(Pocket-lint) - Apple has confirmed that its entire music catalogue of more than 75 million songs will be available in high quality lossless audio using ALAC (Apple Lossless Audio Codec) up to 24 bit at 192 kHz. What's more, lossless audio is available at no extra cost than a standard Apple Music subscription.
That's a hit to the head for other vendors who already charge more for high-quality streaming, as well as Spotify which is yet to release its HiFi tier.
UPDATE: Amazon Music Unlimited has now also announced its HD tier is now also available at no extra cost.
Spatial Audio with support for Dolby Atmos will enable immersive surround sound for those listening to Apple Music on appropriate devices.
Apple says that by default, Apple Music will automatically play Dolby Atmos tracks on all AirPods and Beats headphones with an H1 or W1 chip, as well as the built-in speakers in the latest versions of iPhone, iPad, and Mac devices. Notice that list doesn't include the HomePod range.
Apple Music will apparently be adding new Dolby Atmos tracks constantly and will be curating a special set of Dolby Atmos playlists. Albums that are available in Dolby Atmos will have a badge on their detail page. "Thousands of songs" will be available at launch. Tidal previously was supported Atmos Music along with Amazon Music HD with Echo Studio.
To start listening to Lossless Audio, subscribers using the latest version of Apple Music can turn it on in Settings > Music > Audio Quality. Here, you can choose different resolutions for different connections such as cellular, Wi-Fi, or for download. Apple Music’s Lossless tier starts at CD quality, which is 16 bit at 44.1 kHz (kilohertz), and goes up to 24 bit at 48 kHz and is playable natively on Apple devices. For audiophiles, Apple Music also offers Hi-Resolution Lossless all the way up to 24 bit at 192 kHz.
Corrections - [17/05/2021] Updated to reflect Amazon's change to its HD tier.