If you are an iOS user, then you will be pleased (or not) with what Apple (News - Alert) has done to your iTunes. Apple has finally released the long awaited and postponed iTunes 11, which comes with a redesigned interface. The streamlined iTunes 11 also comes with new and enhanced features and of course, additional capabilities to iCloud.
Getting down to the new iTunes 11 interface, users are now greeted with a display of album covers from the music library and familiar playback controls in the top left corner and a middle “now playing” display area. Switching between different media types as well as shared iTunes libraries will now be done using a pop-up menu right below the playback controls. Further right, you can access connected iOS devices and the iTunes Store. For music lovers, no CoverFlow; seems like Apple did not think anyone was interested in looking at album art while listening to music.
A tasteful rendering of an album’s cover color now fills the background when you single click an album. Double clicking plays the first song or movie in your album or TV show list. If you feel that you are not ready to part with the old interface, you can always revert back to using the old iTunes 10 interface elements from the View menu after selecting Show Sidebar.
Apple has also changed search capabilities by adding unified search across all your media types, whether music, TV shows, movies, podcasts, apps or books. Previous searches could only be done within the selected content types. Another hyped addition is the Up Next feature that allows you to view upcoming tracks slated to be played next. The new feature allows you to add songs on the fly, in addition to other playing options that now make it much more fun.
One of my favorite additions to the iTunes 11 is the iCloud streaming feature. As you explore your media library, you will notice media that you don’t have stored locally on your hard drive when you are signed in to iCloud. This is because iTunes now fetches all your purchased content and enables you to stream it directly from the cloud. A cloud icon appears in the top right corner of the thumbnail to show you music, movies or TV shows that reside in the cloud. iCloud even remembers where you left off playing your movie or TV show and will continue right where you left off either on your iPhone (News - Alert), iPod Touch, iPad or Apple TV. And of course, if you don’t want to see your iCloud content, you can turn it off by selecting the Hide Music in the Cloud from the View menu. I doubt you will want to do this though. All these new cool features are worth a try in the iTunes.
The new iTunes 11 is available for download from this link.
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Edited by Brooke Neuman