Today, May 17, Apple officially unveiled several new features for its music streaming service Apple Music, which have been discussed for so long on the Internet. Firstly, now everyone will be able to listen to their favorite tracks in high quality (Lossless Audio) – starting from 16 bits at 44.1 kHz and ending at 24 bits at 48 kHz. It is worth noting that the service developers use their own codec called Apple Lossless Audio Codec (ALAC). Moreover, there is no need to wait until the tracks are loaded in the new quality – Apple said that Lossless Audio quality support has already been implemented for the entire Apple Music library.
At the moment, users have access to 75 million songs in high-quality Lossless Audio sound. Secondly, for true audiophiles, developers from Apple have implemented support for the Hi-Resolution Lossless function – it boasts up to 24-bit quality at 192 kHz. But, on the other hand, to listen to music in such high quality, the user needs to connect an additional DAC via USB – otherwise, the smartphone will not be able to produce the required sound quality. In addition, not all songs are now presented in the Hi-Res format – the entire library of tracks that support this function consists of 20 million tracks. The rest are promised to be added by the end of this year.
Thirdly, now Apple Music supports spatial audio – for this, they have implemented support for the popular Dolby Atmos technology. The company said that the new technology helps to immerse yourself in what is happening when watching movies or listening to music, for example, as the soundstage is more expansive. Unfortunately, Dolby Atmos support is only available on AirPods and Beats with an H1 or W1 chip and iPhone 12 speakers, iPad Pro 2021, and Mac computers with a proprietary M1 processor. However, at the release of this function, only a few thousand songs will support spatial audio – they promise to expand the media library shortly.
To activate playback in higher quality, Apple Music users need to go to the streaming service settings in the “Audio Quality” section and activate the desired mode. All service fans will enable Lossless quality on operating systems iOS 14.6, iPadOS 14.6, macOS 11.4, and tvOS 14.6 or newer in June of this year.