iTunes 12.7 Released, Removes App Store

Sep 13, 2017 - 143 Comments


Apple has released iTunes 12.7 for Mac and Windows users, a point release update that brings some notable changes to the music and media player app.

The new version of iTunes adds support for iOS 11 while simultaneously removing the iOS App Store from being included in iTunes. Additionally, iTunes 12.7 removes the ability to sync iOS apps and ringtones on an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch via iTunes on the desktop. Instead, Apple wants you to manage and download iOS apps from the iPhone or iPad itself via the native iOS App Store application.

Users can download the latest iTunes release from the software update mechanism of iTunes itself, via the Mac App Store Updates tab, or from the iTunes download page here.

The release notes accompanying the iTunes 12.7 download are as follows:

The new iTunes focuses on music, movies, TV shows, and audiobooks. It adds support for syncing iOS 11 devices and includes new features for –

– Apple Music. Now discover music with friends. Members can create profiles and follow each other to see music they are listening to and any playlists they’ve shared.

– Podcasts. iTunes U collections are now part of the Apple Podcasts family. Search and explore free educational content produced by leading schools, universities, museums, and cultural institutions all in one place.

If you previously used iTunes to sync apps or ringtones on your iOS device, use the new App Store or Sounds Settings on iOS to redownload them without your Mac.

When you launch iTunes 12.7 you will see a pop-up window with an alert informing the user that iTunes has been “updated to focus on music, movies, TV shows, podcasts, and audiobooks” and telling the user to use App Store or Sound Settings in iOS to deal with apps and ringtones.

iTunes message removing App Store

It’s worth mentioning that iTunes 12.6.x is currently compatible with iOS 11, though that may change when the final version of iOS 11 is released to the public on September 19.


Related articles:

Posted by: Paul Horowitz in iTunes, News


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  1. Kam Phagura says:

    I think its time for me to say goodbye to apple, can’t believe how much time I have spent trying to sort this … used to simply synch my phone and was happy as Larry as it was all there in one place.

  2. Just Cause says: is available as of Sept 12, 2018, OS X Daily please update post

  3. Simon says:

    I just found out iTunes dropped the App Store and I’m shocked. What a bizarre decision! This is very unfriendly, combative and user-hostile behaviour from Apple.

    The beauty of having app backups on your Mac was that if an app update turned out to be bad, you likely had a former version still on your Mac or in one of your Time Machine backups that you could restore from. Apple has taken this option away. It’s also quicker to restore apps to a device that’s been ‘set up as new’.

    Decisions like this erode my confidence in the iOS ecosystem and make me feel like Apple isn’t on my side.

  4. Brian says:

    The huge downside to this is that an App that I created in 2009 (Old Montreal) and removed from sale on the App Store in 2016, has disappeared from my iTunes backup. That means I cannot load my own app onto an old phone to demonstrate it to clients, developers, etc. I’m very disheartened by this unilateral action on the part of Apple.

  5. Shawn says:

    If I go to a Android is there a way to transfer my music from iTunes? My music is the only reason i have stayed with the iPhone since the 3GS.

  6. Christine Kernohan says:

    I too am totally frustrated that you can no longer sync apps from your phone to itunes. it was the best way to ‘tidy up’ the apps on your phone and move them to sensible places

    i prefer to do the complete back up of my phone to my pc – it has made transferring to a new phone so much easier… i have never got into icloud backups… would rather have it all to hand

    please bring it syncing apps back apple.. stop mucking around with what works

  7. Data Geek says:

    I’m a bit late to the whine party, but I need to jump in there too. This is a terribly myopic decision from the Product Mgrs. at Apple. They might consider me a luddite for using desktop iTunes to manage my apps on various devices, but it works for me. And, it is absolutely necessary. Living in a rural community with a very low bandwidth connection to the iCloud, it was essential that I only needed to download a single copy of each app once – and still be able to update numerous iOS devices with that one updated copy.

    It’s not bad enough that the DevOps mindset produces app updates every 3 days. Now I have to download each of those updates times 5 iPhones and 4 iPads to support my household – on a 2 Mbps link.

