Watch: How to stream music on HomePod using iTunes Match

Posted:
in General Discussion edited February 2018
There are a few options by which to stream music directly from HomePod, the main contender being Apple's monthly subscription service Apple Music. But if you, like many others, have built up an extensive iTunes library over the years, iTunes Match offers the biggest bang for your buck.





Though HomePod has been available for only a couple weeks, we're already hearing people say that you need an Apple Music subscription to have Siri play music on the smart speaker. That's simply not true.

Siri on HomePod has access to all of your podcasts, Beats 1 Live Radio, and any music that's in your iCloud Music Library, including iTunes Store purchases and music matched with iTunes Match.

iTunes Match analyzes songs that are in your iTunes Library, no matter where you downloaded or imported them from. It then matches them with songs that are hosted by Apple's servers and automatically uploads them to your iCloud Library, which can be accessed any Apple device that supports iCloud Music Library.

The service costs $25 a year, which comes out to just over $2 a month, compared to $10 a month for an individual Apple Music plan.

With iTunes Match, users can ask Siri to play any matched song on HomePod. There are some limitations, for example certain songs or audio formats may not be supported. Still, if you invested in your iTunes library and want streaming access to those tunes, iTunes Match is a great choice.




To begin, you'll need access to either a Mac or PC and the latest version of iTunes. At the top of the iTunes window, click "Store" and navigate to "iTunes Match" under "Music Quick Links" at the right side of the window. Click the Subscribe button and enter the Apple ID and password you use on your iPhone.

Once successfully subscribed, click "Add This Computer" and re-enter your password. iTunes will automatically scan your iTunes library for matches. Note that not all songs will be matched, since you could have songs from CDs that never made it onto Apple Music.

Any time you add new music to your iTunes library, it'll automatically be scanned and added to your iCloud Music Library, assuming it was successfully matched. If you purchased music from services like Amazon Music or Google Play Music, you should be able to login and download the original audio files to your computer. If you run into issues with automatic matching, you can attempt a manual match by navigating to File > Library > Update iCloud Music Library.

Once your songs are matched and uploaded, you can instantly start listening to them on the HomePod by asking Siri to play a song, album or music by a specific artist. On iPhone, just head to Music in the Settings app and enable iCloud Music Library. You should now see the songs matched in your Library. As a bonus, you can tap the iCloud icon to download tracks to your iPhone.

By default, your iTunes Match subscription will automatically renew every year. If you'd like to cancel your subscription, just go to Settings on your iPhone, tap on your name, then tap "iTunes & App Stores," tap your Apple ID at the top, and tap "View Apple ID." Tap "Subscriptions," then "Cancel Subscription." You'll continue to have access until your year-long subscription expires.

iTunes Match is the perfect option for somebody who is considering buying the HomePod, but doesn't want to pay $10 a month for Apple Music.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 32
    is there not an easy way to have your home pod play music from your iTunes library on your Mac or iPhone if you DON'T have iTunes Match?
  • Reply 2 of 32
    I tried iTunes Match a few months after it came out, and I’m reticent to try it again as it deleted almost one third of all my music from my computer.  I don’t mind if it can’t match the music and not copy the music to the cloud if it has issues, but I mind very much that it deleted my data.  That’s just rude and borders on illegal.  I never gave them permission to do that.

    It took weeks determining what was lost and replacing it again, and I’m sure I didn’t get it all back.  It was outrageous and cost me a lot in time and frustration without any compensation, and yet they charge for this service?

    Never again, it just hurt too much.
    eightzerocecil444deepinsiderMenckeniana
  • Reply 3 of 32
    bill42 said:
    is there not an easy way to have your home pod play music from your iTunes library on your Mac or iPhone if you DON'T have iTunes Match?
    Sure. On your Mac, just choose your HomePod as an AirPlay target. You can control it from your Mac, or from your iPhone using Apple's "Remote" app.
  • Reply 4 of 32
    bdekok said:
    I tried iTunes Match a few months after it came out, and I’m reticent to try it again as it deleted almost one third of all my music from my computer.  I don’t mind if it can’t match the music and not copy the music to the cloud if it has issues, but I mind very much that it deleted my data.  That’s just rude and borders on illegal.  I never gave them permission to do that.

    It took weeks determining what was lost and replacing it again, and I’m sure I didn’t get it all back.  It was outrageous and cost me a lot in time and frustration without any compensation, and yet they charge for this service?

