Tidal has taken a leaf out of Spotify's book and launched a 'casting' feature that allows subscribers to control music streaming on compatible products directly within the Tidal mobile apps.
Tidal Connect – essentially Spotify Connect for Tidal – allows the native Tidal app to be a controller for connected devices. The new feature is available to Premium as well as HiFi subscribers.
Tidal already supports Chromecast to allow users to easily stream and control music to Chromecast-enabled devices within the app, but Tidal Connect is a more versatile, all-encompassing alternative. Not only does it too support the service's CD-quality playback, it can also uniquely cast the hi-res Masters (MQA) tracks and Dolby Atmos Music catalogue available to Tidal HiFi subscribers.
Presumably tracks in Tidal's 60-million-strong library can be cast via Tidal Connect at their maximum quality, and that allowed by the user's subscription – 320kbps for Premium subscribers and 24-bit/96kHz for HiFi subscribers (some Masters tracks actually go up to 192kHz but a compatible, MQA-enabled DAC is necessary to get that output).
As with Chromecast, users can simply select their Tidal Connect-enabled product in the device selector at the bottom of the 'Now Playing' screen.
So what Tidal Connect-enabled products are there? Tidal hasn't detailed specific device compatibility, but the launch partners for Tidal Connect include Bluesound, Cambridge Audio, DALI, KEF*, iFi audio, Lyngdorf, Monitor, NAD, Naim Audio and StreamUnlimited – so we can imagine the lion's share, if not all, of Tidal-supporting products from those brands will support the feature.
“TIDAL consistently looks for opportunities to normalize and elevate the HiFi listening experience, with its chief aims being uncompromised high-fidelity sound and seamless access to entertainment. TIDAL Connect offers HiFi members another route to discovery, making it easier to control music on a preferred device and motivating users to use TIDAL as intended, wherever and whenever,” said Tidal COO Lior Tibon.
*KEF has just announced its LS50 Wireless II speaker system now supports Tidal Connect.