Can you play iPhone music on Android?

Can You Enjoy iPhone Music on an Android Device?

Music is a universal language that connects us all. With the rise of smartphones and portable devices, our music libraries now fit in the palm of our hands. But what happens when you switch between platforms, like from an iPhone to an Android device? Can you still access all your favorite songs and playlists?

In this guide, we’ll explore how to transfer music files from an iPhone to Android. We’ll compare music formats across devices, look at streaming services and cloud storage options, provide tips for converting files, and recommend some handy apps. Read on to learn how you can continue enjoying your iPhone music library even after switching to Android.

Music Formats on iPhone vs Android

When it comes to music formats, iPhones and Androids support some common formats like MP3 and AAC, but they differ in their support for lossless formats like FLAC (Free Lossless Audio Codec) and ALAC (Apple Lossless Audio Codec).

The most common format on both platforms is AAC (Advanced Audio Coding), which is an compressed format that discards some audio data to reduce file size while attempting to retain sound quality. Both iOS and Android devices fully support playback of AAC files 1.

MP3 is nearly universally supported on both platforms as well. However, iOS does not support FLAC playback natively while many Android devices do. Additionally, ALAC is supported on iOS but not on most Android devices 2.

So in summary, while AAC and MP3 have the widest cross-platform support, iOS favors ALAC for lossless audio while Android favors FLAC.

Transferring Music Files

One of the easiest ways to transfer music files from an iPhone to an Android device is by using iTunes on a computer as an intermediary. Here’s how:

First, connect your iPhone to your computer and open iTunes. In the library section, select the songs you want to transfer to your Android device. Right click on the selected songs and choose “Export.” This will save them as .mp3 files that can be transferred to any device.

Next, download and install Android File Transfer on your computer. Connect your Android device via USB and Android File Transfer will open automatically. Then simply drag and drop the exported .mp3 files into the music folder.

The advantage of using iTunes is that it conveniently converts any Apple-only formats like AAC to the widely compatible MP3 format. This ensures maximum compatibility with the Android device. The only downside is having to use a computer instead of wireless transfer.

Using Cloud Storage

One of the most popular ways to transfer music between an iPhone and Android device is by using a cloud storage service like Google Drive, Dropbox, or iCloud. These services allow you to upload your music library and then access it from any device by logging into your account. Some key benefits of using cloud storage include:

Google Drive lets you upload files up to 5TB for free and works great for accessing your music library on both iPhone and Android devices ( The files sync automatically across devices once uploaded.

Dropbox offers 2GB of free storage and seamless syncing across devices. Paid plans unlock more storage and features. The Dropbox mobile app has a built-in music player for streaming songs directly from the cloud.

iCloud is integrated with iOS devices and provides free 5GB storage. It can be accessed on Android using the iCloud website. Upgrading to a paid iCloud plan unlocks more storage space for music libraries.

There are also dedicated cloud music apps like CloudBeats ( and Cloud Music Player ( that connect to cloud services and let you stream your music library on both platforms.

The main downside of cloud storage is you need an internet connection to stream the music. But it provides a seamless way to access your music library from any device.

Streaming Services

There are several popular music streaming services that work across both iPhone and Android devices, allowing you to access your music library and playlists on either platform. Three of the most widely used are Spotify, Apple Music, and YouTube Music.

Spotify offers a seamless experience between iPhone and Android. You can download the Spotify app on both platforms, log into your account, and access all of your playlists, recommendations, and library. Spotify has a huge catalog of over 70 million songs and supports cross-platform playback. One limitation is you can only listen to Spotify on one device at a time per account.

Apple Music also provides an app for Android devices, allowing you to sign in and stream from your music library and customized playlists. An Apple Music subscription is required. On Android, you get access to over 90 million songs, expert-curated playlists, and online radio stations. One downside is certain exclusive content like certain albums and music videos are only available on iOS.

YouTube Music, Google’s music streaming service, enables you to upload and stream your personal music collection across Android and iOS. It also gives access to official songs, albums, playlists, and music videos. YouTube Music comes bundled with a YouTube Premium subscription. A key difference compared to dedicated music streaming apps is the focus on music videos and live performances.

