How to Share Music to the iPad

Streaming Music to the iPad Saves Storage Space!

A great and easy way to save storage space on your iPad is to limit the amount of media — music, movies, etc. — you have stored on it.   When the iPad was first introduced, the average app didn't take up much space, but as we see more apps cross the 1 GB threshold, those of us with 16 GB and 32 GB iPads can feel the crunch.   One solution is to stream music to your iPad rather than store it locally.

 

There are several ways to stream music to your iPad and remember, if you have certain "must-have" songs or a favorite playlist, you can always store a subset of your music locally to make sure you always have it available.   

How to Expand the Storage on Your iPad

iTunes Match and iCloud Music Library

Apple Music may get a lot of the press these days, but if you already own a large music library, iTunes Match may be your best bet.  iTunes Match costs $24.99 a year, which is a nice bit of savings when compared to Apple Music's $119.88 yearly price tag.  (We'll cover more on Apple Music later.)

iTunes Match reads your entire iTunes music library and allows you to access and stream it from the cloud. This is a great way to listen to your entire library anywhere you have access to the Internet without taking up space on your iPad.   You can subscribe to iTunes Match on Apple's website.

How to Turn On iTunes Match on Your iPad

iTunes Home Sharing

Don't want to pay a fee to access your music?  There's actually a free version of iTunes Match, but it has limitations.  Home Sharing is a feature you can set up in iTunes on your PC that will let you share your music (and movies and other media) to your iPad, iPhone, Apple TV or even other PCs.

  Here's the catch: you can only share music across your local network.

This means you won't be able to listen to music in the car, at the hotel, in the coffee shop or anywhere else where you don't have access to your local Wi-Fi network.   This means it might not be the best solution if you frequently use your iPad away from home.

But the iPad is often a home-only device, with many of us mainly taking it out of the house only when we go on vacation.   And we can always load a bit of music and movies onto the iPad before we leave the house and delete it when we get back home.  So Home Sharing can be a great solution for many of us.

Find out how to set up Home Sharing on your PC and iPad.

Apple Music

Apple recently launched a subscription-based music service called Apple Music.  It is essentially Apple's answer to Spotify, and while it is still relatively new, it is already taking a bit out of the subscription music business.

If you love music and don't have a huge music library already filled without your favorite tunes, or if you find yourself buying a new album almost every month, Apple Music can be a great deal.  You can't stream everything -- not all artists have signed a contract with Apple's service -- but you can stream a lot.

  

Apple Music also comes with a radio station with an actual DJ and a number of algorithm-based radio stations that play random music within a genre.   The songs in Apple Music can be downloaded to play while offline, added to playlists, and pretty much, they act like any other song. 

How to Use Apple Music on the iPad

Pandora, Spotify and other Streaming Solutions

And let's not forget all of the other streaming solutions.  There are a number of streaming apps that don't require a subscription, so if you are a music-lover on a budget, there are still great way to get your music fix.   Pandora Radio is known for creating custom radio stations based on a song or an artist, and iHeartRadio is a great way to listen to actual radio stations streamed across the Internet.

 

The Best Streaming Music Apps for the iPad