Spotify is a wonderful app that pretty much changed the way we consume music, popularizing the streaming platform and inspiring countless imitations from other companies like Apple, Tidal, and Amazon.
But it’s not always perfect, and sometimes falls prey to the most annoying of all issues – slow loading, lagging playback, and the dreaded eternal buffering. This can happen on iPhone and Android, and it’s just as irritating on both.
Note: some of these fixes will only work on android devices.
Let’s take a look at why this happens, and what you can do to fix it.
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Why Your Spotify is Lagging
There are several reasons that can affect Spotify’s performance. The main one that will impact the speed at which the app loads and plays songs is a poor internet connection, whether that’s Wi-Fi or mobile data.
Similarly, if your connection dropped out while you were downloading or installing the app, the files can become corrupted, resulting again in lagging issues when trying to use Spotify.
If you’re using the Spotify desktop app, issues that slow down computer usage overall will of course have a detrimental effect on Spotify’s speed. Things like excessive CPU usage and lack of free RAM on your device will cause lagging.
So, if your connection is fine, and the app’s download and installation went smoothly, you might be wondering why Spotify is still running slowly. The answer probably lies in the storage and memory settings on your device. Let’s take a look at some possible fixes.
How to Speed up Spotify
Clear Cache Files
Cache files are a great way for your device to keep hold of regularly used information that should, in theory, make the running of apps and various processes smoother. But that’s not always the case. Cache files can become corrupted; and if there are too many of them for the app to easily access, problems can occur.
Here’s how to clear cache files – don’t worry, you won’t lose any personal data or playlists, but you will lose downloaded files.
Open Spotify and click the Home tab. Go to settings by clicking the gear wheel icon. Scroll down until you reach Storage. Below, there will be a section detailing how Spotify is using your memory. From here, select Delete Cache, and confirm your choice.
You should now see a significant improvement in the speed of the app.
Change Spotify’s Storage Permissions
Further to deleting your cache, you can change where Spotify will store cache files in the future. If you’ve got an SD card with lots of spare memory, or space on your device, you may want to try moving Spotify’s cache location.
Just follow the steps outlined in the previous section, but instead of deleting the cache, tap on Storage, and it will take you to a new screen showing you where data is stored, and how much of it there is.
You can move the cache location by tapping any available option – another SD card, or your device’s internal storage.
Change Spotify’s Install Location
Using an app that is installed and saving directly to your device’s internal storage is a great way to speed up that app and iron out any performance issues.
When an app has to access external storage, such as an SD card, there is an inevitable bottleneck that forms where data cannot transfer fast enough between the app and the storage location.
Switching Spotify’s storage permissions from an SD card to your device’s internal storage can really speed up the app.
To do this, open Settings on your android device. Find Apps, then tap it, and search for Spotify, then tap Storage.
If there is an option to ‘change’ then you are able to move Spotify to the internal memory of your phone. If the option is already grayed out, then Spotify is already installed on the internal memory on your device. If you are able, tap Change then tap Move to change the app’s location.
If none of the above fixes worked, or if you’ve already implemented them in the past, you may want to try some of the old failsafe tricks. As always, these methods aren’t sophisticated or secret, but they often work wonders.
Uninstalling and reinstalling an app can clear out any runtime bugs or performance issues. It’s an old trick that often comes up trumps. It will remove any files associated with Spotify from your device, which may be causing problems in the background.
Some users have noticed a smoother installation with fewer performance issues when downloading Spotify from the official installer on Spotify’s site. Even though it may just redirect you back to the Apple or Play Store, it seems to make a difference.
Restart Your Device
And who could forget, everyone’s favorite… the power cycle! Spotify’s lagging may be a symptom of generic runtime bugs and glitches on your device – not specifically linked to Spotify, so it’s always worth turning your device off and on again to see if that helps.
Change Mobile Network
It may seem a bit extreme, but if your Spotify runs fine when you’re connected to Wi-Fi, but performance issues appear when using mobile data, your cell network could be the issue. Shop around and see who else covers your area – it might make all the difference.
When you’re experiencing app issues, it’s always best to start with the simple stuff. Power cycle your device, close and reopen the app, and uninstall and reinstall the app. These are tried and tested methods that are often effective in clearing out small bugs that make a big dent in performance.
From there, you can try the storage and cache-related fixes if the simple ones don’t work. Lastly, if you’re a paying subscriber, you can try getting in touch with Spotify support to rule out any account or device specific issues, as well as issues on their own end.