14 (more) Apple Music tips

Off to a great start – most people love it, some slam it and competitors grouse about it, here are some hints to make better use of it.

Apple, Apple Music, iTunes, iOS, streaming services, Spotify, iPhone, IPad, iTunes, Beats


You can play Beats One radio through AirPlay speakers from an iOS device, but you must direct audio from your Mac to your AirPlay speakers in audio settings, for some reason.


Apple’s recently updated GarageBand lets artists publish work directly to Apple Music Connect from the iOS app. I hope this feature will eventually be extended to OS X and Logic as I imagine many artists may chop out the occasional pre-release track when it does.


Some Apple Music users were unhappy Apple chose to automatically sign them up to follow any artist they had in their collection. You can unfollow artists pretty easily – tap ‘accounts’ and choose ‘Following’ to edit those you follow. You can also toggle the automatically follow setting on or off here. To find more acts to follow tap, "Find More Artists and Curators" which will recommend some.


Some Apple Music users will have to pay close attention to their data allowances when streaming content. Some carriers may be more forgiving: T-Mobile CEO, John Legere hints may be able to stream without hurting your data allowance using Apple Music and his network.


Apple will quietly add new DJs to the Beats One roster.


How will you monitor music you add to your local collection using the ‘Add to Library’ tool? Mac users should create a new Smart Playlist enabling,‘Match the following rule,’ and set this to ‘iCloud Status’ ‘is’ ‘Apple Music’ and leave Live Updating checked. Now they will be easy to find.

iCloud DRM

[UPDATED] iMore has strongly refuted claims that when iCloud Music Library ingests a track without DRM (such as one you own and took from CD) it will replace it with a DRM version of the song if it has one available. Here is one reading of why this happens but please back up your library before enabling iCloud Music Library. However, I have faith in the people at iMore and anticipate these DRM claims will (eventually) turn out to be a storm in a teacup.

iCloud Music Library problems

Some claim enabling iCloud Music Library can cause some songs, playlists or artwork to disappear. TechRadar has clear and extensive advice on a short-term fix here.


Apple Music gets to know the music you like. Not only does it ask about your personal preferences when you start to use it, but when you tap the heart button while playing a track, or download a song for offline playback, the recommendation system tracks this. It also tracks when you play songs in full, but not when you skip tracks. The more you use Apple Music the better its recommendations become.


iOS users can get song lyrics to current tracks using Musixmatch app, as spotted by MacStories. Install the app, enable Notification Center widgets and play a song in Music – lyrics will be available.

Offline playback

You can save content for offline playback. You must turn on iCloud Music Library (see above). Once it’s enabled you will be able to download content for offline playback by tapping the triple dots to the right of the content name. This invokes a menu in which you’ll find Make Available Offline (iOS) or Add to My Music (iTunes) options. This music will be available on your device for as long as you maintain your subscription.


You can customize Apple Music on iOS using Restrictions (Settings>General>Restrictions). Here you may uncheck Apple Music Connect to remove Connect; or visit Settings>Music to disable Show Apple Music.


You can request tracks from Beats One using numbers listed here.


Don’t miss this interesting interview with Trent Reznor. “It’s kind of a miracle to think that a device in your pocket can play pretty much any song that the world has ever created,” he says.

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