Latest 1.0.1
License Proprietary
Platforms ios 9.0, requires ARC
Frameworks SpotifyiOS, Foundation, UIKit

Spotify iOS SDK

The Spotify iOS framework allows your application to interact with the Spotify app running in the background on a user’s device. Capabilities include authorizing, getting metadata for the currently playing track and context, as well as issuing playback commands.

Please Note: By using Spotify developer tools you accept our Developer Terms of Use.

The Spotify iOS SDK is a set of lightweight objects that connect with the Spotify app and let you control it while all the heavy lifting of playback is offloaded to the Spotify app itself. The Spotify app takes care of playback, networking, offline caching and OS music integration, leaving you to focus on your user experience. Moving from your app to the Spotify app and vice versa is a streamlined experience where playback and metadata always stay in sync.

Key Features

Filing Bugs


How Do Remote Calls Work?

Terms of Use


Key Features

  • Playback is always in sync with Spotify app
  • Playback, networking, and caching is all accounted for by the Spotify app
  • Works offline and online and does not require Web API calls to get metadata for player state
  • Allows authentication through the Spotify app so users don’t have to type in their credentials

Filing Bugs

We love feedback from the developer community, so please feel free to file missing features or bugs over at our issue tracker.
Make sure you search existing issues before creating new ones.

Open bug tickets | Open feature requests


The Spotify iOS framework requires a deployment target of iOS 9 or higher. The
following architectures are supported: armv7, armv7s and arm64 for devices,
i386 and x86_64 for the iOS Simulator. Bitcode is also supported.



  • SPTAppRemoteAlbum
  • SPTAppRemoteArtist
  • SPTAppRemoteLibraryState
  • SPTAppRemotePlaybackRestrictions
  • SPTAppRemotePlaybackOptions
  • SPTAppRemotePlayerState
  • SPTAppRemoteTrack
  • SPTAppRemoteContentItem
  • SPTAppRemoteUserCapabilities
  • SPTAppRemoteImageRepresentable
  • SPTConfiguration
  • SPTSession
  • SPTError


The main entry point for authentication if more scopes than app-remote-control are required.


The main entry point to connect to the Spotify app and retrieve API components. Use this to establish, monitor, and terminate the connection.


Send playback related commands such as:

  • Play track by URI
  • Resume/pause playback
  • Skip forwards and backwards
  • Seek to position
  • Set shuffle on/off
  • Request player state
  • Request player context
  • Subscribe to player state


Fetch an image for a SPTAppRemoteImageRepresentable


Fetch/subscribe/set user-related data such as:

  • Fetch and/or subscribe to SPTAppRemoteUserCapabilities
  • Determine if a user can play songs on demand (Premium vs Free)
  • Add/remove/check if a song is in a user’s library


Fetch recommended content for the user.

How do App Remote calls work?

When you interact with any of the App Remote API’s you pass in a SPTAppRemoteCallback block that gets invoked with either the expected result item or an NSError if the operation failed. The block is triggered after the command was received by the Spotify app (or if the connection could not be made).

Here is an example using the SPTRemotePlayerAPI to skip a song:

[appRemote.playerAPI skipToNext:^(id  _Nullable result, NSError * _Nullable error) {
    if (error) {
        // Operation failed
    } else {
        // Operation succeeded

Tutorial and Examples

We provide a few sample projects to help you get started with the iOS Framework in the DemoProjects folder. See the Readme in the DemoProjects folder for more information on what each sample does.

Authentication and Authorization

To communicate with the Spotify app your application will need to get a user’s permission to control playback first. This can be done in two ways:

  1. By using SPTSessionManager and requesting the app-remote-control scope. This approach is useful if you need to request more scopes or an access token for other purposes, for example to communicate with the Spotify Web API. Our iOS SDK Tutorial provides instructions and examples. You will need to set up your own backend servers to complete OAuth token swaps with your client secret.
  2. By using built-in authorization for App Remote. To do that you will need to request authorization view when connecting to Spotify. The framework will automatically request the app-remote-control scope and show the auth view if user hasn’t agreed to it yet. It’s currently not possible to request additional scopes using this method. The Tutorial below contains an example on how to use this method.

