Spotify HiFi arriving later this year with lossless, CD-quality audio
Spotify has announced its plans for the launch of Spotify HiFi, which will ultimately allow lossless audio streaming.
Spotify claims that its new HiFi mode will enable audio ‘CD-quality’ on existing devices and speakers enabled by Spotify Connect. For the HiFi mode, the company did not go into further details on bit rate and codec. Currently, Spotify uses Ogg Vorbis for desktop and mobile applications, and AAC for web players.
For a while now, the company has been testing lossless audio, with select users since early 2017 being selected for A/B testing. It now joins, including Tidal, Amazon, Quobuz, and Deezer, an increasing number of services offering lossless audio. Most of these also offer high-resolution audio that exceeds the audio CD’s technical limits, which will benefit them if Spotify chooses only to limit itself to 16-bit/44.1kHz audio, as “CD quality” would imply.
Apple, which has not yet shown any interest in providing lossless audio, either through its Apple Music streaming service or its iTunes store, is notably missing from this list. This may well be why Spotify finally decided to roll out lossless audio support as it provides another differentiating factor against the rapidly growing alternative of Apple.
Unfortunately, at launch, Spotify HiFi will not be accessible to everyone. The company revealed that when it goes live some time later this year, it will roll out the feature only in select markets. This is probably not too surprising, however, for those who closely follow this industry, as the lossless levels of other streaming services have generally only been offered in select regions worldwide and it may be to blame for licencing agreements with labels.
5 Things to Know About Spotify HiFi
Artists and fans have told us that sound quality is important to them. We agree, and that’s why today at Stream On we announced Spotify HiFi.
Beginning later this year, Premium subscribers in select markets will be able to upgrade their sound quality to Spotify HiFi and listen to their favorite songs the way artists intended.
Read on for five things you need to know about our new high-quality music experience:
- High-quality music streaming is consistently one of the most requested new features by our users.
- Spotify HiFi will deliver music in CD-quality, lossless audio format to your device and Spotify Connect-enabled speakers, which means fans will be able to experience more depth and clarity while enjoying their favorite tracks.
- Ubiquity is at the core of everything we do at Spotify, and we’re working with some of the world’s biggest speaker manufacturers to make Spotify HiFi accessible to as many fans as possible through Spotify Connect.
- HiFi will be coupled with Spotify’s seamless user experience, building on our commitment to make sure users can listen to the music they love in the way they want to enjoy it.
- Spotify HiFi will begin rolling out in select markets later this year, and we will have more details to share soon.
Want to learn more? Listen as American singer-songwriter Billie Eilish and record producer FINNEAS speak about the importance of high-quality audio options for creators and fans.