It’s only been a few weeks since the latest version of Apple Music hit the Play Store, bringing along sharable music lyrics and the ability to search by record label. Apple isn’t finished adding new features to the Android version of its streaming app, though. The latest beta release adds some flare to album and playlist artwork, all while hinting at an upcoming boost in sound quality.
This new beta introduces animated artwork throughout the app, with new looks for curated mixes and a limited group of albums. Most of these banners can be found throughout stations made by Apple itself, like “Rap Life” or “Today’s Hits,” but it does seem like these may be coming to new releases as well. St. Vincent’s new album Daddy’s Home uses custom artwork in place of the usual cover, as you can see below.
While that’s the only major visual change, 9to5Google managed to find hints about Apple’s rumored HiFi streaming tier inside the APK. The beta for iOS 14.6 already drew attention to some hidden options regarding lossless audio, which the new code within Apple Music seems to match up against well. This APK contains language for enabling higher quality music, along with warnings for how much data the app will end up using over time.
It does seem like there’ll be some differences between how lossless audio will work on Android compared to Apple’s own devices. The Android beta’s code only mentions lossless and hi-fi lossless, while iOS 14.6 includes support for both Dolby Audio and Atmos.
All signs are pointing to a launch scheduled for next Tuesday for this premium streaming tier. AppleTrack and YouTuber Luke Miani have reported that Apple Music’s lossless plan is set to debut on May 18th, alongside a new set of AirPods. Coincidentally, Tuesday is also the kickoff date for Google I/O, where we finally expect to see the official announcement of the Pixel Buds A-series.
If you’re looking to check out Apple Music 3.6, you can join the beta program through the app’s Play Store listing below or grab the APK from APK Mirror.