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You can set Spotify as your default music player in iOS 14.5 beta

Apple has finally offered the ability to set Spotify as your default music player for Siri commands. This was previously only available on HomePods, and was a feature we asked for back in 2019.

The new behavior appears in the beta of iOS 14.5. The first time you ask Siri to play something, it lists all the streaming services you have installed on your device and ask you which of them you want to use. Once you have done so, Siri then defaults to that service for subsequent requests …

The feature was first spotted by Reddit users (via MacRumors), and includes podcast apps, too. Users without the Apple Music app installed report that it simply defaults to the music player they use.

“I just told Siri to play a song and it started on Spotify without any further questions. I have Apple Music uninstalled.”

“I don’t have the music app installed and it just asked for permission to access YouTube Music. After that, every request has been sent straight to YTM.”

“I asked Siri to play an artist without specifying Spotify and it told me it will need access to my Spotify account and asked if I allowed access. I replied yes and the song played. Now every command controls Spotify even if not mentioned. Great move.”

“It even works when I ask it to play my liked songs and it just goes straight to Spotify to play that playlist, pretty cool.”

Users do, however, note that it seems buggy at present.

“This actually seems fairly buggy. I tried this and it didn’t give me a pop up. Just goes straight to Apple Music.”

“Yeah, it is a bit inconsistent, as with all things Siri. Just now i asked it to ‘Play blue hotel’, after which it offered me to choose, then I dismissed it and asked it again and it played straight on Apple Music, and then the third time I asked it, it asked me for access to my Pocket Casts data, which is a podcast app and obviously doesn’t have music at all.”

Apple has made a number of moves of late designed to keep antitrust actions at bay. iOS 14 last year allowed users to change their default web browser and email app as part of five changes made in response to antitrust concerns. The changes were made after it was suggested that the company was abusing its dominant position to put competitive apps at a disadvantage.

Apple has so far kept this one quiet. It’s worth noting that there is no UI for this in Settings as yet, so it’s possible that the company didn’t intend to have this feature release in iOS 14.5. Either way, it will make a lot of people happy once it is fully available.

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Avatar for Ben Lovejoy Ben Lovejoy

Ben Lovejoy is a British technology writer and EU Editor for 9to5Mac. He’s known for his op-eds and diary pieces, exploring his experience of Apple products over time, for a more rounded review. He also writes fiction, with two technothriller novels, a couple of SF shorts and a rom-com!

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