iTunes is OS X’s built-in application for managing and playing music and video files, as well as for transferring digital media from a computer to an iPod or iPhone.


Music is one of the most popular forms of entertainment. Musicians from around the world can command high salaries for this reason. Of course, not all musicians rise to fame, many remain playing solely in their garages or parents’ basements. However, musicians who make it, become rich and famous. Music entertains, enlivens, soothes, calms and brings joy to the hearts of many. One of the most sung about subjects is, of course, love.

But, closer to the point of our short article, there has been tremendous changes in the music industry within the last decade. Many remember the famous rock band, Metallica, filing a lawsuit against the illegal download of their music. Indeed, the Internet has made it possible for millions of songs worldwide to be downloaded illegally, without any proceeds going to the artist.

Therefore, Apple developed the app iTunes, which acts as a media player, a library as well as an online radio broadcaster. On iTunes, you can legally buy and download songs from artists all over the world. One advantage of iTunes, is that you do not need to buy the full album (which you can do, of course), but you are able to purchase only the songs you like. Remember the old times when you had to buy the full album just to listen to a single that you really liked, without enjoying the twenty or so songs left on the CD? The problem is solved with iTunes, where you choose which songs you like, pay only for them and download them to your iPhone, other Apple mobile device or Mac computer. You can also sync to your music libraries in order to access them on all your devices.

Today, iTunes is also available on Microsoft Windows operated computers. Similarly, iTunes is also used to download and store videos. As mentioned above, iTunes is available on mobile devices such as the iPhone, iPad, as well as the iPod Touch. Aside from music, users can also download television shows, podcasts, ringtones and many other media, (although some restrictions apply depending on the country).

iTunes: Radio and Podcasts

You are also able to access radio streams if you would like. In order to access radio streams, just click the Radon icon in the Source sidebar, but you can also use the podcast option. Unlike most online radios which are streamed in real time, podcasts are downloadable files which are loaded and ready to listen to. There are also many musical podcasts, as well as podcasts of lectures.

It’s possible to download an individual podcast directly from the website of whoever produced it, but you can use iTunes to subscribe to podcasts that you are interested in. iTunes will then automatically download any new episodes of the selected podcast at regular intervals, so you’ll have fresh news, poems, debates, music and much more.

To subscribe, click Podcasts in the Sources sidebar. Then click the Podcast Directory link at the bottom. When you find the podcast you’d like to have, click Subscribe. After that, return to the podcasts icon in the Sources sidebar to find your downloaded shows. Click Settings to choose how you’d like iTunes to deal with old episodes, as well as how often iTunes should check for new ones. Unplayed podcast episodes appear in iTunes with a blue dot next to them. The total number of unplayed episodes in your library is displayed in the Sources sidebar.

iTunes and Apple TV

Apple TV makes it easy to catch all the latest entertainment on iTunes. You can rent or purchase recent box office hits and cinema classics — even enjoy bonus content with iTunes Extras. You also have access to single episodes and full seasons of current and vintage TV shows. Movies are often available the same day they come out to DVD, and many TV shows are available the day after they air.

How to Use an iPod

By default, any iPod will automatically synchronize itself with your iTunes Library, making an exact match of all your songs and playlists whenever you connect.

Automatically update selected: If you connect the iPod and look under the various tabs on the Options panel, you can customize exactly which portions of your iTunes Library you want to be available on your iPod. This is very useful if your iPod has no capacity to hold your entire collection or if you’re using multiple iPods with a single copy of iTunes, etc.

Manually manage music and videos: This option is found within the Summary tab of the iPod Options panel. It allows you to control the contents of your iPod, and you can update the gadget by dragging tracks, playlists, videos, TV shows, genres, albums, etc. from the iTunes Library onto your iPod icon. Note that when you manually manage your iPod, you have to eject it on the screen each time you want to physically disconnect it.

Regardless of which syncing option you use, you can copy from iTunes to iPod rather than the other way around. You can also import media from your iPod to a Mac, with the help of some special software.

Keep in mind, that there can be issues related to the distribution of copyrighted materials when using podcasts.

On the historical side of the story, Apple purchased iTunes in 2000. Further, iTunes 1.0 was released at Macworld San Francisco on January 9, 2001. The iTunes Store appeared in April 2003..


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