Everything About iTunes: Music, Movies, Subscriptions and Gift Cards

iTunes cover

If you thought iTunes was just for music, then it’s time to think again. Apple’s iTunes is more than just a music store. Welcome to FlickZee Blogs, where we keep you updated with all the happenings in the Digital Media world. In today’s post, you’ll read about iTunes, the content catalogue that it offers you, and the fee that you have to pay to enjoy that content. You’ll be surprised to know how iTunes has evolved from music to movies and even TV show store.

What is iTunes?

iTunes started out as a music management app in January 2001 by Apple Inc. It later modified itself to include movies and TV series as well in 2005. iTunes has over 100,000 movies in 35 categories, from the likes of “Kong: Skull Island”, “La La Land” and “Bahubali 2”. There are also hundreds of TV series and animated shows for the whole family.

iTunes is available on Windows and iOS devices. Movies are available either to buy or rent for a limited time. They can be streamed immediately or downloaded to watch offline. Content in varying genres ensures that the whole family can enjoy. And a purchased movie may be viewed in up to 6 devices, with special permission for children where purchases are required to be confirmed by parents. A special feature is iTunes Extras, which has alternate endings and deleted scenes which are not available otherwise.

What Can I Watch on iTunes Store?

Well, what would you like to watch? Or listen to for that matter? iTunes has a huge library of music, movies, and TV shows for your entertainment. We’ll cover all of them one by one.

iTunes Movies

You can either rent or buy a movie from the iTunes store. You can search for a movie by typing the name in the search bar or browse by the genres listed on the platform. The movie catalogue of the iTunes is huge and loaded with popular movies like Avengers: Infinity War, Harry Potter, and The Lion King.

Popular iTunes Movies

  1. Avengers: Infinity War
  2. Life Of The Party
  3. Ready Player One
  4. Rampage
  5. A Quiet Place

iTunes TV Shows

Along with the movies, you can also browse the popular and latest TV shows in the iTunes Store. Game of Thrones, Flash, American Gods, Arrow, Breaking Bad, House of Cards, and Friends; these are some of the TV shows that you can enjoy on iTunes.

Popular iTunes TV Shows

  1. Game of Thrones
  2. Suits
  3. Friends
  4. Westworld
  5. The Handmaid’s Tale

iTunes Podcasts

If you’re a podcast kind of person then iTunes can serve that need of yours as well. With iTunes store, you can watch thousands of Podcasts on a variety of topics like Career, Self Help, Government, Social, Comedy, Games & Sports,  and technology.

Popular iTunes Podcasts

  1. How to Be Awesome at Your Job in Careers
  2. Crazy Jokes’ Podcast in Comedy
  3. On Purpose with Jay Shetty in Health
  4. Clublife in Music
  5. Ted Talks Technology in Technology

iTunes Music

Well, this is how everything started. On iTunes, you can listen to and manage your music library. Most of the latest songs are released on iTunes as well and this gives you an upper hand in exclusive access to some good piece of music. From R&B to Hip-Hop, there over 43 million songs to make your head nod to the beats.

Popular iTunes Songs & Music Videos

  1. Gangnam Style by Psy
  2. Roar by Katy Perry
  3. Despacito by Luis Fonsi
  4. They Don’t Care by Michael Jackson
  5. Kamli by Sunidhi Chauhan

How To Rent or Buy Content on iTunes?

Buying/Renting a movie or TV show on iTunes store requires the Apple ID to login to the iTunes either through the smartphones or desktops. Also, iTunes is integrated into Apple TV so that you don’t have to download it separately for the Apple TV.

iTunes rentals and purchase

Once you’ve got your Apple ID, follow these steps:

  1. Launch the iTunes on your device and login with your Apple ID.
  2. Search or browse the movie/TV show you want to download.
  3. Once you’ve found the movie/TV show, click on the title. This will lead you to the description page.
  4. You’ll see the price for the movie under the description. You” also find the renting price next to purchasing price, if the content is availble for rent.
  5. Complete the payment and enjoy the movie/ TV show.

