Sat. Apr 13th, 2024

After a five-year wait, Apple is finally retiring the iTunes app on Windows. It’s being replaced by a trio of apps—Apple Music, Apple TV, and Apple Devices. These apps are now available on the Microsoft Store and will restrict iTunes’ capabilities upon installation.

The Mac version of iTunes bit the dust in 2019. A suite of new apps, specifically Apple Music, Apple TV, Apple Books, and Apple Podcasts, were introduced to fill the gap left by iTunes. While some people still prefer the kitchen-sink nature of iTunes, these discreet apps are far less intimidating to beginners and mirror Apple’s approach on the iPhone and iPad.

In any case, most Windows users can finally transition away from iTunes. Today’s release doesn’t include Apple Books or Apple Podcasts for Windows—if you previously used iTunes for audiobooks or podcasts on a Windows PC, you must continue doing so. The Apple Devices app, which does not exist on macOS, will allow you to sync files with your iPhone, iPad, or aging iPod (Finder handles those tasks on Mac).

For any of these apps to work, you must install all three of them. You’ll also need to authorize your Windows 10 or Windows 11 PC with your Apple ID—install and open Apple Music or Apple TV on your Windows PC, click the “Accounts” tab at the top of the app window, and enter the “Authorized Devices” menu. Detailed instructions are listed on Apple’s website.

Note that the Apple Music and Apple TV apps still rely on the legacy iTunes folder. If you have a large media collection in your iTunes folder, it will automatically appear in the Apple Music or Apple TV apps. Deleting your iTunes folder will leave you without any local media. And, in case you’re wondering, Apple Music can play local media files. A subscription to the Apple Music service isn’t required for local media playback.

You can download the Windows versions of Apple Music, Apple TV, and Apple Devices from the Microsoft Store. If you still want to use iTunes for music or device management, don’t install these apps, as they restrict iTunes functionality to podcasts and audiobooks. The new apps are still not available on older versions of Windows, but that’s not much of a surprise: most apps are leaving Windows 7 and 8.1 behind.

Source: Apple via MacRumors

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By John P.

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