Terms of Use

Note that by using Spotify developer tools, you accept our Developer Terms of Use.

Included Open Source Libraries


This tutorial leads you step-by-step through the creation of a simple app that uses the Spotify iOS SDK to play an audio track and subscribe to player state. It will walk through multiple authorization flow options though you might only need to use the built in app-remote-control authorization flow based on your needs.

Prepare Your Environment

Follow these steps to make sure you are prepared to start coding.

  • Download the Spotify iOS framework from the "Clone or download" button at the top of this page, and unzip it.
  • Install the latest version of Spotify from the App Store onto the device you will be using for development. Run the Spotify app and login or sign up.
    Note: A Spotify Premium account will be required to play a track on-demand for a uri.
  • Register Your Application. You will need to register your application at My Applications and obtain a client ID. When you register your app you will also need to whitelist a redirect URI that the Spotify Accounts Service will use to callback to your app after authorization.

Add Dependencies

  1. Add the SpotifyiOS.framework to your Xcode project.

Import SpotifyiOS.framework

  1. Add -ObjC to your project’s "Other Linker Flags" (Technical Q&A QA1490)

Other Linker Flags

  1. In your info.plist add your redirect URI you registered at My Applications. You will need to add your redirect URI under "URL types" and "URL Schemes". Be sure to set a unique "URL identifier" as well. More info on URL Schemes


  1. Add #import <SpotifyiOS/SpotifyiOS.h> to your source files to import necessary headers.

Authorize Your Application

To be able to use the playback control part of the SDK the user needs to authorize your application. If they haven’t, the connection will fail with a No token provided error. To allow the user to authorize your app, you can use the SPTSessionManager flow described in the iOS SDK Tutorial and below. This approach can be useful if your application needs a token with multiple scopes. If you’re only interested in using the app-remote-control scope you can use the built-in authorization flow which doesn’t require backend servers for OAuth token swaps.

Using the built-in app-remote-control Authorization flow (Recommended)

  1. Initialize SPTConfiguration with your client ID and redirect URI.
SPTConfiguration *configuration =
    [[SPTConfiguration alloc] initWithClientID:@"your_client_id" redirectURL:[NSURL urlWithString:@"your_redirect_uri"]];
  1. Initialize SPTAppRemote with your SPTConfiguration
self.appRemote = 
    [[SPTAppRemote alloc] initWithConfiguration:configuration logLevel:SPTAppRemoteLogLevelDebug];
  1. Initiate the authentication flow (for other ways to detect if Spotify is installed, as well as attributing installs, please see our Content Linking Guide).

    // Note: A blank string will play the user's last song
    BOOL spotifyInstalled = [self.appRemote authorizeAndPlayURI:@"spotify:track:69bp2EbF7Q2rqc5N3ylezZ"];
    if (!spotifyInstalled) {
    * The Spotify app is not installed.
    * Use SKStoreProductViewController with [SPTAppRemote spotifyItunesItemIdentifier] to present the user
    * with a way to install the Spotify app.
  2. Configure your AppDelegate to parse out the accessToken in application:openURL:options: and set it on the SPTAppRemote connectionParameters.
- (BOOL)application:(UIApplication *)app openURL:(NSURL *)url options:(NSDictionary<UIApplicationOpenURLOptionsKey,id> *)options
    NSDictionary *params = [self.appRemote authorizationParametersFromURL:url];
    NSString *token = params[SPTAppRemoteAccessTokenKey];
    if (token) {
        self.appRemote.connectionParameters.accessToken = token;
    } else if (params[SPTAppRemoteErrorDescriptionKey]) {
        NSLog(@"%@", params[SPTAppRemoteErrorDescriptionKey]);
    return YES;

Using the SPTSessionManager Authorization flow

Note: This is only necessary if you need additional scopes or want to authenticate even if the Spotify app isn’t installed. This approach requires you to have your own server to perform an OAuth token swap