Note: You can start watching a rental anytime in between 30 days. Once you’ve started watching the rental, it will expire after 48 hours.

What Are The Features of iTunes Store?

Despite the huge content catalogue that you get with iTunes, there are a lot of other notable features of the platform that contribute to an enhanced User Experience. Read them out below.

Offline Downloading

Once you’ve bought or rented the desired movie/TV show, you can download it to your device for offline streaming. You need to find the bought or rental content, and tap or click on the download icon beside it. For rentals, once you start watching the content, the 48 hours timer will start even if you’re streaming it offline.

You can access your downloaded content in the ‘library’ section of iTunes website or app. Note that you can’t download a rental on more than one device. To download a rental on a different device, you need to delete it from the first device.

HD Playback

The videos on iTunes range from Standard Quality to 4K Ultra High Definition quality. If you have a 4K supporting device such as Apple TV, then you can enjoy a high-definition entertainment. Some of the videos also feature High Dynamic Range (HDR), Dolby Atoms, and Dolby Vision for the better visual and audio experience.

When you first play the rented or bough video, it automatically gets played in the highest quality that is available for that video. You can also toggle between these picture qualities depending on the speed of your Internet connection.

Search & Recommendation

If you have just finished watching a movie or TV show, and you’re feeling like watching similar stuff again, then iTunes’ recommendation system is there for you. Better yet, you can also see what other users are watching after the movie or TV show you’ve just watched. Also, you can narrow down your search with the efficient browsing and search feature on iTunes.

Multiple Device Streaming

If you’ve purchased or rented a video on one device, then you stream it on any other supported device anytime. With ‘iTunes Family Sharing’, up to 6 devices with different Apple ID can share each others’ iTunes content. In this way, you can stream your iTunes store purchased video on up to 6 devices at a time. The rentals, however, can’t be streamed on more than 1 device at the same time.

But, if you’ve downloaded a rented or purchased video on one device, then you can stream it on any other device by logging in the iTune with the same Apple ID that was used for downloading the content.

Which Devices Support iTunes?

If you’re impressed with iTunes and want to try it out, then you must do so on the compatible devices.

iTunes supported devices

Following is the complete list of the devices that support iTunes.

  1. Mac/PC: You can download iTunes Software for Windows and for Mac.
  2. iOS: iTunes is available for iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch.
  3. Media Players: You can stream iTunes from your Apple TV without downloading a separate app.

Is iTunes Available in My Country?

You might have the iTunes app on your phone but still, you can’t see any movies or TV shows listed on that. That’s because Apple has released a limited version of the iTunes store in some countries. In India, for example, the complete iTunes store is available for the users except for the TV shows and iTunes Radio. You can read the complete list of countries and the supported iTunes content, here.

How Popular iTunes Is?

To give you an idea, in 2013, iTunes had 575 million active user accounts and it served 315 million mobile devices that year. That’s almost double of current US’ population. Following statistics will help you to to get an idea about the popularity of iTunes.

Availability: 154 countries

Music: 50 million+ songs worldwide | 40,000+ Music Videos (US)

Movies (US): 45,000+ movies

TV Shows (US): 3,000+ TV shows

Others (US): 1,000,000 podcasts | 20,000 Audiobooks

Sales: 35 billion songs (2014) | 1 million+ HD episodes (2009)

iTunes: Is it Worth The Bucks?

iTunes store has everything that a binge-watcher needs; HD TV shows and movies, Lots of songs and podcasts. One can spend days on iTunes watching and enjoying the various content. But it might not be for everyone. If you’re not a fan of Apple’s isolated and exclusive ecosystem, then iTunes might not appeal to you. However, you would love iTunes if:

  1. You want all of the entertainment media at one place; books, apps, podcasts, audiobooks, movies, TV shows, songs, and music videos.
  2. You have no problem in renting or buying movies or TV shows.
  3. Apple is your go-to digital ecosystem.

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Shalin Deval