Tidal‘s claim to fame may be high-resolution music streaming, but starting next year the artist-owned service could face some tough competition from Cupertino. A new report claims Apple Music is gearing up to offer its own option for audiophiles by introducing a new feature that its rivals can’t match.
According to Mac Otakara, Apple is set to announce its own high-res audio streaming in 2016. The new feature would apparently work with headphones that connect through the company’s Lightning port, which could make it possible to stream music at up to 96kHz/24bit. By comparison, Tidal’s lossless sound quality is just 44.1kHz/16 bit. There are other factors to consider when it comes to music streaming quality, including the file type.
Apple could be the first company to get a lot of people listening to high-resolution music on their smartphones, especially if the firm starts offering Lightning connector earbuds for free with each new iOS device.
It’s also unclear whether competitors like Tidal, Spotify and Pandora will be able to take advantage of the same technology. It’s possible Apple could block any other streaming services from using the Lightning port, potentially arguing that it takes a level of hardware-software integration only Cupertino can offer.
This isn’t the first time we’ve heard rumors Apple could be considering high-resolution audio in one way or another, but there’s also never been a better time to introduce the new feature.