Apple is, and not for the first time, either, rumored to be developing its own “higher-quality” formats for audio streaming, according to a report that surfaced online recently.
The news comes from Mac Otakara (via MacRumors), in an article which cites information gleaned from “industry sources” at Tokyo’s recent Portable Audio Festival. There, members of the industry apparently noted that Apple indeed has higher-res audio streaming in the works, designed, of course, to be integrated within its Apple Music service.
Mac Otakara explains:
According to several insiders familiar with Apple, whose products are exhibited at PORTABLE AUDIO FESTIVAL 2015, the company has been developing Hi-Res Audio streaming up to 96kHz/24bit in 2016.
The Lightning terminal with iOS 9 is compatible up to 192kHz/24Bit, but we do not have information on the sampling frequency of Apple Music download music.
As MacRumors adds, the same report from Mac Otakara also explains that audio manufacturers are in the process of preparing their own third-party equipment, and particularly Lightning cables, in order to support the move.
Indeed, there’s been a lot of talk recently concerning Apple’s Lightning adapter on iOS; in particular, the anticipated “iPhone 7″ is expected to ditch its audio jack in favor of Lightning-equipped EarPods, and we also heard that the iPad Pro features a USB 3.0-speed Lighting port.
Apple has reportedly been developing its own high-res format for some time, in a bid to enhance both the iTunes Store as well as Apple Music. Through doing so, Apple Music would be in an even better position to counter the already-failing Jay Z-backed high-res streaming service, Tidal.
In fact, with Lightning-equipped EarPods reportedly on the way and Apple Music already launched, 2016 could be the perfect year for Cupertino to roll out its own high-res audio format for the masses.
If this is indeed in the cards for next year, we’d guess that June’s WWDC would offer the perfect opportunity for Apple, though of course, whether high-res audio is indeed coming from Cook et al. remains to be seen.