  1. Initialize SPTConfiguration with your client ID and redirect URI.
SPTConfiguration *configuration =
    [[SPTConfiguration alloc] initWithClientID:@"your_client_id" redirectURL:[NSURL urlWithString:@"your_redirect_uri"]];
  1. Set your token swap and refresh URLs . These endpoints will hold your client secret and communicate with Spotify’s servers to get an OAuth token.
// Set these urls to your backend which contains the secret to exchange for an access token
configuration.tokenSwapURL = [NSURL URLWithString: @"http://[your_server]/swap"];
configuration.tokenRefreshURL = [NSURL URLWithString: @"http://[your_server]/refresh"];
  1. Initialize SPTSessionManager with your configuration and delegate.
self.sessionManager = [SPTSessionManager sessionManagerWithConfiguration:configuration delegate:self];
  1. Configure your AppDelegate to parse the returned token from the Spotify app or web view.
(BOOL)application:(UIApplication *)application openURL:(NSURL *)URL options:(NSDictionary<UIApplicationOpenURLOptionsKey, id> *)options
    [self.sessionManager application:application openURL:URL options:options];
  1. If using SPTAppRemote to control playback be sure to set the returned token on its connection parameters in the SPTSessionManager delegate callback.
- (void)sessionManager:(SPTSessionManager *)manager didInitiateSession:(SPTSession *)session
    self.appRemote.connectionParams.accessToken = session.accessToken
  1. Initiate the the authorization process
Scopes let you specify exactly what types of data your application wants to
access, and the set of scopes you pass in your call determines what access
permissions the user is asked to grant.
For more information, see
SPTScope scope = SPTUserFollowReadScope | SPTAppRemoteControlScope;

if (@available(iOS 11, *)) {
    // Use this on iOS 11 and above to take advantage of SFAuthenticationSession
    [self.sessionManager initiateSessionWithScope:scope options:SPTDefaultAuthorizationOption];
} else {
    // Use this on iOS versions < 11 to use SFSafariViewController
    [self.sessionManager initiateSessionWithScope:scope options:SPTDefaultAuthorizationOption presentingViewController:self];

Connect and Subscribe to Player State

  1. Set your connection delegate and attempt to connect.
self.appRemote.delegate = self;
[self.appRemote connect];

- (void)appRemoteDidEstablishConnection:(SPTAppRemote *)appRemote
    // Connection was successful, you can begin issuing commands

- (void)appRemote:(SPTAppRemote *)appRemote didFailConnectionAttemptWithError:(NSError *)error
    // Connection failed

- (void)appRemote:(SPTAppRemote *)appRemote didDisconnectWithError:(nullable NSError *)error
    // Connection disconnected
  1. Set a delegate and subscribe to player state:
    appRemote.playerAPI.delegate = self;

[appRemote.playerAPI subscribeToPlayerState:^(id _Nullable result, NSError * _Nullable error) {
// Handle Errors

- (void)playerStateDidChange:(id<SPTAppRemotePlayerState>)playerState
    NSLog(@"Track name: %@",;

Latest podspec

    "name": "SpotifyRemoteSDK",
    "summary": "Spotify iOS App Remote SDK.",
    "version": "1.0.1",
    "description": "Spotify iOS App Remote SDK for controlling Spotify App remotely.",
    "license": {
        "type": "Proprietary",
        "text": ""
    "authors": {
        "Spotify": ""
    "homepage": "",
    "platforms": {
        "ios": "9.0"
    "source": {
        "http": "",
        "flatten": true
    "source_files": "SpotifyiOS.framework/**/*.h",
    "preserve_paths": "SpotifyiOS.framework",
    "header_dir": "SpotifyiOS.framework/Headers",
    "frameworks": [
    "xcconfig": {
        "FRAMEWORK_SEARCH_PATHS": ""$(PODS_ROOT)/SpotifyRemoteSDK""
    "pod_target_xcconfig": {
        "OTHER_LDFLAGS": "$(inherited) -ObjC"
    "requires_arc": true

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