Bloomberg: Apple Planning iTunes Overhaul


Adam Satariano and Andy Fixmer:

Apple Inc. (AAPL) plans an overhaul of iTunes that would mark one of the largest changes to the world’s biggest music store since its 2003 debut, according to people with direct knowledge of the matter.

Apple will unveil the changes by year’s end, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the plans aren’t public. The company will more closely integrate its iCloud file-storage service with iTunes so users can more seamlessly access and manage their music, videos and downloaded software apps across different Apple gadgets, the people said. Apple also plans new features for sharing music, the people said.

Despite its iconic and auspicious rise to prominence over the past decade, iTunes remains one of the most maligned, bloated, and unresponsive pieces of software within Apple’s arsenal. Steadily slipping from a well-placed position of power to an overweight and sluggish demeanor, iTunes is utterly overdue for an overhaul.

Thankfully, according to Bloomberg, this may not be too far away at all.

Given Apple’s investment in iCloud, the migration of a great many of iTunes’ tasks to the cloud makes plenty of sense. Further, by removing the responsibility of file sanctity and management from the user, Apple will save itself a great many headaches in terms of ongoing consumer support. All-in-all, an iTunes overhaul cannot arrive soon enough.

Furthermore, I would imagine Apple’s newfound segmentation philosophy on its iOS platform will permeate into the world of the Mac. Separating distinct portions of functionality into separate apps is certainly not outside the bounds of possibility, and may, in fact, serve to re-define the relevance of several smothered and forgotten features of iTunes.

Here’s hoping such an overhaul isn’t too far off.

Apple Acquires Chomp

Writing for TechCrunch, M.G. Siegler reports that Apple has acquired app search and discovery service, Chomp. M.G. writes:

With the countdown underway to 25 billion total app downloads, there’s no disputing the success of Apple’s App Store. We live in a world of hyperbole, but Apple’s entry into this space really has changed the entire mobile world. But the App Store is far from perfect. And with its immense scale, a few problems have been revealed. The biggest one is app discovery. There are now over 500,000 apps — how do you find anything?

Right now, it’s hard and getting harder by the day. The strong get stronger while new apps often have trouble breaking in. But with an acquisition that Apple has just made, they hope to change that. Apple has bought the app search and discovery platform Chomp, we’ve learned.

Such an acquisition bodes well for forthcoming iterations of iOS, iTunes, and the Mac App Store - particularly considering the widely publicized struggle to sift through the growing swathes of apps and knock-offs.

Following this week's scam app controversy, it's good to see that Apple is - and has been - working to improve the indexing, presentation, and discovery of good apps. Let's hope such improvements continue.