximum resolution of 24-bit/192 kHz.
On an Apple TV 4K, you must update it to tvOS 14.6 > connect Apple TV 4K to compatible AV receiver with HDMI cable > Settings > Apps > Music > Audio Quality > Lossless > Turn on or off. Apple TV 4K currently doesn’t support Hi-Res Lossless and your option here will simply enable Lossless for a maximum resolution of 24-bit/48 kHz.
Can I Play Lossless Audio To Any Bluetooth Speaker? This is something you really must pay attention to. Bluetooth wireless streaming as a standard does not support lossless audio to be sent to a speaker or headphone from a phone, tablet or computing device. That is why even the AirPods, AirPods Pro and AirPods Max at present do not support Apple Lossless Audio. They do however are very capable of taking advantage of Dolby Atmos audio. For lossless audio to work, you’ll need a wired connection with any compatible speaker or headphone—you’ll know if it is labeled with Hi-Res capabilities.
Does Apple’s Lightning to 3.5 mm Headphone Jack Adapter Support Lossless? Apple says that Lightning to 3.5 mm Headphone Jack Adapter is designed to transmit audio from the iPhone’s Lightning connector. It contains a digital-to-analog converter that supports up to 24-bit/48 kHz lossless audio.
How Can I See Which Albums Or Songs Are Available In Dolby Atmos? If every song on an album is available in Dolby Atmos, you’ll see the Dolby Atmos badge on the album’s detail page. Some songs are available in Dolby Atmos only on a particular version of an album, in which case you’ll see the badge for those specific tracks.