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Apple Music adds Dynamic Head Tracking to Spatial Audio


The iOS 15 iPhone upgrade has delivered new features for Apple Music including dynamic head tracking to offer a more immersive effect so the listener can hear the music coming from all directions.

Listeners can experience dynamic headtracking with Spatial Audio through AirPods Pro or AirPods Max on recent iPhones running iOS 15 or on iPads running iPadOS 15.

This feature can only be found with Apple Music and builds on Spatial Audio with Dolby Atmos which has already been experienced by more than 40 million Apple Music listeners.

In fact, a quarter of the biggest new releases in August were released in Spatial Audio.

Currently, 40 of the top 100 songs globally and 28 of the top 100 albums in the US and Apple Music are available in Spatial.

Dynamic Head Tracking adds a whole new layer to Spatial Audio by tracking the subtle movements of your head to offer an even more convincing illusion that the music is coming at you from all directions and not just from your headphones.

If you happen to turn your head, the sound will re-calibrate around you.

This technology takes the reading from the AirPods Pro and AirPods Max accelerometers and gyroscope to track your head movements and communicates that information with the iPhone or iPad to remap the audio soundscape to match your head’s position.

It would sound like you’re in a room where an instrument is being played in front of you and if you move your head to the right it would put your left ear closer to the sound and if you move left it would put your right ear closer to the sound.

And while music can be heard all around you, there are some elements that are anchored to help with the spatial feeling.

Dynamic head tracking will even work with stereo tracks with Apple Music able to “spatialise” and “head track” the audio and provide the perception of a spatial experience.

Spatial Audio with Dynamic Head Tracking will only work with AirPods Pro and AirPods Max while Spatial Audio with Dolby Atmos can be heard on any earphones or headphones while listening to Apple Music.