How to Make Genius Playlists on Your iPhone

iOS versions 10 or later no longer offer the Genius Playlist feature

What to Know

  • Open the Music app and choose a song you want to base the playlist around. Tap the More icon and choose Create Genius Playlist.
  • Close the playback screen and go to Playlists, choose your new Genius playlist, and choose Edit to add more songs.
  • You can also use Edit to remove songs, rename the playlist, or add a description.

The iTunes Genius feature creates playlists of songs that sound great together. Give Genius a song and you get a collection of 25 songs that iTunes thinks compliment each other. It chooses songs based on star ratings, purchase history, and other information from the millions of iTunes and Apple Music users. Instructions in this article apply to iOS 9, iOS 8.4, iOS 8, and iOS 7.

How to Make Genius Playlists in iOS 8.4 through iOS 9 

To create a Genius Playlist on an iPhone with iOS 8.4 through iOS 9 installed:

  1. Tap the Music app.

  2. Browse your music library and tap the song you want to use as the basis of the Genius Playlist.

  3. On the playback screen, tap the More icon (represented by three dots).

  4. Tap Create Genius Playlist.

  5. Tap the down arrow or swipe down to close the playback screen.

  6. Tap Playlists.

  7. The first item in the list of playlists is the Genius Playlist you created. It has the name of the song you selected in Step 2.

  8. Tap the playlist to view the contents.

  9. On the playlist screen, choose an option:

    • To listen to the playlist, tap any song or tap the album art.
    • To add or remove songs, rename the playlist, or add a description, tap Edit.
    • To get new songs and to shuffle the order of songs in the playlist, tap the curved arrow icon next to Edit.
  10. To delete the playlist, tap the More icon, tap Delete from My Music, then tap Delete from My Music.

Create Genius Playlists in iOS 8 and Earlier

Earlier versions of the iOS offered different ways to create Genius Playlists. If your iPhone has iOS 8 and doesn't have Apple Music, the steps are similar to the instructions in the previous section.

If your iPhone has iOS 7 or some earlier version follow these steps (and consider an upgrade):

  1. Tap the Music app to launch it. Alternatively, to build a Genius playlist around the song that's currently playing, tap Create.

  2. Tap the Playlists icon.

  3. Tap Genius Playlist.

  4. Browse the music on your device and tap the Add icon (the plus sign) next to a song to create a 25-song Genius playlist.

    Unlike on the desktop iTunes, there's no way to make a Genius playlist with more than 25 songs on the iPhone.

  5. The new playlist appears in the Playlists tab of the Music app. Tap the playlist to view all songs in the playlist.

  6. In the playlist, tap Refresh to get a new set of songs based on the first one.

  7. If you like the playlist, tap Save to save the Genius playlist in your playlists screen with the name of the song you built the playlist around and the Genius icon next to it.

  8. After the playlist is saved, tap the Edit button in the top right to refresh the playlist or tap Delete to delete it.

Genius Playlists No Longer Available on iOS 10 and Later

Genius Playlists are no longer an option on iOS 10 and up. Apple removed the feature from iOS 10 and hasn't restored it in subsequent versions. The company hasn't explained why it made this choice, though many fans are upset about it. There's been no word on whether it will come back in a later version. 

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