    Never again, it just hurt too much.
    This was one of Apple's greatest gaffes. Apple's Big Thing to me was being able to confidently say to my poor PC colleagues "I've never lost data to a Mac." 

    If you're big into music, curating an maintaining it is a huge deal. Apple blew it, and perhaps now paying the price. 

    An alternative might be to buy iCloud storage and manually copy the library there. The article seems to say you can then Siri it on HomePod from there. But then yet another sync process to go through.

    Apple could easily solve this by making Siri on HomePod access any music library on the connected network. But of course, then they are out the fees. And that fee is important to them.
    cecil444deepinsider
  • Reply 5 of 32
    auxioauxio Posts: 1,945member
    bdekok said:
    I tried iTunes Match a few months after it came out, and I’m reticent to try it again as it deleted almost one third of all my music from my computer.  I don’t mind if it can’t match the music and not copy the music to the cloud if it has issues, but I mind very much that it deleted my data.  That’s just rude and borders on illegal.  I never gave them permission to do that.

    It took weeks determining what was lost and replacing it again, and I’m sure I didn’t get it all back.  It was outrageous and cost me a lot in time and frustration without any compensation, and yet they charge for this service?

    Never again, it just hurt too much.
    And I did the same, with a library of about 12,000 meticulously collected music files (many of which I painstakingly ripped from rare vinyl records), and the only thing which happened to me is that I got a mismatched version when I tried to play some of them on devices other than the Mac Mini which I use for my central file storage.  None of the original music files disappeared.

    Over time, I removed and re-added those songs which had bad matches at first, and it seemed to work.  Not a great first experience, but it sorted itself out in time and I'm very happy with iTunes Match now.  Its saved me so much time and hassle trying to sync music to different devices.

    I'm not trying to take away from your experience at all, I'm just saying that if someone who hasn't tried iTunes Match is going to make a decision based on anecdotal evidence, then they should take into account more than just one case.
    edited February 2018 roundaboutnow
  • Reply 6 of 32
    bill42 said:
    is there not an easy way to have your home pod play music from your iTunes library on your Mac or iPhone if you DON'T have iTunes Match?
    We have to wait on iTunes Home Sharing support like the Apple TV has.
    plovell said:
    Sure. On your Mac, just choose your HomePod as an AirPlay target. You can control it from your Mac, or from your iPhone using Apple's "Remote" app.
    Airplay is over 10 years old, unreliable and on your phone you can't choose multiple speakers and if you run the camera app the music stops.
  • Reply 7 of 32
    Would be nice if AppleMusic on my iPad would show what’s playing via AppleMusic on my HomePod. They don’t seem to be aware of each other. 
  • Reply 8 of 32
    I know some people had issues with Match when it first came out, but one of those people wasn't me. My 34,000+ tracks, some from CD's, some ripped from vinyl, some ripped from tape, and some from Napster all stayed in my library with the metadata I had added without any issues. I like it and I still use it.
    StrangeDays
  • Reply 9 of 32
    bill42 said:
    is there not an easy way to have your home pod play music from your iTunes library on your Mac or iPhone if you DON'T have iTunes Match?
    We have to wait on iTunes Home Sharing support like the Apple TV has.
    plovell said:
    Sure. On your Mac, just choose your HomePod as an AirPlay target. You can control it from your Mac, or from your iPhone using Apple's "Remote" app.
    Airplay is over 10 years old, unreliable and on your phone you can't choose multiple speakers and if you run the camera app the music stops.
    What sort of reliability issues do you have with AirPlay? never had issues. Good thing AP2 is coming out tho. 
  • Reply 10 of 32
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 6,530member
    I have used iTunes Match since the beginning and have never had a problem. I have a ton of classical music CDs that I ripped into iTunes that are no longer in print. iTunes Match uploaded them all without issues. Other rock CDs like Chicago, Doobie Brothers, Blood Sweat and Tears were matched perfectly. I stream them to this day. So I am very skeptical of these “iTunes Match sucks” comments.


    jony0
  • Reply 11 of 32
    bill42 said:
    is there not an easy way to have your home pod play music from your iTunes library on your Mac or iPhone if you DON'T have iTunes Match?
    Airplay form Mac or IOS device to HomePod. There is no easier way than that. You don't have to have pay for a streaming service or use match. I thought that at this point this would be obvious. Airplay is the key, not a streaming service. I have even played Apple lossless files from iCloud drive to the HomePod using airplay with my phone. 
  • Reply 12 of 32
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,835member
    bdekok said:
    I tried iTunes Match a few months after it came out, and I’m reticent to try it again as it deleted almost one third of all my music from my computer.  I don’t mind if it can’t match the music and not copy the music to the cloud if it has issues, but I mind very much that it deleted my data.  That’s just rude and borders on illegal.  I never gave them permission to do that.

