Apple Music is my preferred streaming music service, and I’ve tried them all. As I wrote a few months back, Spotify has its perks, but it falls short of being a powerful music streaming app because of its insistence on merging podcasts and music.
But with that being said, there’s one feature that Spotify (and even the Apple Music app on Android) has that Apple Music for iOS lacks: gapless playback.
Apple Music on Android added support for gapless playback way back in June of 2020… and the feature is still nowhere to be found in Apple Music for iOS. It’s supported with the Music app on macOS, including with Apple Music tracks and albums, but not in Apple Music for iOS.
Why is gapless playback important? Many albums are crafted in a way where gapless playback is essential. Ranging from Abbey Road by The Beatles to Coldplay’s latest release The Music of the Spheres, and countless more over the years, gapless playback is a crucial feature for listening to an album the way the artist intended.
I had a nine-hour roadtrip this past weekend, and the lack of gapless playback with Apple Music on iOS was incredibly noticeable and irritating, particularly when listening to the Hamilton soundtrack. Between every song, there was a noticeable multi-second gap… even though all of the songs are meant to flow together.
One thought that came to mind while I was on this drive was how Adele was able to get Spotify to ditch the “Shuffle” button for a “Play” button with the release of her latest album, 30. Adele explained in a tweet that artists create albums with track listing in mind, and Spotify defaulting to shuffling every album defeats that purpose.
We don’t create albums with so much care and thought into our track listing for no reason. Our art tells a story and our stories should be listened to as we intended. Thank you Spotify for listening.
To me, it seems like artists should be (and maybe are?) pushing Apple behind the scenes to add this feature. The lack of gapless playback support for Apple Music on iOS is a glaring omission that really does impact the integrity of albums. There’s also no support for crossfade
Now that WWDC 2022 is official, we know that we are just two months away from the announcement of iOS 16. Here’s hoping that gapless playback support for Apple Music is one of the new features included. What about you? Let us know down in the comments!
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