How to enable Apple Music streaming over a cellular connection

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Enable Apple Music over cellular
Enjoy Apple Music anywhere.
Image: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

If you are unable to play Apple Music tracks when you’re driving or out and about, it’s probably because you need to enable streaming over a cellular connection. We’ll show you how.

Apple Music streaming over a cellular connection is disabled by default on iPhone and iPad. So, if you attempt to play an album or playlist when you’re not connected to Wi-Fi, the app just skips through every track.

This is an effort to save those with limited data allowances from unwittingly burning through it all in just a few hours. If that’s not an issue for you, you can enable Music streaming over a data connection.

Enable Apple Music streaming over cellular

Simply follow these steps on iPhone and iPad:

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Tap Music, then tap Cellular Data.
  3. Tap the toggle alongside Cellular Data to enable it, then enable Streaming.

You can now stream Apple Music to your heart’s content over a 3G, 4G, or 5G data connection. Just return to the Music app and play a track, album, or playlist as you normally would.

If you have a large or unlimited data allowance, you may also choose to enable High Quality Streaming in the Cellular Data menu. Note, however, that you may struggle to load tracks with a spotty connection.

Changes in iOS and iPadOS 14.6

Apple has adjusted these settings slightly in its upcoming iOS and iPadOS 14.6 updates, which are currently in beta testing. So, the process for enabling cellular streaming and high quality music is a little different.

Enable Apple Music over cellular
The new Music settings in iOS 14.6.
Screenshots: Cult of Mac

The cellular data toggle resides directly under Music (there is no Cellular Data sub-menu anymore) and quality settings can be found under the new Cellular Streaming menu.