Apple iTunes 9.0.1.8 - Free download and software reviews - CNET Download.com

Apple iTunes

CNET Editors' review

As one of the most popular programs for managing music and video content on a personal computer, Apple's iTunes software has become an indispensable part of our digital life. Version 9 of iTunes brings a handful of enhancements to Apple's ubiquitous media software, including an improved storefront, tools for sharing media between multiple computers, a new Genius Mixes music experience, and a more flexible system for syncing media to the iPod or iPhone.

Design
The look of iTunes 9 is a little more polished than that of iTunes 8, but the layout is basically identical. A source menu runs as a column down the left side, offering quick access to your media library, the iTunes Store, Genius features, and playlists. Once a selection is chosen in the source menu, all the relevant content spills out into the large main window, where it can be organized and sorted using an arsenal of sophisticated, spreadsheet-like options or switched into a cover-flow view that hearkens back to the days of flipping through record crates.

One feature that received a substantial overhaul is the iTunes store. Store navigation links now run horizontally across the top of the window and include drop-down menus to quickly drill down into specific sections, such as Jazz. Front page content is more attractively arranged and allows you to launch music and video previews directly, without jumping in and out of specific album and video listings. Another welcome design change seen throughout the iTunes store is an option menu next to every purchase button, allowing you to copy the item's URL, add to your Wish List, gift the purchase, or share the link on Facebook or Twitter.

Features
What started out as a basic jukebox program for ripping and burning CDs and transferring music to your iPod has evolved over the years into a multimedia behemoth capable of handling everything from HD-movie rentals to syncing appointments with your iPhone. In spite of all the bells and whistles that have been tacked-on to iTunes over the years, at its core, iTunes still remains an excellent tool for managing your music and video collections.

Several new features have been introduced in iTunes 9, including a new iTunes LP media format, Home Sharing, Genius Mixes, and new device-syncing options. As a throwback to a bygone era when people purchased and revered full-length albums, the iTunes LP format treats music fans to an immersive album experience, filled with liner notes, lyrics, interactive menus, and bonus videos. Like any album or single purchased using iTunes, the songs included with an iTunes LP are delivered as DRM-free AAC music files that can be transferred to any iPod, iPhone, or AAC-compatible device. All of the extra stuff included with an iTunes LP--the special menus, photos, videos, and interactive elements--are only available to view directly on your computer. In spite of its limitations, the iTunes LP format should find a home with music fans looking for a richer album experience from their favorite bands.

Apple is taking a similar approach with video, adding the sort of bonus material and extras found on DVDs to many of the popular movies and TV shows available through iTunes. The format is called iTunes Extras, but just like iTunes LP, none of the added material or special menus can be transferred to an iPod or iPhone.

Apple's Genius feature, added in iTunes 8, harnesses Apple's vast collection of iTunes song data to give you educated recommendations when it comes to what music or videos may interest you based on the media you already have. The same data can also be used to create instant 25-song Genius Playlists, built around any song in your library. In iTunes 9, Apple adds another use for its Genius song recommendations called Genius Mixes. To minimize the amount of time it takes to launch iTunes and start listening to great music, Genius Mixes are automatic mixes of music from your library based around a common genre, such as Rock, Classical, Pop, or Jazz. The effect is similar to switching on a good radio station, surrendering song selection over to Apple's Genius technology, and trusting it not to mix your Zappa songs with Ella Fitzgerald.

Of all the new features included in iTunes 9, the most practical by far is Home Sharing. Up until now, multiple computers on a common network could use iTunes to stream content between computers, but were prevented from actually copying files back and forth. In iTunes 9, you can now bless locally networked computers with Home Sharing privileges, allowing unrestricted access to their music, videos, podcasts, apps, and playlists, which can be copied between computers directly within iTunes. It's a great feature for families or any multicomputer household, and can even be set up to transfer any new iTunes store purchases between all of your computers automatically. Of course, content added to your library using means other than the iTunes store (heaven forbid) is excluded from automatic updates, but can still be transferred manually through Home Sharing.

Finally, anyone with an iPod or iPhone will enjoy the extra syncing options available in iTunes 9. With your iPod or iPhone connected to your computer, the iTunes device summary window now includes a dedicated tab for iTunes U academic content (formerly lumped in with podcasts), and the syncing options for music, videos, photos, and podcasts, now offer more control over what media you want to transfer. For example, in the music tab, you now have options for syncing the specific artists, playlists, and genres you care about, and a check box for filling up any leftover space with random selections. iPhone and iPod Touch owners will be happy to see an improved Apps tab where you can arrange and customize the selection of apps that get synced to your device.

Worth the download?
Updating iTunes is about as inevitable as death and taxes. Try and resist, and some iPod or iPhone update will come along and twist your arm into updating anyhow. And while Apple hasn't done much to lighten the load of the iTunes installation package (or the bundled Quicktime install that comes with it), it's hard to complain when the program is free and offers such an impressive range of features. So yes, it's worth downloading--if for no other reason than the excellent new Home Sharing feature. Visit CNET's Download.com for the latest version of iTunes 9 (Mac or Windows).

iTunes 7.7:

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All User Reviews
  • All versions:

    2.9 stars

    out of 1,726 votes

    • 5 star: 442
    • 4 star: 293
    • 3 star: 198
    • 2 star: 218
    • 1 star: 574
  • Current version:

    2.5 stars

    out of 33 votes

    • 5 star: 2
    • 4 star: 8
    • 3 star: 7
    • 2 star: 3
    • 1 star: 13
  • My rating:

    0 stars

    Write review

Results 1-10 of 33

  • 1.0 stars

    "TOTAL TRASH"

    October 28, 2009  |   By liliaapolline

    Version: Apple iTunes 9.0.1.8

    Pros

    NONE AT ALL

    Cons

    FAILED TO INSTAL CORRECTLY AND NOW CAN NEITHER REMOVE IT OR USE ANY APPLE PRODUCTS WITH PC.
    APPLE CUSTOMER SUPPORT UTTERLY USELESS, NO USEFUL RESPONSE FOR 10 DAYS DESPITE 12-24 HOUR PROMISED RESPONSE TIME

    Summary

    DONT BOTHER TO UPGRADE, IT MAY WRECK EVERYTHING YOU ALREADY HAVE

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  • 1.0 stars

    "slow, slow, slow...."

