The company is also renaming its 3D audio catalog to Spatial Audio – following Apple’s marketing lead – and will make those tracks available on any pair of headphones and other devices that support Alexa Cast, the protocol for Amazon’s proprietary wireless broadcast. Previously, Amazon’s 3D Audio Catalog was only available on Echo Studio, Amazon’s $ 200 high-fidelity speaker powered by Alexa, and Sony’s RA5000 and RA3000 speakers.
Amazon Music will be the exclusive home of a handful of Spatial Audio albums and performances, including Bicep’s second album He is, and Mercure – Acte 1 (Amazon Music Live), a five track EP by Imagine Dragons featuring live tracks from the band’s recent album mixed in Dolby Atmos. The EP was recorded on the rooftop of Amazon Music’s Brooklyn office.
“We recorded our new album Mercury – Act I with Rick Rubin at Shangri-La Studios in Malibu, and it’s great to have a new possibility for people to experience the space and depth of these rooms through these new Dolby Atmos mixes, âsaid Imagine Dragons in a statement. “We’re excited to share our first live acoustic EP of some of these tracks, which we recorded with Amazon Music.”
Amazon has seen substantial growth in its high-fidelity service over the past 18 months, with subscriptions to the now-defunct HD standalone subscription doubling last May, just before HD’s merger with Amazon Music Unlimited. The streaming service now offers 75 million songs in HD (16-bit / 44.1 kHz or CD quality) and over 7 million songs in Ultra HD, which exceeds CD quality and can reach 24-bit / 192 kHz
AndrÃ© Stapleton, Amazon Music’s global head of artist and record label relations, said the HD mark will be gone now that the high fidelity option is the default for all unlimited users.
” We drive [HD] straight into Amazon Music Unlimited, so we don’t even really need it, âStapleton says. âThis will be our baseline going forward. Everyone will have access to the highest quality audio within the standard level. It’s incredibly exciting to be able to expand our footprint to a much larger audience.
High-fidelity music and Spatial Audio grabbed the attention of major streaming services in 2021. In June, Apple launched its own version of both offerings in June, and Spotify announced in February that it will launch its own high-fidelity tier. before the end of the year.