How to Add Local Files to Spotify

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Matthew M. White
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Not only can you stream music to Spotify anytime and anywhere, but you also have the ability to add local files to your Spotify playlists. This unique feature makes Spotify a music app with which you can stream countless new songs and add your own favorites from your computer to create the perfect personalized playlist.

In this article, you will learn how to add local songs to your Spotify library. It will also answer frequently asked questions about things you can and cannot do with local files on your Spotify account.

How to Add Local Files to Spotify

Spotify has 70 million tracks, with new songs uploaded every day. But sometimes the song you are looking for is not available in the database. This is usually the case for songs that are not very popular, recorded in other languages, very old or unavailable for legal reasons.

Few users know this, but you can actually import your own music to your Spotify library. It's a great way to store all your tracks in one place, taking into account that your storage isn't limited to a certain number of songs. If the local files are all stored on your computer and you want to listen to them on the mobile app, you should definitely consider this option.

What's great about this feature is that it's not only available to Premium subscribers – users with free accounts also have this option. However, it is important to note that only users with a Premium account can listen to local files on the mobile app.

How to Add Local Files to Spotify on PC and Mac

Before going into details, note that you can only do this on the desktop app. Spotify does not allow you to upload local songs to the web player. On Windows, Spotify runs a scan of all your music folders as soon as you install the app. However, if your music files are scattered in different folders, Spotify is unlikely to locate them all.

On the other hand, Mac users still have a few steps to follow. In order to add local files to your Spotify library on your Mac, you need to enable them first. This is how it's done:

  1. Open your Spotify desktop app.

  2. Go to Settings in the left sidebar. Go to Edit, then to Preferences.
    (On Windows, the settings are in the drop-down menu in the upper-right corner of your screen.)

  3. Look for local files in the list of sections.

  4. Toggle the Show local files switch. It will turn green.

Now is the time to insert the files from your computer. This is done the same way for Windows and Mac.

  1. In the same section, Spotify will offer folders from which you can add the files (usually downloads and a music library).

  2. Click the Add Source button.

  3. You can add separate songs or an entire album.

  4. All added songs will be stored in the Local Songs folder of the Spotify Library.

  5. If you want to move the local songs, you can add them to separate playlists or you can create a whole new playlist for them. If you want to stream the local files to your phone, we suggest you do so.

Keep in mind that the local files you want to add to your Spotify library must be on the computer's hard drive. To make the process easier, be sure to download everything first and store all the tracks in one folder. Once local files are added to your Spotify playlists, you can listen to them like any other song.

Notes: You can only insert mp3, mp4 and m4p files.

How to Access Spotify Local Files on Android

Unfortunately, adding local files from a mobile device is not possible. You can only listen to local songs on your phone if you have a Premium account. If you have a free account, you can only add local files and listen to them on your computer. However, if you were to open your mobile app after adding the local songs to your desktop app, you would still be able to see them, but not play them.

If you want to listen to local files on your mobile app, you still need to insert them through your computer by following the steps in the previous section. Once you've moved local music files to a new playlist, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Spotify app.

  2. Locate the new album with local files.
  3. Download the entire album by tapping the arrow icon.

You will now be able to listen to local files freely.

Notes: To make sure this works, your phone and computer must be connected to the same Wi-Fi network.

How to Access Spotify Local Files on iPhone

Again, you cannot add local files directly from your phone, as you can only listen to them as a Premium user. The process of accessing local songs on an iPhone has a few additional steps:

  1. Open the Spotify app.

  2. Go to Settings in the upper right corner of your screen.

  3. Scroll down to Local Files.

  4. Toggle the Local Audio Files switch.

  5. Find local songs whether they are all stored in one playlist or in different ones.
  6. Download playlists. (You need to download the whole playlist because Spotify doesn't allow you to download separate songs.)

How to fix local files not showing on phone on Spotify?

Even if you had followed all the steps correctly, you might still encounter problems. If the added local files do not appear in your Spotify library on your phone, make sure that:

  • Your mobile device and computer are connected to the same Wi-Fi network.
  • Your Spotify app is updated on all your devices.
  • You are using the same Spotify account.
  • All your devices are up to date.
  • You have enabled your local files on your desktop app.

Additional FAQs

What is a local file on Spotify?

Local files are files that are stored on your computer's hard drive. It's important to note that the only local files you can add to your Spotify library are songs. However, not all file types are supported on Spotify. Here are the ones Spotify lets you download:

.mp3 files

.m4p files

Notes: M4p files that include video will not be allowed.

.mp4 files

File formats that are not supported are FLAC (m4A) files and other lossless formats.

Notes: If Spotify won't allow you to add your music files, try installing QuickTime on your computer. The program is designed to format your music file in a supported format (mp3, m4p and mp4).

If you still can't find your local files, make sure you haven't enabled any filters in your playlists. Also, make sure you're using the correct account. To find a song in your Spotify library, go to the search bar and just type it.

Notes: Spotify does not allow you to download local songs or those obtained from illegal sources.

How to transfer songs from iTunes to Spotify?

If you want to upload your music to Spotify from iTunes and not from a specific folder on your computer, here's how:

First, you need to make sure you can share files from iTunes:

1. Open iTunes.

2. Then go to Preferences.

3. Choose the Advanced option.

4. Check the “Share iTunes XML library with other applications” option.

Now that you have enabled the music sharing option from iTunes, you can download the songs. This is how it's done:

1. Open the Spotify desktop app.

2. Click on the Files option from the menu.

3. From the drop-down menu, choose Import Playlists.

4. Click iTunes.

5. Choose the specific folder you want to upload to Spotify.

Listen to all your music on Spotify

Now you have learned how to add local files to your Spotify library, how to play local files on your mobile app, and many more tips. There are a ton of options Spotify has to offer, and once you get it all figured out, listening to music will be an even better experience. By combining new tracks uploaded to Spotify every day and your own local songs, you can create the most personalized playlists ever.

Have you ever added local songs to Spotify? Did you follow the instructions described in this article? Let us know in the comments section below.

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