    It took weeks determining what was lost and replacing it again, and I’m sure I didn’t get it all back.  It was outrageous and cost me a lot in time and frustration without any compensation, and yet they charge for this service?

    Never again, it just hurt too much.
    B.S.  iTunes Match does not touch your locally stored Library.
  • Reply 13 of 32
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,835member

    lkrupp said:
    I have used iTunes Match since the beginning and have never had a problem. I have a ton of classical music CDs that I ripped into iTunes that are no longer in print. iTunes Match uploaded them all without issues. Other rock CDs like Chicago, Doobie Brothers, Blood Sweat and Tears were matched perfectly. I stream them to this day. So I am very skeptical of these “iTunes Match sucks” comments.


    Agreed.  It even uploaded all my own studio production work that I can now replay using HomePod. That's what is so darned clever, if Apple have the track they simply link to their copy if not as with my own material it is uploaded.  It is an amazing and safe service and has no effect on locally stored data as these trolls are suggesting.
    edited February 2018
  • Reply 14 of 32
    MacPro said:
    bdekok said:
    I tried iTunes Match a few months after it came out, and I’m reticent to try it again as it deleted almost one third of all my music from my computer.  I don’t mind if it can’t match the music and not copy the music to the cloud if it has issues, but I mind very much that it deleted my data.  That’s just rude and borders on illegal.  I never gave them permission to do that.

    It took weeks determining what was lost and replacing it again, and I’m sure I didn’t get it all back.  It was outrageous and cost me a lot in time and frustration without any compensation, and yet they charge for this service?

    Never again, it just hurt too much.
    B.S.  iTunes Match does not touch your locally stored Library.
    Also, surely anyone that devoted to their music collection would have had a backup of it somewhere? I don't care too much about mine even I have it all backed up...
    linkman
  • Reply 15 of 32
    cpsrocpsro Posts: 2,424member
    Very disappointing iTunes Match doesn't sync playlist items that are streaming internet "radio" stations and the HomePod and the iOS Music app seem only able to play a teensy, tiny fraction of the internet radio stations listed and playable in iTunes.
    edited February 2018
  • Reply 16 of 32
    Are there any caveats of using Apple Music instead of iTunes Match? Other than the price of course. In other words, is there anything that iTunes Match can do that Apple Music cannot?
  • Reply 17 of 32
    linkman said:
    Are there any caveats of using Apple Music instead of iTunes Match? Other than the price of course. In other words, is there anything that iTunes Match can do that Apple Music cannot?

    ITunes Match plays music you have. Apple Music plays anything in Apple’s catalogue. 

    And I’ll ask again, Please, for the love of all that is holy, please bring back mobile genius. Please let us alter metadata beyond stars on an iPhone or at least the iPad.  Make smart playlists something I can do out and about.  I want an iTunes experience. 
  • Reply 18 of 32
    Can anyone confirm whether I can use my own playlists on HomePod with an iTunes Match subscription? I have music in my collection by artists with names that Siri cannot understand (foreign names), but I could set up playlists with names that Siri can understand, if I can use playlists.
  • Reply 19 of 32
    tex210 said: iTunes Match plays music you have. Apple Music plays anything in Apple’s catalogue. 
    Not exactly. The music available in Apple Music is not a 1:1 match to the music available in the iTunes Store. 
    tex210
  • Reply 20 of 32
    tex210 said:
    linkman said:
    Are there any caveats of using Apple Music instead of iTunes Match? Other than the price of course. In other words, is there anything that iTunes Match can do that Apple Music cannot?

    ITunes Match plays music you have. Apple Music plays anything in Apple’s catalogue. 

    https://www.apple.com/apple-music/

    "Apple Music allows you to stream our catalog of 45 million songs, along with everything in your iTunes library — no matter where it came from."

    According to that it sounds that AM provides the same sort of matching service that iTunes Match does. I also understand that AM provides a whole boatload of songs that aren't in my puny 20000 song library. I'm asking if I'm giving up any features of iTunes Match by using AM instead.


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