Spotify still hasn’t added AirPlay 2 support to its iOS app — but despite the delay, it’s still “working to make [it] a reality,” the company tells The Verge. Some doubt was cast on AirPlay 2 inclusion when MacRumors spotted a forum post where a Spotify forum moderator claimed that “audio driver compatibility issues” might mean the feature wouldn’t be added for the foreseeable future. Spotify now claims that’s wrong.
The Verge received the following statement from Spotify regarding AirPlay 2:
A post on one of Spotify’s Community pages contained incomplete information regarding our plans for AirPlay2. Spotify will support AirPlay2 and we’re working to make that a reality.
AirPlay 2, added as part of iOS 11 update, introduced multiroom audio, Siri voice control, and fairly broad support across a wide swath of speakers, televisions, and streaming services. It was a real first for Apple’s “casting” feature, which had previously been somewhat poorly supported outside of Apple’s own devices.
Spotify has its own way to get audio from its service to other devices in the form of Spotify Connect, but considering Spotify already supports Google Cast, skipping Apple’s newest streaming protocol would seem like an odd omission. As MacRumors notes, Apple provides a seemingly simple four step developer document explaining how to enable the feature. However, developer Marco Arment points out that the fourth step (adopting a new API that supports enhanced buffering) is a bigger hurdle than it appears.
…and that new API:— Marco Arment (@marcoarment) August 6, 2021
- is barely documented
- has no public sample code
- is full of major gotchas
- can’t change speeds seamlessly
- doesn’t provide precise timing
- requires much more complex logic
- is less efficient, which can cause background CPU-overage terminations
But add in that Spotify has a less-than-friendly relationship with Apple, even going as far as filing an antitrust complaint and publicly calling it a bully, and a choice to not prioritize incorporating AirPlay 2 makes even more sense. It’s good that it’s still happening, but for any Spotify subscriber on iOS, it’s hard to not feel like you’re caught in the crossfire between two tech giants on the outs.
Update August 6th, 6:47PM ET: Changed headline and added statement from Spotify confirming it is working on AirPlay2 support.