Listening to iTunes Match tracks on an airplane
Ask iLounge offers readers the opportunity to get answers to their iPod-, iPhone-, iPad-, iTunes-, or Apple TV-related questions from a member of the iLounge editorial team. We'll answer several questions here each week, and of course, you can always get help with more immediate concerns from the iLounge Discussion Forums. Submit your questions for consideration using our Ask iLounge Submit Form. We reserve the right to edit questions for grammar, spelling, and length.
Q: I am thinking of signing up for iTunes Match. I am still investigating what I am up against before I sign up for it. I have been reading many forums and I couldn’t find the definite answer on the following questions and hope you can help. If I am traveling out of the country, there is no way for me to listen to my collections on the plane. Can I turn off iTunes Match and sync my music to my iPhone like what I had before?
A: To answer your first question, while iTunes Match makes your entire music library available in the cloud, it also allows you to specifically download individual tracks, or entire artists, albums or playlists for listening offline, such as when you’re on an airplane or otherwise out of coverage. Once iTunes Match is enabled, any track stored in the cloud will have a Download button beside it, and you can find a “Download All” button at the bottom of an album, artist, or playlist to download ALL of the tracks in that particular category.
Further, iTunes Match on an iOS device automatically downloads anything you’ve listened to and caches it for offline use, so if you go out of coverage while listening to a song, not only can you continue listening to that song, but it will remain available on your device and can be listened to again. This automatically downloaded copy is be kept on your device as long as sufficient space is available; if your iPhone is low on space, however, these will be automatically purged to make more room for other content such as photos, videos, app data, or even iTunes Match tracks that you’ve specifically downloaded manually.
When you are in Airplane Mode, or otherwise out of coverage, your iPhone will automatically hide any iTunes Match tracks that are not stored locally on the device. You can also do this manually by going into the Music section of your Settings app and turning OFF the “Show All Music” option.
Note that a “Use Cellular Data” option is also available here that will allow you to choose whether you want to stream iTunes Match tracks over your cellular data connection or only over Wi-Fi. When this option is disabled, being away from a Wi-Fi network will have the same effect as having Airplane Mode on as far as iTunes Match is concerned. This can be particularly useful if you are on a limited data plan, or are travelling to another country and want to avoid excess roaming charges.
So basically, if you’re going to be travelling out of data coverage, simply use the options above to download any songs, artists, albums, or playlists before you leave data coverage, and then double-check that everything you want is on your device by switching off the “Show All Music” option. See Travelling with iTunes Match for more information.
Note that if you want to sync your music from iTunes directly, you can still do this by turning off iTunes Match and doing exactly what you did before. However, there is definitely more of an advantage of leaving iTunes Match on, since you can easily change your stored tracks anywhere that you happen to have a Wi-Fi or cellular data connection rather than having to reconnect to your main iTunes library.
- Will removing a credit card from Safari also remove it from Apple Pay?
- Can I mute Handoff calls coming into my Mac from my iPhone?
- How do I keep my iPhone calls from ringing on my Mac?
- Why doesn’t Traffic show up on my Today Notifications Screen?
- Why doesn’t my iPhone reconnect to Wi-Fi after I turn it on?
- Why can’t I see the iPad-style landscape view on my iPhone 6 Plus?
- Apple’s new ‘Echo rival’ may feature a camera
- Apple ‘working rapidly’ to extend Apple Pay to more countries
- Report: Apple’s Siri-based Amazon Echo competitor will be a new Apple TV
- Report: Apple SVP Eddy Cue proposed bid to buy Time Warner
- Beta testing for Pokémon GO begins in the U.S.
- Apple’s plan to open stores in India hits a snag (Update: India’s finance minister ratifies ruling)
- Apple looking into charging stations for electric cars
- Apple hires hint at improvements in encryption, health monitoring
- Hyundai adds CarPlay support to more vehicles
- Plaintiffs file new motion to keep ‘Error 53’ Touch ID lawsuit alive
- OtterBox Symmetry Series Hybrid Case for 12.9” iPad Pro
- Logitech Logi BASE Charging Stand for iPad Pro
- Twelve South TimePorter for Apple Watch
- August Doorbell Cam
- August Smart Lock HomeKit enabled + Smart Keypad
- ecobee3 HomeKit-enabled smart Wi-Fi thermostat
- Zagg Now Cam
- Yantouch EyE Portable Wireless Speaker
- Netatmo Wind Gauge
- Incipio Stashback for iPhone 6/6s
- Filling the Gap: A look at third-party HomeKit apps
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of tvOS 9.2
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 9.3
- Opinion: Why Apple needs a dedicated HomeKit app
- Inside the betas: What’s new in iOS 9.3 and tvOS 9.2 (Updated)
- Life with HomeKit: Our experiences with Apple’s home automation system
- Under the Radar: 10 ‘hidden’ details about the new Apple TV
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 9.0
- Under the Radar: A closer look at smaller iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus changes
- A First Look at iOS 9’s Transit in Apple Maps (Updated for watchOS 2)