Skip to content
Apple headphones

Is HD music coming to the iPhone in iOS 8?

Rumors of high definition audio in iOS 8 follows the likely deal by Apple to acquire Beats Electronics

Listening to music on the iPhone is about to get a lot more exciting. Following a report earlier in May that Apple were in negotiations to buy the Dr. Dre founded Beats Electronics for a potential $3.2 billion, giving Apple access to some serious audio technology, reports have now come out saying that iOS 8 will feature high definition audio playback.

In addition, new versions of its In-Ear headphones will also appear – whether Beats will have anything to do with this is uncertain, but it does seem a little too close to the bone if iOS 8 is to be unveiled at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) at the end of May. However, it’s also rumored that Apple will announce high-fidelity iTunes music downloads at WWDC, and it’s expected that these new headphones will assist this high definition playback.

Currently iOS 7, and the music app, can only support 16-bit rate audio, while high quality audio files are 24-bit, with a sampling frequency beyond 48 kHz.

This news will delight fans of Apple’s music capabilities, and show that the company, which pioneered the sky-rocketing of purchasable digital music through iTunes, still cares about audio. The news is also somewhat fresh due to the furore surrounding a potential Healthbook, and fitness tracking which is likely to appear in iOS 8 and has so far made up the bulk of rumors for the forthcoming operating system update.