Apple made an astonishing announcement that would leave millennials having to say farewell to one of the most influential media apps of their time. On Monday June 3,Apple announced that they would be putting an end to iTunes after 18 years of service at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference. In September, the software for the app will be broken up into three separate apps on the Catalina Mac Operating System; music, podcasts, and television.
It is important to note that iTunes will continue to function as a music store, but it will be closely aligned with Apple’s music streaming service, Apple Music. There are many reasons that prompted this change for the company. One of the biggest reasons being that music sales have plummeted at the hands of streaming. Last year, streaming made up 75% of revenue for the music industry.
Another reason for this change is the ongoing complaint that the iTunes desktop app was trying to be too many things at once. Before, the iTunes app was the home for syncing media to iPhones and iPads, an mp3 file manager, a music store, a video store, and more. With all of these functions that the app held, users would find themselves staring at the “rainbow pinwheel of death” meaning that their device was stuck or simply just lagging. By giving each function it’s own separate app, it will make it a more pleasant experience that is easier and faster for users. Syncing will now happen through Finder for Mac users so customers will still be able to download music and access their libraries as they please. The future of syncing for Windows users is still unknown as Apple has not commented on what will happen for them.
So what does this change mean for users overall? MP3’s will still be able to be played on computers because people’s iTunes collections aren’t being killed. It is still unsure if personal playlists and play counts will stay intact at this time. As mentioned before, the iTunes store will remain open for users to purchase music as they please with a click of a button. Once the update happens, it is likely that the older versions of iTunes will not be accessible. Another mystery that still lies is determining the oldest iOS software that this update will be available. More information on the update should be released as the time comes closer.
So bid your farewell to iTunes as you know it, and say hello to the new model of the app.