How to Listen to Spotify Offline Using Your iPhone

Spotify's desktop client is great for rocking your Discover Weekly playlist when you're relaxing at home or stuck behind a desk at work, but eventually you're going to want to take your collection on the road. Fortunately for those without unlimited data plans for their phones, you can prepare for long trips by saving tunes to your iPhone.

Credit: Hemin Xylan/Shutterstock

(Image credit: Hemin Xylan/Shutterstock)

Here's how to keep the songs you love and on your iPhone at all times, by syncing them to your device for when you're without signal or don't want to buffer or burn through your allotments.

What You'll Need

Getting Spotify Up and Running On Your iPhone

1. Download Spotify from the iOS app store (find it by searching Spotify in the app store or visiting this page).

2. Launch Spotify.

3. Tap "Log in" at the bottom of the welcome screen.

4. Log in to your Spotify Premium account. You can log in with the Facebook account connected to your phone or with your Spotify login details (email and password).

Now that you have Spotify set up on your iPhone, the next step is syncing your playlists for offline listening.

Syncing Your Spotify Collection For Offline Access

1. Find a playlist or album. You can't download individual songs, so create a new playlist (tap the three dots next to a song, tap Add to Playlist and tap Create) if you just want to save certain tracks.

2. Tap the Download songs switch to move it to the On position.

3. Spinning widget icons will appear next to songs as they're download. And then they'll become green icons of circles with arrows pointing down. 

4. A playlist is finished downloading when it says "Downloaded songs" next to the switch you turned on earlier.

Removing an album or playlist from your device is unfortunately not as simple:

Once you've synced a track to your phone, you cannot easily delete the data it takes to store that music on your phone. Even if you switch the Download switch to "Off", the track is still taking up space on your phone, so that if you make the track available offline again you don't need to re-sync it. Even deleting the song from your Spotify library will not get rid of the cached data. The only way to get rid of a synced song's data is to uninstall the Spotify app. This is just another example of Spotify's imperfect iOS implementation.

To find all the music you've saved for offline, tap Your Library in the bottom right corner, select one of the kinds of content (which include Playlists, Artists, Songs and Albums) and tap the three lines icon.

Then, tap Downloads.

Now that you know how to sync your music, you're free to enjoy your playlists on the beach, on the subway, or in that annoying cafe that doesn't have free wi-fi. Enjoy!

Ana Hurka-Robles
Ana Hurka-Robles has worked as a video producer, an illustrator, a web producer, and now makes her living as a UX designer. In addition to her years at Tom’s Guide, she has worked at and