How to have the Music app only show songs stored on your device

Thanks to the introduction of goodies like the iCloud Music Library and more recently Apple Music, your Music app on iPhone and iPad has not only turned from a luscious red color into a plain icon, but has also become decidedly more convoluted.

The main change since the coming of the cloud-based additions to the Music app? Songs no longer have to be stored locally on your device in order to be visible and playable. In case you haven’t yet found the trick hiding in plain sight to only play the songs downloaded to your device (and prevent exorbitant data charges), let’s fill you in now!

Without filtering, the iOS Music app poses one large repository for all songs procured by means of either iTunes purchase or Apple Music. Essentially, it chucks everything in the mix that’s attributable to your Apple ID, irrespective of whether or not it’s in actuality stored on your device at that point.

This is super convenient and means heaps of songs if you just want to hit the shuffle button on the go, but at the same time it spells trouble for the data plan you’re on, because not all songs on your playlist will be stored on your iPhone.

How to only show music that’s on your device in the Music app

To forestall that issue, Apple has graced us with a tab for playing it safe in all situations and only deploying the music available to you offline. Here is how to access it.

1) Open Music on your iPhone or iPad.

2) Make sure to have the Library card selected.

Apple Music library

3) Skim through the tab list at the top of your screen and find Downloaded Music.

Downloaded Music

That’s all it took! In here, everything you see is guaranteed to be stored locally on your iPhone or iPad, which means the songs are readily available for playback on airplane mode, no internet required.

Showing only music downloaded to iPhone

As easy as pie right?

For those interested, here is another handy tip on how to manage and optimize downloaded music storage on your iPhone or iPad.