Buying music has always involved tough decisions. Rolling Stones or
Beatles? CD or LP? The mall or the indie record store with the cute
cashier? These questions have plagued music fans for decades, but the
iTunes Store changed everything. Thanks to its convenience, huge
catalog, and iPod-friendliness, iTunes now sells more music in the
United States than any other retailer, either online or
brick-and-mortar. But choices remain. iTunes competitors have sprung up
all over the Internet, clamoring for your dollars.
It’s no secret that Apple’s iTunes software is widely considered to be a bloated beast written on top of ancient code. For all of its great features and continual update, the Mac version of iTunes is often more sluggish and slow than its Windows counterpart. But that may soon be changing, according to a new report from The Wall Street Journal.
The Home Sharing feature in iTunes 9 lets you share music between
computers right within iTunes, but it has a bunch of limitations. Both
machines need to be on one network, and the only automatic transfers
are new iTunes Store purchases--regular old CD rips and non-iTunes
downloads can be dragged manually from one computer to another.
iTunes 9 also added the Automatically Add To iTunes folder to your
iTunes Media folder. Any iTunes-compatible file dropped in here is,
like the sign says, automatically added to your iTunes library. Just
drop it in there and poof, it’s gone. But check in iTunes. It’s there.
Proving that iPhone users haven’t run out of original things to do with their devices, a group of students at the University of Michigan will be performing live on December 9 with an orchestra made up entirely of iPhones.