Apple’s long awaited iTunes 11 update is finally live for both PC and Mac platforms. Mac users can update it via the App Store app on their Mac, while Windows users will have to kick off the update from within their existing iTunes software. Updating to iTunes 11 is well worth it, so you should get to downloading it ASAP!
I’ve been dicking (professional term for testing) around with it for the past couple of hours, and I have to say that it’s a much needed update that really speeds things up in iTunes. The app just seemed to fire up a little snappier, and it didn’t take forever for my iDevices to sync to it. Sometimes syncing and connecting to your devices was a slow and arduous process in the pre-iTunes 11 environment, so I’m impressed with the new found efficiency when it comes to the overall speed boosts in 11.
Edge to Edge View
The biggest difference in iTunes 11 is the look and feel of the application. Gone is the ugly sidebar, which has been replaced by a drop down menu on the top ribbon, which allows for more screen real estate for all of your music, movies, TV shows, Apps, and more. Don’t fret though, because you can add back all of the views that have gone missing if you don’t like the cleaner look of iTunes 11. Just hit the View menu and toggle the screens you want to see. Although, I think you’ll appreciate the new sterile look and quicker navigation in iTunes 11.
Introducing the new iTunes 11 edge to edge look
New Album/Movie Views
My favorite new feature, especially for listening to music, is the new instant preview for every album in your library. While on the Album tab you can click on the cover art for any album in your library, and it will provide a drop down menu where you can see information about the album, as well as browse its song list. No longer do you have to flip screens back and forth to play a different track. This same feature is available for your movie library as well. This new look coincides with the overhaul to iTunes 11’s visuals, and it is definitely sexier looking. Well, that’s if you consider software to be lust worthy.
Notice the new album view when they’re clicked on (same for movies)
On top of the visual overhaul, iTunes 11 also offers much better iCloud integration. You can now easily see any music, movies, or TV shows that you’ve bought in iCloud, which will have a little cloud symbol next to them letting you know that they’re special. You can either stream these files right from the cloud, or you can download them to your local library. This makes managing your iTunes assets across devices much easier. In fact, you can pick up where you left off on certain media types through playback syncing, which allows you to resume watching movies, or TV shows that you started on your other iDevices, or vice versa.
Songs that you’ve purchased but haven’t downloaded can be streamed or added to your library
The last big change in iTunes 11 is the revamped mini-player, which is much more useful this time around. You can now see which songs will be playing next in the mini-player, as well as having the functionality to manipulate these tracks via a drop down menu. This menu allows you to add the current track to a genius list, one of your playlists, look up information on the artist, and much more. The new iTunes 11 mini-player essentially gives you the full set of options in regards to your media that you can find in the full player, so it’s a solid upgrade for those who like the minimalist view.
The new mini-player is function packed
Overall, I’m pleased with iTunes 11. The new edge-to-edge look gives the app a whole new feel, and the other improvements make managing your library and devices much more streamlined. The new look of the iTunes store now coincides with its visuals found in the iOS version, so there’s more uniformity amongst the platforms than before.
The iTunes 11 store
If you haven’t done so already I highly suggest making iTunes 11 your end all be all media player regardless if your an Apple fanboy or not. If for some reason you’re not using it yet you can grab iTunes 11 from this link. You can check out the official list of changes after the break. You’ve been liking the 11 so far…
Complete list of iTunes 11 features
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