How to move your Spotify playlists to Apple Music

Transferring playlists to Apple Music is easy enough, but you’ll likely have to pay for the privilege

iPhone Apple Music
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Switching from one music streaming service to another might seem like a daunting process, especially if you have dozens or even hundreds of carefully curated playlists. But it’s actually quite simple, with several apps for iOS, Android, Mac and PC ready to help you make the switch.

Some of these apps will perform the basic process of replicating your Spotify playlists in Apple Music for free, but then charge for more advanced features. Some also only offer a free trial of 100 tracks before asking you to pay.

In most of these cases you’ll only need to pay once, but for those with more complicated demands – or who want the flexibility to switch between streaming services on a regular basis, taking their playlists with them – monthly subscriptions and lifetime memberships to these transfer apps are available.

The first app we’re going to show you is called SongShift. It’s only available for iOS, but we’re willing to bet most Spotify users switching to Apple Music are doing so with an iPhone in their pocket. If this isn’t you, we will also show how another app, called FreeYourMusic, works in a similar way and is available for iOS and Android, as well as Mac and Windows.

Download and log into SongShift

SongShift for iPhone

(Image credit: Future)

SongShift is free to download from the iOS App Store. It is then quick and easy to connect the app to your Apple Music and Spotify accounts (or accounts for Prime Music, YouTube Music, Pandora, Deezer and others, too). If permission is denied to connect SongShift with Apple Music, you’ll need to hop into the Settings app, then go to Privacy and allow SongShift to access your Apple Music data.

Once you have connected the app to Apple Music and Spotify, tap Get Started, then hit the plus icon in the top-right corner. Now tap on Setup Source and tap on the Spotify icon, then find the playlist you want to transfer.

Here you can pick a Spotify playlist, or tap on Add Multiple to transfer several at once; however, this is a premium feature and brings up the option to pay either £4.99/$5 a month, £19.49/$20 a year or £34.99/$40 for lifetime access to SongShift. We recommend you pay for a month, transfer all of your playlists in one hit, then cancel the recurring payment.

There’s also the option to pay a one-off fee of £1.79/$1.99 to unlock SongShare, a feature that lets you share playlists with friends, no matter which of SongShift’s supported streaming services they use.

Once you have picked a playlist (or playlists) to transfer, set the destination as Apple Music and tap the 'I’m Finished' button. This playlist will now process for a few moments, then you can tap on it, check that SongShift has found the right tracks in Apple Music, and confirm the matches. 

Now let the app do its thing, which takes just a second or so per track. If transferring playlists that are packed with thousands of tracks, then naturally this process will take a while. If SongShift can’t find a track on Apple Music, it’ll let you know.

Lastly, head over to your Apple Music app and you’ll see that all of those Spotify playlists have been recreated, with the correct album art in place and with your name as the playlist creator.

How to transfer playlists with FreeYourMusic

FreeYourMusic for Mac

(Image credit: Future)

A good desktop alternative to SongShare is called FreeYourMusic. This app works in a similar way, connecting with your Spotify and Apple Music accounts, then automatically searching the latter to create a new set of playlists.

FreeYourMusic works with a wide range of streaming services, including Amazon Music, Apple Music, Deezer, Pandora, Spotify, Tidal, YouTube Music, Napster and more. It takes just a few clicks to replicate your Spotify playlists in Apple Music, and there’s a section to highlight any tracks the app failed to find.

However, the free version of FreeYourMusic only lets you transfer 100 tracks from one streaming service to another. We tried to transfer a playlist with 115 tracks, which resulted in the first 100 appearing in a new playlist in Apple Music, and the remaining 15 being left behind.

If you close the app at this point, it’ll offer the opportunity to upgrade the limit to 200 tracks in return for your email address. Enter the code emailed to you, and the 100-track limit is doubled.

After that though, you’ll have to pay. The basic tier is priced at £10.99/$11.99 a month and enables unlimited transfers of songs, playlists and albums between any two compatible streaming services, across all desktop and mobile platforms. For most people, the best option will be to pay for the one month, transfer everything, then cancel your subscription.

Alternatively, you can pay £34.99/$39.99 a year for the premium tier, which lets you share playlists across platforms and backup playlists to the cloud. If you plan to use FreeYourMusic repeatedly over the coming years, you can pay £174.99/$199.99 for a lifetime subscription. This is quite an investment though, and would become cost-effective after five years, when compared to paying annually for the premium tier.

Alistair Charlton

Alistair is a freelance automotive and technology journalist. He has bylines on esteemed sites such as the BBC, Forbes, TechRadar, and of best of all, T3, where he covers topics ranging from classic cars and men's lifestyle, to smart home technology, phones, electric cars, autonomy, Swiss watches, and much more besides. He is an experienced journalist, writing news, features, interviews and product reviews. If that didn't make him busy enough, he is also the co-host of the AutoChat podcast.