In very welcome news for running enthusiasts around the world, Apple Watch users are now able to stream their favourite songs or podcasts directly on the device without needing to be paired with an iPhone.

Previously the Apple Watch has served as a glorified remote control for Spotify users, merely allowing them to select what to listen to while being paired to an iPhone they are carrying with them.

While its rival Pandora, along with Apple Music, have launched standalone apps on the Apple Watch, Spotify has been behind the pace.

But the streaming giant has now begun rolling out the ability for users to play audio through the Spotify app on an Apple Watch without the need to be paired with an iPhone.

As 9to5Mac reported, Apple Watch users have begun noticing a message pop up after updating the watchOS: “Would you like to stream Spotify on your Apple Watch? Choose it here.”

This allows users to access their recently played items and library of artists, albums and artists through the watch. While the standalone app does not allow for text searches, users can make the most of Siri to find what they’re looking for.

To do this, Apple Watch users will be able to tap the devices menu on the bottom right hand corner of the Spotify app.

Apple Watch will appear at the top of the list.

If this is selected, the user will be asked to pick which Bluetooth device they want to connect to the watch.

Once this is selected, the music or podcast will start to be streamed.

Winner, winner

The lack of this functionality previously has been greatly annoying for Apple Watch users, especially those looking to go for a run or another form of exercise and listen to music without lugging along their phone.

Apple Watch owners will still need to have access to mobile data or Wi-Fi in order to use the Spotify app.

In a statement to TechCrunch, Spotify confirmed the launch of the feature and that it will be available around the world.

“We’re focused on developing experiences that enable users to listen to Spotify whenever and wherever they want – regardless of the device or platform,” a Spotify spokesperson said.

“After an initial testing period, we are now rolling out streaming capabilities for Spotify on the Apple Watch.”

To make the most of this new feature, you’ll need an Apple Watch Series 3 or later, running watchOS 6.0.

The option for companies to do this has been available since Apple launched new streaming APIs last year at its annual developer conference.

Using these, app developers can now create independent audio listening experiences without needing to rely on the iPhone.

Audio streaming service Pandora was the first major third-party to utilise this feature, launching its own standalone watch app in February this year.

The same feature is also available for users of Apple Music listening on an Apple Watch.

Spotify began testing this feature in September this year, nearly two years after it first launched its app on the Apple Watch.