Apple Music Animated Cover Art Not Working? (Do These Things)

Key takeaway: If Apple Music animated cover art is not working, do three things. First, disable Low Power Mode and Low Data Mode. Second, disable Reduce Motion. Third, disable Increase Contrast.

Apple Music’s animated cover art includes moving elements. Unfortunately, there have been reports of Apple Music’s animated cover art not working. Let’s explore the underlying causes.

Animated art is disabled

You should activate animated cover art. When you turn on animated art, playlists, albums, artist pages, and other animated cover art will automatically play in the Apple Music app.

Here’s how to enable Animated Art on your iOS device:

  • Open the Settings app.
  • Tap Music.
  • Select Animated Art.
  • Choose On.
Vibrant animated cover art displayed on Apple Music interface, adding a visually captivating element to your music experience.

It sounds simple, but you might have forgotten to activate animated cover art. Before you start troubleshooting, ensure that animated art is enabled – it should be your first step.

Your phone is running on ‘Low Power Mode’

Apple Music’s cover animations won’t play if you have ‘Low Power Mode’ enabled on your phone. This feature conserves battery when it’s low.

To disable Low Power Mode, navigate to Settings > Battery on your iOS device.

You can also deactivate Low Power Mode from the Control Center. Navigate to Settings > Control Center > Customize Controls, then add Low Power Mode.

According to Apple, certain functions, such as Apple Music’s animated cover art, might not function correctly when Low Power Mode is on.

Your phone is using ‘Low Data Mode’

Apple Music’s cover animations won’t work with ‘Low Data Mode’ activated. It’s a feature that conserves your cellular data by reducing streaming quality and background app refreshes.

To disable Low Data Mode, navigate to Settings > Cellular > Cellular Data Options > Data Mode. Just choose between Standard or Allow More Data on 5G.

‘Reduce Motion’ is enabled

To make sure Apple Music’s animated cover art works, turn off ‘Reduce Motion’ in your settings. Head to Settings > Accessibility, select Motion and disable Reduce Motion.

Apple mentions that enabling Reduce Motion may cause some apps, like Apple Music, to reduce or limit animations and effects.

‘Auto-Play Animated Images’ is disabled

If you want visual motion on your iPhone screen, you can turn on ‘Auto-Play Animated Images’ in your settings. When on, moving elements such as animated cover art play automatically.

  • Go to Settings > Accessibility > Motion.
  • Toggle on Auto-Play Animated Images.

‘Increase Contrast’ is enabled

To enjoy full-screen animated artwork, disable ‘Increase Contrast’ in your settings.

To disable ‘Increase Contrast,’ go to Settings > Accessibility > Per-App Settings > Music and make sure the ‘Increase Contrast’ toggle is off.

By following these steps, you can enjoy full-screen animated artwork. I personally enjoy it. Here’s a comparison before and after applying these changes.

Partially displayed animated cover art on Apple Music with 'Increase Contrast' setting turned on.
With “Increase Contrast” on.
Fully displayed animated cover art on Apple Music with 'Increase Contrast' setting turned off.
With “Increase Contrast” off.

Please note that I’m referring to the ‘Increase Contrast’ setting in General Pre-App Settings, not the one under ‘Display & Text Size.’

Background App Refresh is disabled for Apple Music

If you have ‘Background App Refresh’ disabled for Music, the animated cover art won’t work. It’s a feature that allows apps to run in the background, even when you’re not using them.

To enable Background App Refresh for Apple Music, navigate to Settings > General > Background App Refresh and turn the toggle next to Music ON.

However, running certain apps like Apple Music in the background may drain your battery and use three to five megabytes of data per hour.

Your phone has a poor network connection

Animated cover art will not work on Apple Music if your device has a poor network connection. Try connecting to a different network or move to another area with better reception.

Your phone has a low battery

Animated cover art will not work on Apple Music if your device has a low battery. Charge your device and make sure it has enough battery to keep apps running at their maximum potential.

Animated cover art is not available on all albums

Note that not all albums have animated cover art.

Animated cover art helps emerging artists establish their brand identity using artistic elements. However, artists must follow specific rules when using animated cover art.

If you’ve followed all the steps above and still have issues with Apple Music’s animated cover art, it may be because the artist you’re listening to hasn’t uploaded their cover art.

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