In short: Apple Music can play songs slowly due to many reasons. Often, it happens because of a glitch or because the Apple Music server is down. Restarting your device often fixes the issue.
Does Apple Music play songs slow? It’s as if songs are a few beats per minute too slow. While the speed will return after a few moments, it’s an odd thing to happen. What causes this?
Why is Apple Music playing songs slow?
Apple Music plays songs slowly sometimes, like running a 45 bpm song at 33. Closing the app and restarting your device may fix the issue. Here are five reasons why.
1. Glitch on the Apple Music app
Whenever Apple Music plays a song slowly, I would often chalk it up as a glitch. The Apple Music app is known for having temporary malfunctions and short-lived faults in the system.
For instance, I’ve had local songs just randomly glitching and cutting out on me (as in skip to the next song after hitting a certain point) and somehow a sync magically fixes it.
Eventually, the song will play normally. I’ve had people come up to me regarding this issue, and most of them would say that the song would play at a normal speed after a few seconds.
Solution: restart your app and/or device
It’s wise to start by force-quitting and restarting the Apple Music app, whether it’s on your iPhone or MacBook. It should solve glitches and unexpected issues.
2. Not enough bandwidth on your device
It’s easy to blame the Apple Music app, but your device might be the one to blame. By default, iOS devices do not take full advantage of all the bandwidth available to them.
Instead, your iPhone, iPad, or Mac uses a single internet connection at a time.
Apple Music servers are delivering the requested data without an issue, but it is not getting to your device because of a bottleneck created by the way your device connects to the Internet.
This means that data-intensive apps, like Apple Music, don’t have enough bandwidth to run smoothly when there are signal fluctuations or when you are moving between Wi-Fi networks.
For example, songs will play smoothly on Apple Music until I open another app. A data-intensive app, like League of Legends, will cause the song to drop a few beats per minute slower.
The moment the game starts, the music drops to about ⅔ speed. Closing the game doesn’t fix it – the only way to get the music back to playing at normal speed is to restart the device.
Solution: install a fast-bonding VPN service
A fast-bonding VPN service allows your device to be connected to the Internet via Wi-Fi and mobile data at the same time. This increases your bandwidth and eliminates the bottleneck.
After you install a fast-bonding VPN service, like Speedify, you can leave it running in the background while you enjoy Apple Music and listen to songs at a normal speed.
3. Your internet connection is slow or unstable
If Apple Music is playing songs slowly, your internet connection might be slow or unstable. Try checking your internet connection speed with an online tool or app.
Solution: connect to a different network or mobile data
Restart your Wi-Fi router. If you are in a public place, try connecting to a different network. Alternatively, you can switch to mobile data and stream music without relying on Wi-Fi.
4. Apple Music server is down
If there’s nothing wrong with your internet, it could be that the Apple Music server is down. Unfortunately, there is nothing you can do but wait until the server is back up again.
Solution: check the Apple Music server status
Check the Apple Music server status if there’s nothing wrong with your internet. To do this, visit Apple’s System Status page using a web browser (Safari or Chrome).
5. Temporal illusion
Music can sound slower than usual due to a phenomenon known as a temporal illusion. It is when a person momentarily perceives time as slowing down, stopping, or speeding up.
This phenomenon can happen for various reasons, including the tempo and rhythm of the music, the complexity of the music, and the listener’s state of mind (different kinds of stress).
In some cases, music may sound faster when it is played at a fast tempo with a complex rhythm, as the brain may have difficulty keeping up with the rapid changes in the music.
Similarly, music may sound slower when it is played at a slower tempo with a simple rhythm, as the brain may perceive the passage of time as being slower due to the lack of stimuli.
So, maybe it’s you, not the Apple Music app.
Solution: take a deep breath
You should understand that speed is relative, so it might depend on your state of mind and what you were listening to before a specific song. Take a deep breath and just enjoy the music.