It Appears Apple Is Really Killing iTunes, Marking The End Of An Era

All signs point to Apple finally pulling the plug on iTunes at WWDC 2019. In place of it will be a standalone Music app, which is said to retain many features iTunes currently offers.  ( Attapon Thaphaengphan | Pixabay )

Apple is preparing to phase out iTunes, according to a new report from Bloomberg. At its Worldwide Developers Conference on June 3, the Cupertino brand is expected to retired the iconic, often hated — even among loyal Apple fans — music library management software.

Standalone Music App

To replace iTunes, Apple is said to roll out a new standalone music app, alongside ones for television and podcast.

The move should perhaps come as no surprise, as it's been rumored for years now. Plus, on iPhones and iPads, Music, TV, and Podcasts apps have already remained standalone offerings for years, unlike iTunes on macOS, which bundles all these services in one package.

Bloomberg says users can expect the standalone Music app to offer the same set of services that iTunes currently offers, including being able to purchase songs, sync iPhones and iPads, and others, only with a sleeker interface that absent unnecessary elements of the original software. In short, Music will hew closer to the Apple Music streaming service in terms of design and functionalities, with less bloat cluttering the whole experience.

The End Of An Era

But it should be said that the death of iTunes, if true, will surely mark the end of an era. Though there have been countless complaints regarding iTunes, be it being too bloated, clunky, and at times deliberately cumbersome, it did, without a doubt, changed the way music is listened to and bought. Before iTunes launched, the music industry was trying and failing to come up with ways to combat the plight of piracy. iTunes, upon launched, heralded a user-friendly way to buy, collect, and manage one's music.

Big music companies at the time, including Sony and Microsoft, had been experimenting with the idea of digital record stores. However, they lacked a crucial thing Apple at the time excelled at — making attractive, simple software that works. In an interview with Rolling Stone in 2013 about iTunes 10th anniversary, Warner Music VP said:

"It really took a company that was able to bridge those two things and come up with an attractive consumer product," in reference to Apple.

It makes sense for iTunes to go away. There's not much use for a dedicated music library in this day and age for most people, especially now that's streaming has become commonplace. Apps such as Spotify and Apple Music greatly streamlined the listening experience on mobile, and it'll likely stay the default way to access music for a long time.

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