Spotify stock took a tumble Monday as Apple and Amazon both announced they’re offering millions of lossless songs to subscribers at no additional charge.
Lossless audio maintains CD-quality sound in small files sizes, allowing listeners to hear songs ‘the way the artists created them in the studio,’ Apple said.
Apple Music will add some 20 million lossless tracks in June, the company said, with 75 million available by the end of the year.
Amazon, which launched its lossless-quality Amazon Music HD in 2019, will no longer charge Amazon Music Unlimited subscribers for the service.
In the wake of the announcements Spotify stock dipped nearly 3 percent today, continuing a decline of more than 30 percent in the last month.
The popular music streamer is still playing catch-up with high-def sound: Its lossless streaming tier, HiFi, won’t debut until later this year.
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Starting in June, Apple Music will offer subscribers CD-quality lossless audio for no additional charge. Apple promises 75 million lossless songs by year’s end
In a release, Apple said Apple Music’s lossless tier will start at CD quality, which is 16 bit at 44.1 kHz, and go up to 24 bit at 48 kHz.
Hi-resolution lossless quality is also available at 24 bit at 192 kHz, but subscribers will need a digital-to-analog converter or other external component to experience it, according to The Verge.
In addition, Apple Music purchases won’t be available in lossless quality and subscribers won’t be able to upgrade owned tracks to lossless audio with the paid iTunes Match service.
To access lossless audio on Apple Music, subscribers need to load the most recent version of the app and go to the ‘Settings’ tab and select ‘Music’ and then ‘Audio Quality.’
Apple also unveiled Spatial Audio, an immersive multidimensional sound that makes songs fell like they’re coming ‘from all around and from above.’ Available tracks—including releases from J Balvin and Ariana Grande—will be marked with a badge
You can then select a resolution for WiFi or cellular connection, or download the song direction.
Apple also today unveiled Spatial Audio, which uses Dolby Atmos technology to envelop listeners in immersive multidimensional sound experience so the music feels like it comes ‘from all around and from above.’
Oliver Schusser, vice president of Apple Music and Beats, called Spatial Audio Apple Music’s ‘biggest advancement ever in sound quality.’
‘Listening to a song in Dolby Atmos is like magic,’ Schusser said. ‘The music comes from all around you and sounds incredible.’
Dolby Atmos tracks will play by default on all AirPods and Beats headphones with an H1 or W1 chip, as well as through the latest iPhone, iPad and Mac speakers.
Tracks available in Dolby Atmos—including releases from J Balvin, Ariana Grande, Maroon 5, Kacey Musgraves, and The Weeknd—will be marked with a badge.
Apple Music will also curate special Dolby Atmos playlists.
Amazon has announced it will stop charging Amazon Music Unlimited subscribers for its lossless-audio streaming tier, Amazon Music HD
‘I always want to be a step ahead and I think this is one of those steps,’ said ‘Mi Gente’ singer J Balvin. ‘Hearing myself and my music in Dolby Atmos for the first time, it was just crazy, it blew my mind, it’s indescribable.’
Not to be outdone, Amazon also announced Monday it will begin offering its lossless-audio streaming tier, Amazon Music HD, to Amazon Music Unlimited subscribers at no additional cost.
Launched in 2019, Amazon Music HD already offers some 70 million lossless-quality songs.
A subscription to Amazon Music Unlimited runs $9.99 a month, or $7.99 a month for Prime customers.
Apple Music is also $9.99 monthly, with lossless audio also available to $4.99 student memberships and $14.99 family plans, which include six memberships.
In February, Spotify announced it would launch its own lossless streaming tier, HiFi, later this year in select markets.
HiFi will offer music ‘in CD-quality, lossless audio format to your device and Spotify Connect-enabled speakers,’ the company said, ‘which means fans will be able to experience more depth and clarity while enjoying their favorite tracks.’
The company hasn’t announced pricing plans for HiFi or how many songs will be made available initially.
A High Fidelity (HiFi) subscription with Tidal costs $19.99 per month, though there is a $9.99 rate for students and $11.99 for first responders and members of the military.