One of the best parts about Apple Music is how you can discover, create, and share playlists, but what if you already have playlists on other services like Spotify and just want to replicate those here?
Unfortunately, Apple didn’t introduce an easy way to import playlists. So if you have been using Spotify and love their many automatic playlists or the ones you custom-curated, the only way to import them to your Apple Music collection is via third-party apps.
It’s been a whole year since Apple Music came out, so developers have been able to make good tools to import your playlists into Apple Music. All the apps are paid, unfortunately, but they do let you try out the software for free first. Of all the options I tried, the best is Stamp.
- Works on: Windows, Mac, iOS
- Price: Free for limited use, $9.99 for unlimited Premium
- Imports from: Spotify, Rdio, Apple Music, Google Play Music, Deezer, YouTube, CSV files
- Exports to: Apple Music, Google Play Music, Spotify, CSV files
Stamp is the easiest and most feature-packed service to use if you want to transfer your playlists and songs from one streaming service to another. You can use it on both desktop platforms and iOS, but I would suggest the desktop app since the iOS app causes more headaches than it’s worth.
Using Stamp to transfer from Spotify to Apple Music is ridiculously simple. Make sure you have iTunes installed on your computer and are signed in with your Apple Music account. Then, shut down iTunes and start Stamp. Run through the tutorial to set it up. You have to grant it network access because it creates a proxy server to listen in on what iTunes is doing.
Stamp will then ask you to select the service you want to import playlists from, and log into it. Next select the destination service — Apple Music in this case. Follow the instructions and you’ll be ready to start transferring!
Stamp worked perfectly. It matched the songs from my Spotify to those available in Apple Music. It imported the playlist names and the order as well. I can’t stress how seamless and smooth the whole operation was.
The free basic version of Stamp only moves 10 songs per session or one playlist, whichever comes first. In my tests, a “session” wasn’t over for 24 hours. So that’s 10 songs or one playlist in a day that you can transfer from any service to Apple Music. If that seems limited, you can pay $9.99 for the Premium version, which has unlimited songs or playlists.
The kicker here is the number of services supported by Stamp. Not only do you get Spotify support, but you can also transfer music playlists made on YouTube or any playlist from any app saved in a CSV file. This expands your options greatly.
Plus, it also works the other way around. You can take your Apple Music playlists and send them to Spotify, or convert them into CSV files for safe keeping. Stamp makes Apple Music better on both Mac and iOS.
Note: You can’t use the same Premium account for both desktop and mobile. You need to buy them separately. So I’d advise buying the Premium desktop version.
There are two major competitors to Stamp at the moment. They’re both good apps in their own right, but after testing I would put my money in Stamp.
- Works on: Mac
- Price: Free for limited use, $7.99 for Premium
- Imports from: Spotify, Rdio
- Exports to: Apple Music
Move to Apple is freakishly similar to Stamp, but let’s remember that MtA came first. Download the trial app before you decide to pay. Then the process is just like Stamp. Unfortunately, MtA supports importing only from Spotify and Rdio, and can’t export your Apple Music playlists. For two bucks more, Stamp offers several more features, but in case you only want to transfer playlists and songs from Spotify to Apple Music, then you can save those two bucks by using Move to Apple.
Download: Move to Apple for Mac (Free)
- Works on: iOS
- Price: Free for limited use, $1.99 for Pro
- Imports from: Deezer, Spotify, Apple Music
- Exports to: Deezer, Spotify, Apple Music
SongShift’s price makes it really tempting, and the free version actually lets you transfer any playlist with up to 100 songs, which should be enough for most users. Plus, it supports cross-transferring between Deezer, Spotify, and Apple Music. But it doesn’t actually work as well as Stamp or MtA.
The biggest problem is that it doesn’t import the playlist itself but only the songs. When you’re importing, you get an option to “Import into Library” or “Import into Playlist”. If you import into the library, it will take your Spotify playlist’s songs and simply add those to your Apple Music Library—not the playlist itself. If you import into a playlist, then you will have to create that new playlist on Apple Music before you start the import process. That said, if you are willing to put up with these inconveniences, then SongShift is the most economical option of the three.
Download: SongShift for iOS 9.3 and up (Free)
Note: This app requires Apple iPhone 5s or newer devices.
The Common Problem With Stamp and Others
While everything is generally smooth, there is one common problem with all of these apps. Apparently, they need to create a proxy on your computer network to be able to see what iTunes is telling its servers. In that process, it can muck up your regular Internet access.
Usually, this won’t happen, but it did happen in my tests and it’s a frequently asked question for all services. In case you can’t access the Internet after you’re done using the app, go to your network connections and into the LAN proxy settings to disable any proxy there.
Have You Switched to Apple Music?
Have you subscribed to Apple Music yet or are you still using Spotify or Tidal? If you’re a non-US subscriber, we’d love to know your thoughts on it too. For example, here in India, Apple Music is quite cheap and costs only $2 per month, which makes it a better purchase than other competing services.
A year after its launch, where do you stand on Apple Music?