How to Make Genius Playlists on Your iPhone

make genius playlist on iphone
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The iPhone's Genius feature creates playlists of songs that sound great together. Just give Genius a song to start and you'll get a collection of 25 songs that iTunes thinks to compliment each other. It makes this choice based on star ratings of songs, purchase history, and other information from the hundreds of millions of iTunes and Apple Music users.

It's a great way to get a quick mix of music without doing it yourself.

But your ability to enjoy Genius Playlists depends on what version of the iOS you're running on your iPhone. Read on for instructions on how to create Genius Playlists on the iPhone on recent and older versions of the iOS.

Making Genius Playlists on iOS 10? You Can't

Bad news iOS 10 users: Genius Playlists are no longer an option for you. Apple removed the feature from that version of the OS. There's been no explanation for why the company did that, though a lot of fans are upset about it. No word on whether it will come back in a later version, either. For now, if you use iOS 10, your iPhone is a little less of a genius. Sorry.

Making Genius Playlists in iOS 8.4 through iOS 9 

Since the release of Apple Music with iOS 8.4, the Genius Playlist feature on iPhone has been a little hard to find. It's still there, though, if you know where to look. To create a Genius Playlist if you're running iOS 8.4 through iOS 9 and have the Music app:

  1. Tap Music app to launch it
  2. Browse your music library to find the song you want to use as the basis of the Genius Playlist and tap it
  3. On the player screen, tap the ... icon in the bottom right corner
  4. Tap Create Genius Playlist
  5. Tap the down arrow in the top left corner or swipe down to close the playback screen
  1. Tap Playlists at the top center of the screen
  2. The first item in the list of playlists is the Genius Playlist you just created. It has the name of the song you selected in Step 2
  3. Tap the playlist to view its contents
  4. On the playlist screen, you have a number of options:
    1. To listen to the playlist, tap any song or tap the album art at the top
    2. To add or remove songs, rename the playlist, or add a description, tap EDIT
    3. To get new songs and to shuffle the order of songs in the playlist, tap the curved arrow icon next to EDIT
    4. To delete the playlist, tap the ... icon and then tap Delete from My Music. In the menu that pops up from the bottom of the screen tap Delete from My Music.

Making Genius Playlists in Earlier Versions of the iOS

Earlier versions of the iOS had different ways to create Genius Playlists—so many that I can't list them all here. If you're running iOS 8, and thus don't have Apple Music, your steps are reasonably similar to the instructions in the last section.

If you're running iOS 7 and some earlier versions (and if so, it's time to upgrade!), try these steps:

  1. Begin by tapping on the Music app to launch it. (Alternatively, you can build a Genius playlist around the song you're currently playing by tapping the Create button in the bottom middle of the screen.)
  1. Tap the Playlists icon at bottom left
  2. Tap Genius Playlist
  3. Browse the music on your device and select a song by tapping the + icon next to it
  4. This creates a 25-song Genius playlist (unlike on the desktop, there's no way to make a Genius playlist more than 25 songs long on the iPhone)
  5. The new playlist appears in the Playlists tab of the Music app. Tap it to view all songs in the playlist
  6. Once you're in the playlist, you can tap Refresh to get a new set of songs based on the first one
  7. If you love the playlist, tap Save in the top right. The Genius playlist will be saved in your playlists screen with the name of the song you built the playlist around and the Genius icon next to it
  1. Once the playlist is saved, you can tap the Edit button in the top right to refresh the playlist or tap Delete to delete it.
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