San Jose: Apple announced the demise of its ground-breaking iTunes platform in favour of three more tailored apps, as it refines its offerings to be a stage for digital music, films, podcasts and more.
iTunes transformed the way people buy and listen to music after its launch in 2001, but is now being phased out, Apple senior vice president of software engineering Craig Federighi said, while helping kick off the technology giant’s annual gathering of developers in Silicon Valley.
“The future of iTunes is not one app, it’s three,” Federighi said.
“Apple Music, Apple Podcasts and Apple TV.”
Since the launch of iTunes, lifestyles have shifted to streaming music, video and more from the Internet cloud as online data centres and high-bandwidth connections gave rise to on-demand entertainment expectations.
The iTunes software let users manage and listen to music collections as well as buy digital versions of songs.
“There is no reason for iTunes to exist, period,” said Creative Strategies analyst Carolina Milanesi.
“If I want music, I have an app. If I want TV, I have the app. That is how people are thinking today.”
The transformation of iTunes into three separate apps comes with Apple preparing the international launch of an eponymous TV+ later this year.
The new content will be available on an upgraded Apple TV app, which will be on smart television sets and third-party platforms including Roku and Amazon’s Fire TV.
The California company showed off its podcast app on Monday as well, and said that service would be tailored to work independently on its smartwatch.
Some features from iTunes will be melded into the other Apple apps.
It remains to be seen what will become of the iTunes version tailored for Windows-powered computers, or how people will be able to move music libraries they have amassed.
Software innovations and improvements revealed at the opening day of the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) touched the company’s entire line-up from wrist-wear to iPhones and Car Play along with smart assistant Siri.