More Dolby Atmos music is coming thanks to Apple — here’s what’s happening

Apple Music app on iPhone
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Apple Music is already one of the biggest providers of Dolby Atmos audio tracks and, soon, it’s likely going to add even more tracks to the service thanks to a potential new incentive program that rewards artists for recording in the spatial audio format.

According to a new report by Bloomberg, Apple is going to pay artists more in royalties when their music is played in the spatial audio format, which in turn should cause an influx of new Dolby Atmos audio tracks for streamers to listen to. At least, that’s the plan on paper.

Why the sudden interest? It all comes down to the upcoming launch of the Apple Vision Pro headset — due out early in 2024 — and rumored release of the AirPods Max 2, both of which could support near-lossless spatial audio. A slew of new music coming down the pipeline right as these products are about to launch could help drum up some interest in the new devices, something Apple is surely keen to do.

What is Dolby Atmos? 

Dolby Atmos is already one of the most prominent names in the home theater space — and, thanks to streaming services like Apple Music, it’s found success in the music industry, too. 

In short, Atmos provides a greater level of surround sound detail than is typically available in stereo or 5.1 surround sound mixes. Apple introduced Dolby Atmos audio to its Apple Music service in 2021 and has been a major proponent of the format ever since.

Currently, there are more than a dozen Apple devices that support spatial audio including the latest iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Pro as well as the AirPods Pro 2 and the current-generation AirPods Max. With two more devices potentially on the horizon, now's as good of a time as any for Apple to invest in its Dolby Atmos music catalogue. 

Looking for a new way to listen to spatial audio tracks? Check out our guide to the best Dolby Atmos soundbars.

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Nick Pino
Managing Editor, TV and AV

Nick Pino heads up the TV and AV verticals at Tom's Guide and covers everything from OLED TVs to the latest wireless headphones. He was formerly the Senior Editor, TV and AV at TechRadar (Tom's Guide's sister site) and has previously written for GamesRadar, Official Xbox Magazine, PC Gamer and other outlets over the last decade. Not sure which TV you should buy? Drop him an email or tweet him on Twitter and he can help you out.