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Apple Music will give you control over audio quality in iOS 9

Apple Music will give you control over audio quality in iOS 9

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One of the strangest decisions Apple made in creating Apple Music was the company's initial refusal to let users choose the audio quality that songs stream at. Eddy Cue has tweeted that quality varies depending on whether you're listening on Wi-Fi and cellular; presumably this means Apple Music streams at its maximum bitrate of 256kbps (AAC) when you're on a decent Wi-Fi network. But on a mobile network, what you're hearing could be at a lower quality — and there's currently no way to adjust it. Thankfully, Apple Insider reports that'll be changing with the release of iOS 9.

In the third developer beta of the new software, released earlier today, Apple has added a toggle to the Music settings menu that lets you listen at "high quality" on cellular networks no matter how strong your signal may be. Right beneath the option, Apple warns that enabling it will "use more cellular data and songs may take longer to start playing." Interestingly there's nothing about pauses or buffering in that text, so Apple Music may cache enough of a song to ensure there are no random interruptions once it starts playing.

Update: Read the iOS 9 review.

Apple has confirmed it will release a public beta of iOS 9 sometime in July, giving users the chance to turn on this feature during the initial trial of Apple Music. Of course, the "high quality on cellular" setting could vanish before that happens if Apple hears too many complaints from developers testing the software. But some people wouldn't mind risking the occasional delay if it meant getting the best possible listening experience, and this is something that most every other streaming service already offers. The question is can they really tell the difference?