If you use Apple Music, you already know how convenient it is to have such a vast library of music at your fingertips at any given time.
But have you ever been listening in the background, come across a great song, and then not been able to figure out what it was so you can listen to it again? This is especially common if you’re listening to a playlist curated by someone else, or browsing recommendations for you by Apple Music.
In this article, we look at how Apple Music keeps track of your listening history so that when this happens to you, you can find out exactly what song you just listened to!
Here’s How Listening History Works on Apple Music:
Apple Music does not have a detailed listening history you can view. However, you can view a handful of recently played songs by tapping “coming up” to view tracks that will be played next. This view also shows recently played tracks; simply scroll down to view them.
Is There a Way to See Your Play History on Apple Music?
You can view recently played tracks, but this functionality is somewhat limited.
If you’re hoping for a far-reaching, detailed record of everything you’ve listened to for a lengthy span of time, like how your internet browsing history usually works, you’re out of luck.
However, there is a somewhat limited way to view tracks you’ve recently played; just don’t expect to see more than a handful.
To access this limited record, you’ll want to tap the “coming up” option while you’re listening to music.
As you might expect, this will show you what’s coming next in your listening queue; the next songs in the album or playlist you’re listening to at the moment.
However, the list goes two ways; while you can see the tracks coming next when you open the view, you can also scroll down to see what you listened to before the track you’re on now.
For a slightly less limited record, there is one other way you can check what you’ve been listening to:
- Navigate to the “for you” section in Apple Music.
- You should then find a “recently played” section.
- Hit the “see all” prompt next to it. Here, you should now see a list of tracks you’ve played recently.
What Data and Stats Does Apple Music Store?
It’s impossible to say exactly what kind of data Apple keeps on you, because companies like Apple, Google, Microsoft, and others tend to be tight-lipped about how they’re tracking you.
Data harvesting is ubiquitous on the internet, and if you’re signed up to basically any subscription service, you’re paying for it not only with your actual money but with your personal data too.
It’s safe to assume that among the things Apple tracks are detailed records of everything you’ve listened to on their platform, as well as how you interact with the app in general.
Data like this is used to improve the apps and services, like calibrating Apple Music’s recommendations to accurately suggest music users will like based on what they’ve listened to and to curate playlists.
Unfortunately for you, this kind of data collection is pretty one-sided; while we know Apple harvests and uses this data to improve its services, it does not easily make it available to you.
How Far Back Does Apple Music’s History Go?
Well, that depends on whether we’re talking about the history you can access, or the history Apple keeps track of behind-the-scenes and uses to improve its services.
For the latter, we can assume it goes all the way back; Apple can keep records of every song you’ve ever listened to, but you don’t get to see this information for yourself.
In the case of the information you do get to see, it further depends on whether you’re scrolling backward in the “coming next” view or looking at the more detailed history under “for you.”
The “coming next” view is the more limited of the two, showing only a handful or so of the songs you listened to before whatever track you’re listening to now.
For a more detailed and far-reaching view of your own listening history, you’ll want to tap “see all” next to the “recently played” section of Apple Music’s “for you” feature.
Even this view seems to be limited, however.
We cannot say for sure exactly how far back it goes, but considering it only tracks “recently played” music and not an entire history, it’s safe to assume it doesn’t go back forever.
Can You Turn Off History Tracking on Apple Music?
It’s impossible to prevent Apple from tracking your use of their apps and services; they will collect data on you as long as you’re using their services.
However, if you just don’t want to see any history tracked yourself, you can, in fact, turn the setting off.
- You’ll simply want to go to settings on your iOS device, then find “Music.”
- Now you should be able to find an option called “use listening history” and toggle it off.
Don’t let this talk of Apple tracking your usage of the app cause you to worry about whether Apple Music is safe to use. It is safe, and we even have a full article dedicated to helping you understand more about Apple Music and online safety.
Can You Reset Your History Data?
Again, you won’t be able to get Apple to remove the data they have on you, but if you just want to reset your listening history to get better recommendations, you can do that.
There are various methods to achieve this, but the simplest is probably to follow the steps in the previous heading, with one additional step.
Once you’ve turned “use listening history” off, just turn it back on again.
With any luck, this should clear your listening history, but re-enable the feature, so it starts tracking your history again, from a clean slate.