Apple to Begin Dismantling iTunes?

If you use an iOS device, you have long had access to the TV app to view movies and TV shows. Yesterday, Apple announced that the TV app would be coming to the Mac later this year, suggesting that videos would be removed from iTunes. While I can hear the joy of the many people who have been hoping that iTunes would be dismantled, it’s not clear exactly what this change would mean.

As long as iTunes has supported video, it has also supported home videos; films you’ve shot yourself, or ripped from DVDs. These videos sync to iOS devices when you select Movies as a content type; there is no specific sync option for home videos.

While Apple certainly wants to have a separate video app for its own iTunes Store content, and its new Apple TV+ content, I can’t imagine that they will remove the ability to store home videos in iTunes, or to sync them to iOS devices. And, while many people stream iTunes Store purchases, I’m sure that there is a substantial number of people who want to have these movies and TV shows locally stored so they can watch them without having to use up bandwidth, and to sync them to iOS devices.

It seems more likely that the TV app will be the catalog, not the library, for video content. While Apple may roll the movies and TV shows sections of the iTunes Store into the TV app on the Mac, it’s also possible that they may not do that . Just as on iOS, where the storefront is in a different app, they may retain all of the iTunes Store in the iTunes app.

As I’ve often written, dismantling iTunes into multiple apps is not a very useful solution. It works on iOS because apps are single windows, and there would be too much navigation and too many tabs required to fit everything into one app. But on the Mac, it still makes more sense to have a single app. I expect the TV app to be similar to the one on iOS and the Apple TV: a way to view content you’ve bought or rented, or to view content from the new channels that Apple will be selling. However, I wouldn’t be surprised if iTunes still retained its movies and TV shows sections to store and manage a library of content you want to keep on a Mac and sync to iOS devices.

2 thoughts on “Apple to Begin Dismantling iTunes?

  1. I think the problem with iTunes is not its UI as much as the underlying architecture for large libraries.

    I subscribe to Apple Music, but I like my carefully curated library of some 90 thousand tracks and movies. I have constant issues with tracks getting lost asking for download, when they are still local. Lots of spinning balls on a high powered system (3.0Ghz 12 core Mac Pro with 48GB of RAM,) and how about keeping track of windows positions?

  2. Your HD or SSD will be Apples storage. Wasn’t it a few years ago they introduced this little option to iTunes so Apple could use your HD to store their apps movies, books, songs, etc, etc that you might use and not have to re-download. We are back to square one.

    It won’t be me. I have stopped buying apps that have In-App Purchases, reduced my storage to 5 GB on their servers, which will have to be increased for all those silly people that subscribe to all that junk Apple offered yesterday. You are going to have to have at least 100 GB or more and that more to pad their bottom line. Time to go back to a flip phone and get away from all this tech crap that is being pushed at us.

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