How do I get Apple Music to use iCloud storage?

What is Apple Music?

Apple Music is a music and video streaming service developed by Apple Inc. It offers over 90 million songs to stream or download, along with tens of thousands of playlists, music videos, live radio stations, and more. Apple Music works across iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, Apple Watch, Mac, HomePod, CarPlay, PC, and Android devices.

An Apple Music subscription provides access to the full Apple Music catalog and features. This includes the ability to download songs, albums, and playlists for offline listening. Downloads are stored locally on each device.

What is iCloud?

iCloud is Apple’s cloud storage service. It allows users to store data such as photos, documents, and music in the cloud and access it from any Apple device logged into the same iCloud account.

iCloud provides each user with 5GB of free storage space. Additional storage can be purchased as a monthly subscription.

For Apple Music subscribers, iCloud can be used to store downloaded music and make it available across devices. This provides access to your Apple Music library from any device, even when offline.

How does Apple Music work with iCloud?

When you download music from Apple Music to your device, you have the option to store the downloads in iCloud rather than locally on that device.

Enabling iCloud Music Library in your Apple Music settings allows your downloads and personal library to be stored in iCloud rather than taking up space on your device.

With iCloud Music Library enabled:

– Downloads are saved directly to iCloud instead of device storage
– Your entire personal music collection can be accessed from the cloud
– Your library is made available across all your devices automatically
– You can listen to your music offline as downloads are cached on each device

This means you don’t have to manually transfer downloads between devices or re-download them when getting a new device. Your Apple Music content is seamlessly available from iCloud on any device logged into your Apple ID.

How to enable iCloud Music Library

Follow these steps to enable iCloud Music Library for your Apple Music downloads:

1. Open the Settings app on your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch.

2. Tap on your name at the top of Settings.

3. Select iCloud.

4. Scroll down and tap Music.

5. Toggle on iCloud Music Library.

This will shift where Apple Music downloads are saved from now on. Existing downloads will remain stored locally until transferred to iCloud.

You can manually manage your iCloud Music Library content and downloads from the Music section within Settings. Toggle on “Show All Music” to view the full contents of your iCloud Music collection.

Automatically sync Apple Music downloads to iCloud

In addition to enabling iCloud Music Library, you can configure your device to automatically sync new Apple Music downloads to iCloud:

1. Go to Settings > [Your Name] > iCloud.

2. Under Music, toggle on Sync Library.

With this enabled, any new music you download from Apple Music will be automatically saved to your iCloud Music Library instead of device storage.

This ensures all your Apple Music content stays up to date across all devices instantly via iCloud. You don’t have to manually transfer downloads or re-download them on new devices.

Manually manage iCloud Music Library

You can manually manage which songs and albums are stored in your iCloud Music Library:

1. Open the Music app.

2. Tap the Library tab.

3. Tap Edit in the top right.

4. Select the downloads you want to remove from iCloud by tapping the circle next to them.

5. Tap Delete from Library.

This will delete them from iCloud only, not from your device. Disable iCloud Music Library to manage device storage separately.

Listen to Apple Music offline

All your iCloud Music Library content can be accessed offline:

– Downloads will be cached on each device for offline playback.

– Tap the cloud icon next to a song, album or playlist to download it to your device.

– Use the Download button on radio stations, playlists and albums to save them locally.

– Disable Sync Library and manually transfer downloads via Manage Storage in Settings.

Downloaded Apple Music content remains available offline until deleted, even without an internet connection.

Does Apple Music use iCloud storage space?

Yes, any music you download from Apple Music or add to your iCloud Music Library will be counted towards your overall iCloud storage allowance.

The amount of space used will depend on:

– The number of songs downloaded for offline listening.

– Any albums or playlists saved for offline access.

– Your personal music collection added to iCloud Music Library.

An average 3-4 minute song downloads as approx. 5-7MB. So 100 downloaded songs would use 500MB-700MB of storage.

While Apple Music downloads do use iCloud storage, it’s an efficient way to make your music collection available across devices without needing huge local storage on each device.

Check iCloud storage usage

To see how much iCloud storage space you have available and how it’s being used:

1. Open Settings and tap your name.

2. Select iCloud.

3. Review the storage graph and breakdown of usage by app.

This will show your total available space, used space, and a color-coded graph of which apps are using storage.

Tap Manage Storage to see more details on storage used per app, including by Apple Music.

Upgrade iCloud storage

If you find your iCloud storage space is being used up too quickly, you can upgrade your iCloud plan for more storage:

– 50GB for $0.99 per month
– 200GB for $2.99 per month
– 2TB for $9.99 per month

Upgrading allows more space for Apple Music downloads, photos, device backups and other iCloud content.

To upgrade your iCloud storage:

1. Go to Settings > [your name] > iCloud > Manage Storage > Change Storage Plan
2. Choose your desired storage tier plan
3. Enter payment details and confirm upgrade

Remove Apple Music downloads

If iCloud space is limited, you can remove some Apple Music downloads manually:

1. Open the Music app
2. Tap Library > Downloads
3. Swipe left on a download and tap Delete

This will delete the downloaded song or album from your iCloud Music Library and device storage, freeing up space.

To delete multiple downloads together:

1. Tap Edit > Select items to remove
2. Tap Delete from Library

Disable iCloud Music Library

If you don’t want Apple Music taking up iCloud storage space, you can disable iCloud Music Library:

1. Go to Settings > [Your Name] > iCloud > Music
2. Toggle off iCloud Music Library

This will stop syncing your Apple Music downloads and personal collection to iCloud. All content will remain stored locally on each device instead.

Use iTunes Match for cloud music storage

An alternative to iCloud Music Library is iTunes Match. This stores your personal music collection in iCloud, separate from Apple Music.

iTunes Match costs $24.99/year and provides:

– Cloud access to your personal library
– Songs are matched via digital fingerprint, not uploaded
– Up to 100,000 songs can be stored in the cloud
– Music available on all your devices

While it doesn’t include Apple Music downloads, iTunes Match provides more affordable cloud storage for your personal collection if iCloud space is limited.


While convenient, storing Apple Music downloads in iCloud does use your allocated cloud storage space. Regularly monitor your iCloud usage under device Settings.

Upgrade your iCloud storage plan if needed or manually remove unneeded downloads. Disable iCloud Music Library if you don’t want music taking up your iCloud allowance.

iTunes Match provides an alternate option focused just on cloud storage for your personal music collection. With some storage management, you can effectively use iCloud to conveniently access Apple Music across all your devices.

iCloud Storage Plan Price (per month) Storage Space
Free $0 5GB
50GB $0.99 50GB
200GB $2.99 200GB
2TB $9.99 2TB