Spatial audio is Apple's delivery of audio content encoded in Dolby Atmos through supported headphones and playback devices. It was announced on May 17, 2021 and became available to subscribers of Apple Music in June 2021. However, the least expensive Voice Plan of Apple Music does not support spatial audio delivery.
Audio mixed in Dolby Atmos can have individual elements spatially placed around the listener. If listening through supported headphones, accelerometers will track head movement and adjust the playback in realtime for an immersive experience.
A version of the feature for supported videos became available in September 2020 for AirPods Pro listeners using iOS 14 or iPadOS 14 after a firmware update. Support for the AirPods Max was added with its release in December 2020. Support for Macs was added in macOS 11.4 (Big Sur), which was released on May 24, 2021. In October 2021, Apple introduced the 3rd-generation AirPods with support for spatial audio. Support for spatial audio in FaceTime calls will be added with the release of macOS 12 (Monterey) on October 25, 2021.
- Apple TV 4K running tvOS 14.6 or later
- iPhone 6S or later, running iOS 14.6 or later
- iPad (6th gen), Air (3rd gen), mini (5th gen), Pro (3rd gen), or later, running iPadOS 14.6 or later
- Macs running macOS 11.4 or later (MacBook Air or Pro 2018 or later, or iMac (2021) or later when using built-in speakers)
- Apple Music announces Spatial Audio with Dolby Atmos; will bring Lossless Audio to entire catalog, Apple Inc. 2021-05-17.
- Apple introduces the Apple Music Voice Plan, Apple Inc. 2021-10-18.
- New AirPods Pro Firmware Introduces Spatial Audio Support and Automatic Switchingby Juli Clover, MacRumors. 2020-09-14.
- Listen with spatial audio for AirPods Pro and AirPods Max, Apple Support. 2021-02-08.
- About spatial audio with Dolby Atmos in Apple Music, Apple Support. 2021-06-09.
- Introducing the next generation of AirPods: The world’s most popular wireless headphones just got better, Apple Inc. 2021-10-18.
- New features available with macOS Monterey., Apple Inc. 2021-06-07. Archived 2021-06-09.
- About spatial audio with Dolby Atmos in Apple Music at Apple Support (2021-06-09)
- 3D audio effect at Wikipedia