Apple discontinues iTunes


The future of iTunes, Apple’s long-standing media player and mobile management app, has long since been debated, especially since the release of Apple Music in 2015, which seemed to overlap significantly in functionality with its much older predecessor. Now, the need for debate is over. After 18 years, Apple is discontinuing iTunes.


iTunes is being phased out as part of the launch of Apple’s latest software release, MacOS Catalina, and replaced with three separate apps – Apple Music, Apple Podcasts and Apple TV – which will aim to plug the gap and, hopefully, leave user experience unaffected. In order to detail just how the discontinuation of iTunes will affect users, Apple has released an official document detailing the changes.


What do iTunes users need to know?


If you’re an iTunes user and are worried about how the app’s discontinuation will affect your music, backups, applications and other content, here’s everything you need to know.


  • Any music that you’ve imported to or purchased in iTunes will be migrated into the new Apple Music app.
  • Any playlists that you’ve created in iTunes will also be migrated into Apple Music.
  • The iTunes store will still be available in order to buy music on Mac, iOS, PC and Apple TV.
  • iTunes gift cards and iTunes Store credits will remain valid and can be redeemed within the new standalone apps, or in the App Store.
  • Backing up your Apple devices, such as iPhones, iPads and iPods, will now take place in Finder.
  • Movies and TV shows purchased, rented or stored within iTunes will be migrated into the new Apple TV app. Apple TV will be used for future movie and TV purchases/rentals.
  • Any podcasts subscribed to or imported to iTunes will be migrated into the new Apple Podcasts app.
  • Any audiobooks purchased within iTunes will be migrated into the new Apple Books app. Apple Books will be used for all future audiobook purchases.


Put simply, your content library will, essentially, be unaffected. It is just your means to accessing it that will be changing. Music, podcasts, TV, applications and so on will be accessible via dedicated standalone apps, just like they are on the iPhone.


How will I sync my devices?


In MacOS Catalina, rather than using iTunes to manage your Apple devices, you will manage and sync your devices in Finder, Apple’s default file manager and graphical user interface shell.


What will happen to my apps?


In terms of your applications, nothing is changing. Following the launch of MacOS Catalina, your apps will be purchased and updated in the App Store, as they have been for some time, and managed in Finder.


4C Strategies – Mobile Technology Consultants


4C Strategies is a team of professional, independent mobile technology consultants. If your organisation deploys Apple devices, such as iPhones or iPads, and is at all worried about how the discontinuation of iTunes will affect how your users are able to interact with these devices, contact 4C Strategies on 01858 438938, or email