Converting File Formats

The iPhone uses the AAC file format whereas many Android phones use the MP3 format. Most apps like URL that transfer music from iPhone to Android can also convert files in the process so they are compatible on the new device. However, if you need to manually convert AAC files from an iPhone to the MP3 format for your Android, you have a few options:

You can use free online AAC to MP3 converters like Convertio or Zamzar. Just upload your AAC files, set the output format to MP3, and download the converted files.

There are also free desktop converters like Freemake or Switch that you can use to batch convert AAC files to MP3. These provide more control over the MP3 settings.

Paid programs like Movavi or Audio Converter offer faster conversion speeds but are only worth it if you have a large music library to convert.

The conversion process is relatively quick and seamless. The main factors are matching the bitrates between formats and ensuring metadata like ID3 tags are preserved. Converting iPhone AAC files to the MP3 format will allow you to easily add your music to an Android device.

Potential Challenges

Transferring music between iPhone and Android can present some challenges due to DRM restrictions and metadata issues:

Apple uses Digital Rights Management (DRM) to protect music purchased through the iTunes Store. This means tracks bought on an iPhone are locked to Apple devices and cannot be played on non-Apple devices without converting the files first (Source). Attempting to transfer DRM-protected music directly from an iPhone to an Android device will likely result in unplayable tracks.

Since iPhone and Android use different metadata systems to organize music files, metadata like song title, artist, album, genre, and other tags may not transfer correctly. The metadata system on Android is less robust than on iPhone, which can lead to music files appearing disorganized when transferred over (Source). Manual editing of the metadata may be required to get music properly organized on the Android device.

Solutions exist to handle both the DRM and metadata challenges, like using converters to remove DRM protection and editing metadata tags before transferring. However, this adds extra steps to the transfer process. Users should be aware of potential formatting and organizational issues when moving their music library from an iPhone to an Android device.

Recommended Apps

There are several apps that make transferring music files between iPhone and Android seamless. Here are some of the top options:

AnyDroid is an excellent app for transferring music from iPhone to Android wirelessly. It can transfer music files along with messages, photos, and other data between the two platforms.

The MobileTrans app by Wondershare also allows direct music transfer from iPhone to Android. It works without the need for iTunes or iCloud.

For quick wireless transfers, Zapya lets users share music files between iPhone and Android instantly. It uses WiFi or Bluetooth to send files.

SHAREit is another top file sharing app for cross-platform music transfers without using internet data.

Using these apps, transferring music libraries between iPhone and Android is easy. They provide fast and reliable performance across both platforms.

Audio Quality Considerations

When comparing audio quality between iPhones and Android devices, one key factor is the file format and compression used. iPhones support lossy formats like AAC and MP3, as well as lossless formats like ALAC and FLAC. Meanwhile, Android devices support those same lossy and lossless codecs, but also support aptX and aptX HD for high-resolution Bluetooth streaming.

For lossy compression, both platforms typically use AAC or MP3 at bitrates of 256kbps or higher. At these bitrates, most people find the sound quality comparable between iOS and Android devices when using wired headphones. However, some audiophiles argue Android devices sound slightly better due to supporting aptX Bluetooth streaming up to 576kbps. iPhones are limited to AAC over Bluetooth up to 328kbps (1).

When using lossless formats like FLAC, ALAC, or aptX HD, the bitrate can reach over 1,000kbps. At this level, any differences between iOS and Android are negligible, as lossless provides audibly transparent audio quality. However, lossless files take up significantly more storage space. Unless you have high-end headphones and trained ears, lossy formats around 256kbps or higher will likely sound very good on both platforms (2).


In summary, it is possible to transfer and play iPhone music files on an Android device, but it requires converting the files or using a cloud storage service. The easiest options are to upload music to a cloud storage platform like Google Drive or Dropbox which allows access from any device. Streaming services like Spotify also make it simple to listen to your music library across platforms.

While transferring files directly through a cable is possible, it requires converting formats first. This can result in potential audio quality loss or other issues. Using a dedicated audio conversion app and testing files before deleting originals can help avoid problems.

In the end, with the right apps and preparation, you can enjoy your iPhone music library even after switching to Android. Just be aware of the limitations of certain methods. As smartphone platforms continue converging, the divides between ecosystems will likely diminish further.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *