iTunes to shut down, replaced by three new media apps

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Tech giant Apple has announced the end of popular music library iTunes, with the service expected to shut down in the next year.

The sudden demise of the musical mainstay is expected to be confirmed at the Worldwide Developers Conference, with Apple looking to stay competitive within the music streaming market, as well as align its music arm with the rest of its entertainment media strategies.

Launched in 2001, iTunes was considered a revolutionary step-forward in music storage and downloads, with users able to purchase individual songs, or whole albums, before the service expanded to include movies, tv shows, audiobooks and more recently, podcasts.

Apple reports that iTunes will be superseded by three separate apps – Music, TV and Podcasts – allowing users to manage each medium individually, with the change coming with the latest version of macOS, 10.15 Catalina, slated for release later this year.

“With macOS Catalina, we’re bringing fresh new apps to the Mac, starting with new standalone version of Apple Music, Apple Podcasts and the Apple TV app,” said Craig Federighi, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Software Engineering, in an Apple press release.

In the same press release, Apple states that “the new Music app for Mac is lightning fast, fun and easy to use. Apple Music will help users discover great new music with over 50 million songs, playlists and music videos. And users will have access to their entire music library, whether they downloaded the songs, purchased them or ripped them from a CD”.

What will happen to my iTunes Music Library?

Users who currently use iTunes for music and entertainment will still have access to their libraries, with the library simply transferred to the newer apps. Mac users will see a change in usability and structure through the new inclusions, with Windows users expected to find no change in their iTunes experience.

Despite the phasing out of iTunes, the iTunes Music Store will still be operational, enabling users to still purchase songs and entertainment.

More news is expected to be released as the Conference continues, with Apple expected to also release more statements closer to the iOS and macOS updates.

Picture credit: charnsitr/shutterstock.com

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