If you’ve uploaded music to Google’s Play Music before, there’s a good chance that you already know how to download songs for offline playback. But if you’re not familiar with how it works, this should clear things up.
All you really need is a Google (or Gmail) account and a phone or tablet. Signing up is completely free, unless you want to sign up for Google’s All Access plan which gives you unlimited music streaming for $9.99 per month. However, if you’re like me, and already have your own library of music, importing it into Play Music takes only a few short steps.
Upon importing your library of songs, you’ll want to make sure that you download the music for offline playback. Otherwise, listening to the music will go against your data plan, and you certainly don’t want that.
This can be done with music of your own and/or music that you obtained from Google’s paid subscription service. Just note that once you stop your All Access plan, the music downloaded for free from the Play Store will be removed from your device(s).
Music you upload to Play Music is stored in the cloud. But don’t be frightened, there’s a very easy way to solve this so that music won’t need an internet connection to play. It’s so easy you can have it set to automatically begin downloading music upon uploading. Just remember music that you download takes up your device’s storage unlike music that’s just in the cloud which doesn’t. In this step-by-step guide I’m going to show you how to download music for offline playback.
So here you are with all your music inside the Play Music application. In order to download music for offline playback, tap the menu icon in the top left corner of the main Listen Now menu. Make sure you’re logged into the account that contains all your music. Inside the navigation drawer select the option Music library.
Here you’ll see your playlists, if you have created any, along with recently added music which is under an auto-created playlist called last added. You can also swipe over to view your music sorted by artist, album or genre. And of course, the option to see a list of all your songs is present here as well.
If you want to download just one song, select the three dots located to the right of the song title and select the download button. Soon after, you’ll get a notification saying that a song is downloading.
Another way you can tell that it’s working is by looking to the right of the title for a loading circle. This will slowly fill up orange and show a check mark confirming when the download is complete. The same thing can be done by artist, album or playlist. If the song is not downloaded, you’ll see an empty circle with a download icon inside, which will be near the top next to the menu button.
If you want to download all the music in your library, head to the settings in the navigation drawer instead of going into Music library. Scroll down to where it says Downloading in orange letters.
Then toggle Auto-download to on. This will begin downloading your entire music library. You may also want to toggle on Download only on Wi-Fi. This will prevent your device from downloading music when on cellular, this way you don’t get slammed with data charges. By selecting these options, any music added from your connected devices whether that be your phone, tablet, PC or Mac, will automatically download for offline playback.
If you aren’t sure whether a song downloaded, selecting the loading circle or view the Downloaded only section in the navigation drawer. You could always toggle on Downloaded only, which will only play the songs you have downloaded on that device. Enabling Stream only on Wi-Fi in the settings will perform the same function.
Another great option is selecting Refresh in the settings, this will double-check to make sure all your music is in sync. You can always turn Auto-download off if you’re running low on storage space. Just be smart and know that the songs you add after this option is turned off will stream and use up your data. You can check the status of your downloads under Manage downloads, which is also located in the settings. Signing out will remove all downloaded music stored on that device.
So that’s pretty much all you need to know to download music for offline playback. The process is very similar on PC and Mac, so you shouldn’t experience many issues. But if you do, feel free to drop a comment below and a member of our team will try their best in assisting you. You can also view Google’s help forum or get in contact with a member of their support team if need be.