Spotify has cleared up confusion around AirPlay 2 support for its iOS app. Last week, a representative from Spotify said that it wasn’t possible to add AirPlay 2 streaming support to Spotify for the foreseeable future due to audio driver compatibility issues. Now the company says it was a bit premature on its part to say that.
In a forum post, Spotify has clarified that the iOS app will add support for AirPlay 2 after all (via Engadget). It’s still not saying when we should expect the feature to become available, though. However, this confirmation provides much-needed clarity on the earlier statement, which made it look like Spotify had put the feature on indefinite hold.
A Spotify spokesperson provided the following statement to The Verge:
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 is the latest iteration of Apple’s proprietary wireless protocol. Think of it as a Google Cast but for Apple devices. AirPlay 2 was unveiled alongside iOS 11 at Apple’s WWDC event in 2017. The new version is a big step up over the original protocol, offering lower latency, multi-room support, streaming to stereo speakers, and Siri integration.
iPhone users have been requesting Spotify to add support for AirPlay 2 streaming for years — currently, the app only supports the old AirPlay protocol. As per Apple’s official documentation, adding support for AirPlay 2 in an app is a four-step process, requiring the app to set a flag, adding an AirPlay picker, respond to play/pause, and adopting a playback API to take advantage of enhanced buffering. However, as developer Macro Arment points out, it’s the fourth step, adding a new API to support fast streaming, that’s the main roadblock as Apple has provided very little documentation around that.
…and that new API:
– 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
— Marco Arment (@marcoarment) August 6, 2021
As mentioned above, Spotify hasn’t provided ETA on when we should expect AirPlay 2 streaming support to arrive on the Spotify iOS app. For now, all we know is that the company is “working to make [the AirPlay 2 feature] a reality.”