iTunes, It’s Far From Flawless
Most of the software we use from Apple seems to run just fine, especially on their own systems. There is an exception, it’s iTunes. iTunes has been around for about ten years and has increasingly become worse over time. What used to be a simple media player has become a crazy resource hog with more and more features added what seems like every week.
Still, we hope it improves. Here are some of the things we definitely don’t like about iTunes and its current direction:
1) User Interface
Apple is a company that cares about their user interfaces. Just have a look at iOS. It’s great and very consistent throughout. iTunes is the exception. It’s not very clean compared to other media players. Some of the sub-menus are a bit poorly done and the options have grown so much within the application that it’s just become a mess.
2) Syncing Sucks
Syncing on iTunes is still a huge pain the butt. Sure, it’s one thing to have a new version of iOS update on your device or a system restore, because those tend to be huge transfers. Now, when you want to quickly just sync an App, you plug in your device and it’s a bigger pain that it should be. It’s also a bummer that after buying an App on one device, such as the iPhone, then wanting to use it on the iPad, requires syncing the iPhone to put the App on iTunes, then syncing the iPad to iTunes to put the App onto the iPad. Wireless syncing can’t happen soon enough.
Here’s one that may have plagued owners of the older Apple TV model: You would download a movie or TV show and iTunes felt the need to sync to the device. The problem is that you don’t want 6 seasons of Lost on your computer, you want them on your Apple TV. The only workaround we found is to not link it to our computer, but then we don’t have our iTunes music on Apple TV. It’s such a pain. We didn’t buy our little laptop with plans of filling it with TV shows, we bought our Apple TV with plans of filling it with 250GB of TV shows.
3) Update, Update and Update
What is it, every week now? It seems like every few days iTunes wants us to update something. These are mega updates too. Not little tweaks and fixes here and there. We are installing a new version of iTunes and writing over the old one. We understand that it’s not always simple to write this software and ensure that it works for everybody, but man do these updates keep getting bigger?
4) Downgrading is a Pain
Downgrading is a huge pain. Why would you want to downgrade, you ask? Well, aside from some of the users who were annoyed by the iTunes 10 interface, there are very good reasons. Here’s one that has happened do us at least once:
You download and install the latest update and restart iTunes, but now each time you try to hit the play button it crashes. You Google “iTunes 8.2 crashes” or something to that effect and you find that a few people seem to be having the same problem. At least now you know it’s probably the software. Now it’s time to try to downgrade. You have to find a file for the older version of the software, and now you can’t simply install it, because your computer tells you that you have a newer version of the software. You’re thinking, “So what? I want to install the other one; it actually worked!”
Now you have to go through a long process of moving and renaming folders. Thanks to Time Machine, (if you use it) this may now be easier on a Mac. For Windows it may be a different story.
5) iTunes has become bloated
Over the years iTunes has had more and more features added to it, and each year the program seems to get bigger and more bloated. It’s a little piggy when it comes to system resources (especially for Windows users, which we will talk about in a bit). Take a Look at the processes we had running, and note iTunes’ usage compared to everything else:
Here’s what those numbers and letters mean according to Apple’s website:
“PhysMem:” and “VM:” indicate overall physical RAM and virtual memory usage, respectively. The two columns on the right, “RSIZE” and “VSIZE” offer memory usage information per application. RSIZE indicates the amount of physical RAM in use by the application or process, in megabytes (“M”) or kilobytes (“K”). VSIZE indicates the amount of virtual memory Mac OS X has assigned for this process or application, in megabytes (“M”) or gigabytes (“G”).
We would like to note that iTunes was playing music at the time (Seems like a good reason to have it open).
6) iTunes for Windows is Still Horrible
While iTunes for Mac is comparatively useable, iTunes for Windows has long been problematic. It’s not very efficient and tends to crash and get error messages a lot. Most Windows users can’t stand iTunes. The only problem is that they have to use it if they want an iPhone or other iOS device. On that note, a crappy media player is definitely not a good way to get someone interested in Apple’s operating system.
There is lots of room for improvement from the software, and we hope that it happens over time. It has a lot of issues that continues to leave users unhappy. Windows users truly get the crap end of the deal here. Some of them have an iPhone or an iPad and are forced to use iTunes because of it, and end up hating the software and Apple’s shoddy implementation.