    October 27, 2009  |   By hhs2112

    Version: Apple iTunes 9.0.1.8

    Pros

    None, Uninstall process leaves more junk then Install creates....

    Cons

    hope you don't have more than 25 songs in your library...

    Summary

    Lame, download Copy Trans Manager - way better and no apple! (and no safari, or quicktime, or bonjour, or, or, or...)

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  • 3.0 stars

    "OK for puchasing singles or albums."

    October 27, 2009  |   By Siefrage

    Version: Apple iTunes 9.0.1.8

    Pros

    Searching fairly good

    Cons

    Lost all prior playlists!

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  • 1.0 stars

    "JUNK conflicts with vista"

    October 25, 2009  |   By RM686

    Version: Apple iTunes 9.0.1.8

    Pros

    NONE have not used program because it screws up vista

    Cons

    the must quick time down load screws up my vista 64 bit trying to open other files even though quick time is no associated with these type of files. when I delete quick time everything works fine

    Summary

    the must quick time down load screws up my vista 64 bit trying to open other files even though quick time is no associated with these type of files. when I delete quick time everything works fine. The only reason I downloaded this program is because someone gave me a $25 gift certificate for itunes songs.
    I hate this company . there is no tech support for their software unless you buy one of their i pods. I will never buy an apple product from this crap company.

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  • 1.0 stars

    "Complete junk"

    October 22, 2009  |   By webstalkers

    Version: Apple iTunes 9.0.1.8

    Pros

    it stores your music files ..in a way

    Cons

    The UI has gotten worse over time. Right on Apple!

    Summary

    This application has gotten worse and worse over times. It used to have a very nice UI but the last 2 versions its gotten very sloppy and harder to sort your media. I seriously hate this application and looking for something else to replace it that will server my iphon and iphone.

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  • 4.0 stars

    "All in one: shop,entertainment,inspiration,information"

    October 22, 2009  |   By Issaland

    Version: Apple iTunes 9.0.1.8

    Pros

    iTunes is a great product for buying music, searching for music inspirations.
    The love the whole interface and cover flow.
    I don't like format m4a, so with iTunes it's easy to quick convert music to mp3 format with right click of mouse.

    Cons

    The sound is a little bit flat, even if I use equalizer, so I still prefer to play my mp3 music in WMP.
    Unable to convert whole music album at once.
    Unable to create ringtone with purchased music (error 11556).

    Summary

    I prefer iTunes rather than Rhapsody or MusicMatch because music form iTunes have the highest quality and is free form viruses. Plus you can check in your account purchased history and you will always get receipt straight to your email account.
    Purchased music goes straight to iTunes music library. It's also stored separately in Purchased option under the iTunes Store.
    If you added your other mp3 to iTunes library, after login in you'll be able to get album artwork.
    iTunes has also the widest range of music, free podcasts, and of course App Store. Also the prices of music are very competitive to many stores like Play.com or Amazon.com.
    Besides, most music online shops doesn't have information about albums, artist's bio etc. iTunes does have.
    To make your friends happy you can purchase music as a present or get coupon. The only one downside is that your friend to be able to get the present form you, must have installed iTunes on his computer too.

    iTunes is lkie no other software, like all-in-one hardware. The one of it's kind.

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  • 4.0 stars

    "Itunes gets better with each iteration"

    October 19, 2009  |   By vhendon

    Version: Apple iTunes 9.0.1.8

    Pros

    With the abilitly to customize your iphone apps by chosing which page they reside is by far my favorite change in the recent updates. I love the Family sharing option.

    Cons

    incremental updates are arriving almost weekly. I would rather not have to download the entire program; instead, push the module that is affected.

    Summary

    Great program. It's the main reason I own both the Iphone and Ipod.

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  • 3.0 stars

    "Existing iTunes 9 updated."

    October 13, 2009  |   By maldelus

    Version: Apple iTunes 9.0.1.8

    Pros

    A second source to ensure my system is current.

    Cons

    None to report.

    Summary

    I use both Rhapsody, Amazon, and iTunes. To have all three update is desired.

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  • 4.0 stars

    "I think it's a great program."

    October 10, 2009  |   By Sarge538

    Version: Apple iTunes 9.0.1.8

    Pros

    Lots of different ways to categorize and label your music. It does what it's supposed to do and make it easy.

    Cons

    A little hard to learn your way around the program.

    Summary

    Get it. Use it.

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  • 1.0 stars

    "It sucks really"

    October 7, 2009  |   By OoZooL

    Version: Apple iTunes 9.0.1.8

    Pros

    the installation takes hours, literrally

    Cons

    It just so much lame next to Winamp (audio-wise) or VLC (video-wise)

    Summary

    It really sucks ass....

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Results 1-10 of 33

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