Apple backtracks with release of latest iTunes version

Without much fanfare, Apple has debuted iTunes 12.6.3. The good news is that this version once again offers the ability to download ringtones and App Store apps using an iTunes desktop version – a feature that was removed with iTunes 12.7.

The company says it did this because “certain business partners might still need to use iTunes to install apps”. The software is, however, on offer to anybody who wants to restore the download features that were lost with the launch of iTunes 12.7.

You can download installation packages for both 32-bit and 64-bit PCs and Macs from the Apple support page. After installing the software, you might have to rebuild your iTunes Library. It’s not as difficult as you might think. Just press and hold the Option key during the app’s launch and select ‘Create Library’. Use a different name than your current library and then use the ‘Add to Library’ feature to move all your albums over.

When Apple launched iTunes 12.7 in September it stated that the new version was developed specifically for movies, music, podcasts, TV shows and audio books, which is why the integrated App Store was removed. This meant that ringtones and apps could only be downloaded if you had an iOS device, e.g. an iPhone.

The new version is compatible with iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone 8, iOS 11 and iPhone X. It’s unclear how long the company will still offer iTunes 12.6.3. It doesn’t come with any technical support, but for those who would like to enjoy the app download functionality it might be a useful standby until Apple delivers a better option.

Readers who have already installed a later edition of iTunes can download this iTunes version on their 64-bit and 32-bit PCs as well as Macs and then run the installation file. After the software installs, they can proceed to run apps with iTunes. They also won’t get any prompts to download later versions of iTunes once they’ve installed this particular edition.

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