I have an Apple Music subscription and iTunes 12.2 on an HTPC (Windows) which his my primary music player. I want to use my iPhone to control what I play. I've tried the Apple Remote app, which works, but it only allows me to choose music that I've added to my library. It does not allow me to look up an arbitrary song from the cloud (whatever the term for this is - it's the functionality under the "New" section of iTunes on OSX) and play it from the Remote. If I want to do that I have to do it directly on HTPC, which is not acceptable.

Basically I just want Spotify Connect functionality for Apple Music. If it's from the Remote app, great. If it's from the Music app, great. What has been the most successful approach from others with a similar need?


5 Answers 5


In 2022 - Siri and Apple Watch and AirPods and HomePod are now the primary players for me. I can and will use my Mac and iPad and iPhone for some tasks, but once I have my playlists, I can ask for songs or artists or playlists and no longer need an iPhone to direct the music. My how things have changed in a few short years.

I don’t think you can merge Spotify and Apple music in an effective manner, so you might have to choose your champion.

In 2018 - AirPlay and AirPlay 2 are the premier ways to play Apple Music. Most people will want to just connect their speakers to a computer or device and use Siri / AirPlay to queue up music.

If we go in a time machine back to 2015 - the situation was a little less clear, but using iPhone and Apple TV was still the best way to stream music over WiFi from many controllers.

(much of what follows is wrong and/or outdated, but were possible solutions at a past point in time)

Your iPhone is a first tier player in Apple Music. It would be better to just play the music on your phone rather than monkey with "remote". Send the music over the network to the PC rather than sending the remote commands over the network to the PC.

Remote options are:

  • Wait for Apple's remote to get updated for the hot newness
  • Get a VNC/RDC remote and control the PC (janky - but does 100% what the PC can do without needing anything else on the PC end) screen directly.
  • Third party remotes like Rowmote Pro (I say like since I have a handful of iPhone to Mac remotes - just can't recommend specific PC ones)

The iPhone can AirPlay to a PC quite easily with software on the PC such as AirFoil for Windows and you're set with Apple's full fledged iOS music controls but taking advantage of the PC to speaker connection you have already set up.

Depending on how the PC outputs to speakers, you could also add hardware ($5 to $65) to get the sound from either the PC or the iOS devices to the speakers. You don't need to do that as there are several workable software solutions.

  • I'm going to try the Airplay solution. It would be nice to not have to install a separate utility but it may be the best available option right now. Commented Jul 3, 2015 at 3:56
  • "Your iPhone is a first tier player in Apple Music." I hate that, I want to forget my phone when I play music but have the ability to control the iMac (no screen) that play from any devices. Bluetooth is a no go, quality is not enough for home speaker and when you change room it cute the signal.
    – gagarine
    Commented Oct 23, 2021 at 13:48
  • 1
    Thank you for commenting. Almost all of this is dated. The first tier player is now Siri and HomePod for me @gagarine - I can’t believe the quality of AirPods and Bluetooth and lossless audio now. Also, the HomePods (discontinued) and the new small ones are amazing for my needs and space. Jazz, classical, folk, acoustic, rock, electronic, shoegaze - you name it, I’m happy listening on Apple Music without the phone needed and it avoids me needing a windows solution - as the OP asks here.
    – bmike
    Commented Oct 23, 2021 at 19:19
  • 1
    @bmike I'm leading in the direction to have an old iPad directly connected to my amplifier USB entry. I like the ideas to have one device that just do play music. I cannot Siri, I have a very bad memory for name ;) and listen to hundred of bands.
    – gagarine
    Commented Oct 25, 2021 at 13:09

Not much of a solution, but it's worth noting that the last update to the Remote app (4.2.2) was released on May 21st, before the announcement of Apple Music. It wouldn't surprise me that a future update would address this unacceptable issue.

Apple Remote app

If it does not, I would immediately destroy my iPhone and buy a Zune.


iTunes allows you to send Audio/Music from the new Music service to multiple Air Play speakers. The Music App on the phone only allows one speaker. Without using a third party product like Airfoil or third party remote on a iDevice there is no way to control the Music service via iTunes natively within the Apple ecosystem. This is limiting for people that have set up iTunes at the heart of their multi speaker audio system. iPhone only act as remotes in my house, never the source.

Hopefully they will update remote quickly to give us this ability. It's the first thing I tried to do with the new service, and it is holding me back from using it more.

  • 1
    I should add that the remote app on the iWatch is also way behind in features than the Music app on the iWatch. Remote appears to be the poor cousin of Apple apps.
    – Harland
    Commented Jul 3, 2015 at 12:21
  • This does not provide an answer to the question. To critique or request clarification from an author, leave a comment below their post - you can always comment on your own posts, and once you have sufficient reputation you will be able to comment on any post.
    – Ruskes
    Commented Jul 3, 2015 at 18:51
  • "the" poor cousin? I wish. Commented Jul 4, 2015 at 9:20
  • @Buscar웃SD This is actually a great answer to the question. AirPlay is probably the best workaround to achieve what I wanted with the current state of things. Commented Jul 11, 2015 at 15:06

No. A feature equivalent to Spotify Connect is currently not available for Apple Music.

For other remote options currently avaiable, see bmike's answer.

  • however it will possibly be added to either itunes or the remote app at some point; if or when is up to Apple to decide though.
    – ssssaaaa
    Commented Dec 6, 2015 at 15:31

I have Itunes 12.2.0. I can play a radio station on Apple Music Radio and using the remote app by Apple, I can control my mac's iTunes playing Apple Music. So yes it is possible.

  • 1
    Yes, that's possible, but it's not what I'm talking about. I don't know the correct term for it - to be able to look up a particular song that you don't own in the Apple Music cloud and play that. The radio feature you are referring to is Pandora-like - you don't get to choose what plays. Commented Jul 4, 2015 at 4:01

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