As documented in its release notes, iOS 14.6 includes support for Apple Card Family and Podcasts subscriptions, two service enhancements that will go live once the release goes public. But iOS 14.6 includes several other noteworthy updates, including our first look at updated Music settings for the just-announced Dolby Atmos Spatial Audio and high-quality Lossless audio for Apple Music. The release also gives us our first look at the upcoming Beats Studio Buds, among other things. Watch our hands-on video walkthrough as we consider what’s new in iOS 14.6 RC.
Apple Music updates: Lossless and Dolby Atmos
The big news yesterday was Apple’s expected announcement regarding Lossless Audio quality in ALAC (Apple Lossless Audio Codec) across the Apple Music catalog. Apple Music’s Lossless tier begins with 16 bit at 44.1 kHz CD quality, and ventures up to 24 bit at 48 kHz and is natively playable on Apple devices like the iPhone, iPad, Mac, or Apple TV.
As 9to5mac explains, 1:1 Lossless Audio will not be playable on AirPods, which means it will require professional and/or specialist wired headphones to enjoy. Hi-Resolution Lossless, which ramps up the quality to 24 bit at 192 kHz, takes it even further and will require an external DAC (digital-to-analog converter).