As reported yesterday, Apple have finally lifted the covers off iTunes 11, the latest version of their Mac and PC media storefront and management app.
It’s a significant refresh for the service, which has been accused of failing to move with the times in the past, suffering from excessively resource hogging machines and slowing them down.
iTunes 11 benefits from a cleaner, simpler interface, making it far easier to navigate, and looking a bit jazzier than previous incarnations, with artist and movie pages each now having bespoke imagery.Altogether its much more visual; albums and playlists are given an expanded view, meaning you no longer have to click through to another page in order check tracks and metadata. It’s a far more efficient use of screen real estate. The ability to buy tracks from an artist you like directly from the iTunes library is a great time saver too, and likely to boost Apple’s revenues further through quick impulse purchases.
The update also introduces a mini player for iTunes, letting you check what’s currently playing without having to jump back to the full-fat version of iTunes. The small player lets you check what’s currently playing and what’s coming next, with album art, track titles and artist information all displayed.
Adding media to an iPod, iPhone or iPad is simpler than before too. Hook an iDevice up and it now appears in the top tool bar. Adding media is then as simple as clicking the button then dragging your desired file onto the sidebar.On the 2012 Retina MacBook Pro we tried iTunes with, things indeed felt smoother and quicker to load than on previous iterations, though our powerful test machine makes it slightly difficult to gauge if all users will have a similar experience. The real test will come when trying iTunes 11 on a PC, with the Windows platform traditionally struggling with the resource-hungry app. We’ll update this post once we’ve had a chance to try iTunes 11 on a PC. So far so good though, showing that Eddy Cue, tasked with fixing many of Apple’s current software woes, seems to be on the right track.
iTunes 11 is available to download from Apple.com now. If you’ve already got an older version of iTunes, you’ll be prompted to update to the latest version the next time you fire it up.
By Gerald Lynch | November 30th, 2012