Friday, December 31, 2021

Siri Can No Longer Rate Songs

Jean Leon:

Rating songs serves as a sorting method for the user’s music library. In this way, you can sort your songs according to the ones you like the most.

Apple made it easy to use this feature with support for Siri voice commands. Then, users can rate their music even without having to touch their phones. But, this is not working properly now.

Via Andrew Abernathy:

[…] a big loss for me, especially as AFAICT there is no API on iOS for rating songs, so no apps support it. I have a large library, mostly rated, and I use those ratings; I wish Apple hadn’t become so hostile to it.


Update (2022-01-03): Tim Hardwick:

Yet reports on Reddit, Apple Support Communities, and the MacRumors forums suggest that the function is not available in iOS 15 or iOS 15.1, and has remained out of action in the latest iOS 15.2 point release, issued in December. Instead of carrying out the request, Siri responds with “I’m Sorry, I’m afraid I can’t do that,” or some variation thereof.

It’s unclear if this is an intended change by Apple, or an intermittent server-side problem that has arisen since the release of iOS 15 , but it’s worth noting that iOS 15 and iOS 15.2 both made functional changes to Siri , in relation to Apple Music interoperability and more generally at the system level.

6 Comments RSS · Twitter

Anonymous Coward

What’s the over/under on the year that Apple removes the ability to manage non-Apple Music libraries from the Music app?

I'm with the earlier comment. It seems like Apple has a user-hostile conflict of interest: anything that lets the user do their own curation of their own content is in direct conflict with the interests of Apple Music, where controlling and curating ON BEHALF OF (supposedly) the user is more important than the user actually having control. The user now only has some influence, but not actual control.
I saw where this was going years ago as Apple made it harder and harder to actually curate my music library and mostly gave up. I don't have the time to fight Apple's user-hostile design changes. I just hope that I can play the music I want when I have something specific in mind. Other than that, I'm at the mercy of the algorithm. I don't have the time and effort it would take to fight it. Frustrating, and has been one of many factors eroding my respect in Apple's choices regarding human-computer interface design.

There’s an app, StarTone, that can rate songs, so it must be possible for third party apps to do it.

Andrew Abernathy

Billy: thanks for the pointer to StarTone. Checking out its settings, it appears to me that its ratings might be custom, and you have to have the Mac version of the app to them sync those ratings with iTunes? I've purchased it and will explore it more when I have some time to experiment on the desktop.

Siri is susceptible to nonsense like this. For example: "Hey Siri: battery" on my (series 5) Apple Watch used to report the battery %age for years, until WatchOS 8. That update killed the function. "I’m Sorry, I’m afraid I can’t do that." But, to my ingrained habit's relief, it came back just as inexplicably in the latest minor OS update.

Two years ago I did a trial of alternative OSes (Linuxes, even Haiku!) to see if I could make the switch. (TLDR, I couldn’t make it stick.) Part of my strategy was to move my media from local applications to networked applications.

I installed Plex and Piwigo on a Intel NUC. Plex with Plexamp mobile app has been great, I can’t recommend this set up highly enough to anyone who is capable of administering it. Full control of my own media, no interruptions with ads or interstitials of any kind.

A more wholesome Apple would have morphed iTunes into something like Plex, and have built it into a Time Capsule.

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