With macOS Catalina, iTunes has disappeared once and for all. Music, video & # 39; s and podcasts have new apps and Finder now takes care of synchronization and device backups. This is what you need to know in a post-iTunes world.
However, iTunes is not completely gone ̵
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macOS Catalina contains a new app called Music, which uses a very similar app icon as ever used by iTunes. Here you can stream Apple Music, access previously purchased music, manage your local music library and make new digital purchases in the iTunes Store. Here you can also find the library of music videos & # 39; s from Apple.
The Music app is very similar to iTunes, although streamlined and slimmed down to focus purely on music. If you have an Apple Music subscription, the app must be automatically populated with your iCloud music library, provided that you are logged in to your Apple ID under System Preferences> Apple ID.
The Music app shows the iTunes Store or your standard star ratings. You can re-enable these features by clicking Music> Preferences and then enabling "iTunes Store" and "Star Ratings" on the General tab. These preferences are very similar to what you would ever find in iTunes, including the ability to specify local media folders on the Files tab.
Click on the quote icon in the top right corner of the screen to view lyrics if available. You can also click on the list icon next to it to see which songs are then played. Open the old iTunes mini player by clicking on the album image in the Play Now box.
If other users have shared their library locally, you'll see a small drop-down list next to & # 39; Library & # 39; in the sidebar. . Click on it to view other libraries that you can connect to.
Sharing music in macOS Catalina
If there was one thing that iTunes did well, it was sharing libraries – a simple way to share your music library with the rest of your local network by checking a box. Fortunately you can still do this; you just have to enable it via your Mac's sharing preferences:
- Go to System Preferences> Share.
- Click on Share media and give your library a name and check the option "Share media with guests".  Click on "Options" to set an optional password. You can also specify whether you want to share specific playlists or your entire music library.
Here you can also enable home sharing, which allows you to seamlessly share your library with other devices that are registered to the same Apple ID. 
Other apps that share iTunes XML data
iTunes is often used by DJs and other media professionals because of the simple approach to music organization. Many third-party applications are designed with the iTunes library in mind, allowing DJs to use their music library in third-party apps.
The removal of iTunes in favor of music has caused problems for many. XML data sharing is supported in Music, but many third-party apps have not yet been updated to account for the change. Apple advises everyone who is dependent on apps such as Traktor and Serato (who can both use iTunes XML data) to wait for the developers to patch their apps.
For now you can still use the XML data from Music in third-party apps, but you must export each playlist manually using the options under File> Library (don't forget to change the "Format" to XML ). Any changes are not synchronized back with your music library, so this is really a temporary solution.
Device synchronization is now handled by Finder
 iPhone, iPad and iPod device management is now fully handled by Finder. This includes synchronizing media, manually updating iOS, restoring to factory settings and making local backups. Apple has essentially moved the controls that were once found in iTunes to Finder.
To manage your iOS device in macOS Catalina:
- Connect your iPhone or iPad with your Mac via a Lightning cable.
- Unlock your device and tap "Trust" and then enter your passcode when prompted.
- Open a Finder window and scroll down in the sidebar until you see "Tim & # 39; s iPhone" (or whatever your iPhone is called).
- Click on the iPhone and click on "Trust" then wait.
Now your iPhone should appear in the Finder window and a series of tabs for managing device settings and media. On the General tab you can check "Show this iPhone when on Wi-Fi" to enable wireless synchronization (note that this is a lot slower than using a Lightning cable).
These controls are almost identical to those in iTunes before it retired. You can choose to manually back up your iPhone here, ideal if you are switching from an old iPhone to a new one. If you want to manage your iOS device backups manually, you will still find them in the
~ / Library / Application Support / MobileSync / folder.
Click on each of the tabs to manage music, movies, TV shows & other content that you may want to sync with your iOS device. The Files tab allows you to download files and upload them to app folders, a feature previously known as & # 39; iTunes file sharing & # 39 ;. Use drag and drop to copy files to and from your mobile device.
Note: Apple has remained backwards compatible with earlier versions of iOS, so you can synchronize pre-iOS 13 devices with Catalina and the Finder. If you have upgraded your iOS device to iOS 13, you must use Catalina to synchronize and manage your device (earlier macOS versions do not work).
Listen to podcasts in the new podcasts app
A new app called Podcasts is now used for podcast management. This looks almost identical to the Music app, except that you will find new episodes of your favorite podcasts instead of music. Podcasts that you want to sync with your iPhone must be managed with Finder.
You can use the Podcasts app to browse the Apple Podcasts library, subscribe to new shows, and see what's popular by clicking Top Charts. Go to Podcasts> Preferences to set options, such as how often the app checks for new content, when new episodes are downloaded, and disables the automatic deletion of played episodes.
Downloaded podcast episodes no longer appear in your iTunes library folder and can instead be found hidden in
~ / Library / Group Containers / 243LU875E5.groups.com.apple.podcasts / Library / Cache .
View video content in the TV app
The latest new app is called TV, and despite its name it is a home for all video content that you can buy, rent or subscribe to. That includes everything you've previously purchased on iTunes, new films for rental, and the upcoming Apple TV + subscription service.
Click on the Library tab to quickly access videos that you already have. The other tabs are for browsing, renting and buying new content. Click on a movie or TV show to watch trailers and find out more about them. You also see a list of actors and crew involved in the film, and you can click on one of them to see more of their content.
Start TV> Preferences and click on Files to define the desired media folder location. You can import movies and other content by dragging and dropping them. Everything you download is stored in your normal Movies folder as a MOVPKG extension that can be played by the TV app. Third-party apps cannot display these files properly due to the DRM used.
Removing iTunes is one of the most radical changes in macOS Catalina. The use of special apps for music, podcasts and video makes sense. Removing iOS device management from iTunes is a step that Apple probably should have made years ago. Things are so much more logical now.
These are not the only features that we like about Apple's latest desktop operating system. See what else is new in macOS Catalina and whether you need to upgrade or wait.
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