The way you can listen to music on an Apple Watch is determined by the model and version of the operating system. You can listen to playlists generated on your iPhone on any Apple Watch running watchOS 4.1 or higher. You can also listen to music using apps such as Spotify, Pandora, and iHeartRadio, as well as Apple Music (if you have a subscription).
An Apple Watch Series 3 or newer running watchOS 4.1 or higher can do all that, but it can also connect to Apple Radio and any music you’ve synced via iCloud. Music can also be streamed directly from the cloud on Series 3 and later models. Let’s have a look at the various methods to listen to music on your Apple Watch.
Add music to your Apple Watch
When you add your music to the Apple Watch, you can listen to it even if you don’t have access to your iPhone.
Using the Apple Watch app on your iPhone, you can add individual playlists and albums to your Apple Watch. If you have an Apple Music subscription, you may also add music to your Apple Watch via the Music app.
If you’re an Apple Music user, you don’t have to pick specific music to put on your Apple Watch. The music you’ve recently listened to is immediately added to your playlist.
Here’s how to add music to the Apple Watch using your iPhone.
1. On your iPhone, open the Apple Watch app.
2. Go to “My Watch” and tap “Music”.
3. Tap “Add Music” under “Playlists & Albums.”
4. To sync music to your Apple Watch, choose albums and playlists.
5. Your music will be added when your Apple Watch is plugged in and close to your phone.
If you have an Apple Music subscription, you can use your Apple Watch to add music. Here’s how to do it.
- On your Apple Watch, open the Music app.
- Then go to the music you wish to add by tapping Library, Listen Now, or Search.
- Tap the More option, then Add to Library to add a playlist or album to your library.
- Tap the More button again, then tap Download to download the music to your Apple Watch.
How to play music on your Apple Watch
On Apple Watch, use the Music app to select and play music. If you’re an Apple Music subscriber, you can listen to music stored on your Apple Watch, stream music from Apple Music, and control music on your iPhone
Open the Music app on your Apple Watch after connecting Bluetooth headphones or speakers, and then choose one of the following:
- Use your Apple Watch to listen to music on your iPhone: Scroll through album artwork with the Digital Crown, then tap a playlist or album to play it.
- Choose which songs to add to Apple Watch using the Apple Watch app on your iPhone.
- Play music from your personal collection: Tap Library, then select a playlist, artist, album, or song from the drop-down menu. Tap Downloaded, then music to listen to music that has been downloaded to your Apple Watch.
- Request songs from Apple Music (you’ll need an Apple Music subscription): Raise your wrist and ask Siri for a specific artist, song, album, genre, or even a lyric from a song.
Other apps you can use to listen to music on your Apple Watch
There are numerous apps that allow you to listen to music on your Apple Watch. Below you’ll find a description of the most popular apps for the Apple Watch and everything you need to know about using them on your watch.
Install the Spotify app on your smartwatch and launch it from there. When you sign up for a free Spotify account, you’ll be presented with a playlist of recently played music. Select the playlist or radio station that you wish to listen to. When you get to the player screen, you’ll be able to pause the music, skip to the next track, or go back to the previous track. You can also play the music using a Bluetooth device of your own choosing.
A paid Spotify Premium membership allows you to listen to any music you want in any order, listen without being interrupted by ads, and play any song in any order you choose. To switch between the music list and the player screen, simply swipe left or right.
You can pause, play, and rewind music on the Apple Watch, just as you would on Spotify for the iPhone or desktop. This is true whether you’re listening on your phone, Bluetooth speakers, or even gaming consoles.
You’ll need an Apple Watch Series 3 or later with watchOS 6 or higher, as well as an iPhone with iOS 13 or higher, to use the Pandora app on your Apple Watch.
You can listen to Pandora on your iPhone using your watch as a remote control, or on your watch directly. Select Watch or Phone from the “Playing from” setting on the main screen. To listen to a station, tap the Stations entry and choose one.
You can download songs to listen to offline if you have a paid subscription to Pandora Plus, Pandora Premium, or Pandora Premium Family. On your iPhone, use the Pandora app to download music. To access your downloaded music, hit the Download entry in the Watch app.
The iHeartRadio Apple Watch App makes it possible for users to listen to their favorite shows and music wherever they are with ease. With this app, users get access to features such as Search, Recently Played (which covers stations, podcasts, and playlists), Add to Playlist, and more.
The software can be used as a remote control for the iOS companion app, but it also works without your iPhone. Even if you forget your phone, you can still listen to your favorite podcasts and music.
Deezer’s Apple Watch app now includes offline capability, joining a long list of other music services that have done the same.
Using Deezer, you can add or remove playlists from your music library and have them automatically download to your Apple Watch. If you don’t have a favorite playlist, you can make one by searching for music and adding them to an existing one.
With the Apple Watch app on your iPhone, you can simply shuffle the songs you’ve downloaded. You can also see how much storage space you have left in the Settings app on your Apple Watch.
Music streaming subscription service Tidal has a database of around 70 million songs, some of which are exclusives. A Tidal subscription lets you access and listen to Tidal music online, as well as play Tidal cache files offline, all in lossless High Fidelity audio quality.
Subscribers can stream music directly to their Apple Watch or download it for offline listening when they don’t have access to an iPhone. A Series 3 or later Apple Watch running watchOS 7.1 is required to use the Tidal app.