San Francisco, Dec 4: Apple has launched a new version of its iTunes media service, overhauling its look and feel while integrating it more closely with the company's internet storage service, iCloud. The company is seeking to make it easier for people to access media content from various Apple devices without having to plug them into a desktop.
With the iCloud integration, if a user starts a movie on an iPad computer tablet, it can be restarted at the same point on a different device later. The changes have broad implications for the media industry because, with more than 435 million registered accounts, it's the largest gateway for people to legally download music, movies, television shows and software applications.
In the last fiscal year, iTunes and related media services generated $8.53 billion in revenue. The new design of iTunes moves away from the spreadsheet format that Apple has featured since its debut.
The update adds more art and information about musicians, movies and television shows. It also adds recommendation features so users can find new material. The update is one of the biggest Apple has made to iTunes since its debut more than a decade ago.
Under CEO Tim Cook, Apple is working to improve the tools that helped make it the largest seller of music while giving customers added incentive to buy more of its other products. While Apple is offering new features, it's not matching those of Spotify and Rdio.
Instead of selling downloads, those internet music services have gained traction by offering users unlimited access to entire song libraries for a subscription fee or listening to advertisements.