Apple is streamlining iTunes a bit by removing the App Store from the platform, a step supposedly taken towards making iTunes an exclusive music app. After users install the latest version, 12.7, they will have no access to the App Store from their desktop.

Apple iTunes update
JESHOOTS / Pixabay

De-bloating iTunes

The Cupertino, California-based company has long been on the receiving end of criticism for the over-crowded iTunes app. Apple now seems to have paid heed to that criticism and is looking to start afresh by reducing bloat and restoring the original purpose of the app.

Apple’s support page for iTunes declares a focus on “music, TV shows, podcasts and audiobooks,” meaning that users will need to use their iOS devices to manage the apps installed on them.

“If you previously used iTunes to sync apps or ringtones to your iOS device, use the new App Store or Sounds Settings on iOS to re-download them without your Mac,” the iPhone maker said.

Previously, all downloaded iOS apps, ringtones and books for PC were available in the iTunes media folder. However, anything that’s no longer available can always be transferred from the user’s computer to their iOS device with the help of a USB cable.

Other changes in this iTunes update

Apple’s latest iTunes update, however, enables Apple music subscribers to sync their iOS 11 devices and social music sharing. This iTunes update also adds a social networking function that enables Apple Music subscribers to create profiles and follow each other.

Other changes with this iTunes update are minor design changes, including the relocation of iTunes U to Podcasts, while the Internet radio stations are now available in the music library sidebar. It seems like Apple is not interested in Internet radio any more, as it has added the option to switch off the feature completely, notes AppleInsider. Windows users will also not get iBooks in their iTunes client.

The new version of iTunes with its overhauled look and interface will offer users a more editorial approach. Now in place of the list of apps, there will be larger imagery, videos and written content about notable new releases. This will open new avenues for developers to market their apps, notes TechCrunch.

iTunes to help sales of Apple TV 4K

The California-based company is also hopeful that iTunes will drive sales of its Apple TV 4K ahead. iTunes will offer a string of new titles from studios such as Sony Pictures Entertainment, Warner Bros., 20th Century Fox and Lionsgate in Ultra HD for the same price as the regular HD version. Previously, Apple and film studios were in a bit of a tussle over premium pricing on the Ultra HD versions, reports Variety.

Apple’s iTunes update was just a small announcement made on Tuesday. The major news everyone was anxiously waiting for was the launch of the tenth anniversary iPhone, the first phone from the company to come with a full-screen display. The iPhone X also has Super Retina resolution, a glass design and wireless charging. The handset will come with support for the Qi charging standard.

On Tuesday, Apple shares closed down 0.42% at $160.82. Year to date, the stock is up almost 39%.