  8. J. White says:

    They’ve got to be kidding me. iTunes was terrible already (worsening with each new release), but taking away one of the few useful functions is not a way to make it better. “Streamlined?”… my foot. Do they really expect us to download each app on every device individually, and organize the app placement on that little screen? That is crazy.

    Its been a long time coming, because Apple has been headed in the wrong (more evil) direction for a while… time to move to android. Ugh!

  9. Ray Low says:

    I am too been using apple products since 1990’s till just a week ago that I have SWITCHED to Android. I feel the same way too and really pissed off with apple thinking that they are jus not competitive without Steve Job.

    I already ordered my Android.

    F— Apple man!!!

  10. Anders says:

    Just updated to iTunes 12.7.x without knowing that Apple had wiped out the entire app section!!!
    Why?!? What?!! Sooo many reasons NOT to do that Apple!
    I’ve been a loyal Apple user since 1992… well, that loyalty is soon gone, with all the stupid “we want total control of how you manage your computer” updates the recent years.
    Please command Z that iTunes Apple!!! Sooo stupid!

  11. Michael says:

    Learned many years ago – never update Apple software until its confirmed working, free of feature removals, bugs, etc. This is life with the new Apple. Best to be 1 version behind with working software such as iPhoto, or iTunes 12.6.2. Photos is not up to spec. I never buy apps directly on the iPhone, only through iTunes where I can browse and read without having to hold a device in my hand, and download apps in the background while using my mac for work or whatever. And wirelessly sync those apps to multiple devices of my choosing, without having to hunt them down on each device. How foolish to remove an entire store.

  12. Peter says:


    If you do an ENCRYPTED backup, you will keep everything EXCEPT the music that DOES NOT get backed up from the iPhone to the backup file because theoretically, you cannot transfer music FROM the iPhone.

    Make sure you have your ringtones in a separate file to drag them to the iPhone.

    But music is a real issue. I spent two hours on the phone with a top level Apple person. We couldn’t get music working. Most came from CD’s downloaded with Windows Media player and there was essentially no way to get it into iTunes.

    Fortunately, all of it is on my iPhone and I am trying various third party software to back it up as a single file to my Windows computer.

    I wonder why Apple make great hardware but assigns iTunes to people with high school equivalency diplomas.

  13. Mike says:

    I don’t know so much about firing a whole herd of programmers for this disaster. What Apple needs to do is fire everybody in their marketing department. It seems obvious to me that the entire Apple marketing division is living in a pink fluffy bubble and the real quick fix would be to have their entire marketing department escorted off the premises and replace them with some real world marketing experts.

  14. Glenn Bailey says:

    Capitalism at it’s finest, we want them to do it this way, we want them to do it that way, so in order to do that they manipulate everybody to fall in line, just more corporate greed. Never again will I buy an apple product because they keep on changing the rules you can’t even copy/paste music to your devices from Windows, that’s another pet peeve of mine, Apple doesn’t like Microsoft and MS doesn’t like Apple so it’s the consumer stuck in the middle. F@#$ you apple, no more of my money in exchange for your frustrations!!!!

  15. Baljeet Tjinder says:

    And this is why 1. I never update iTunes and 2. Why I switched to Android.

  16. Shannon Hoyos says:

    This is SO frustrating😡 I’ve always used apple but now I’m switching. All my tones are gone and I can’t get them back on my phone. I wasted 3 hours trying! No apps work without iTunes syncing. Stupid. Now I don’t know who’s calling me. Annoying! I had tones for all my kids and some other family members. Apple continues to disappoint.

  17. John Wilson says:

    Makes perfect evil sense that they would do this.

    It is Apple’s plan to get you to agree to let them search every bit of data that goes into your device. But unless you give them permission to search in Apps, they can’t.

    With iOS 11, Spotlight won’t Search FOR Apps unless you enable “Search IN App” for every all the Apps you want Spotlight to find.

    So, of course they don’t want to make it easy for us to rearrange our apps to put the most commonly used apps on the first few screens where we can find them without Spotlight.

    So, we get to spend a few hours dragging or favorite apps across 15 or 20 app screens.

    Apple, that great vacuum in cyberspace.

  18. Ivorstonker says:

    I used ITunes for App downloads as the Macmini App store is terrible and has next to nothing in comparison to ITunes Apps.

    The problem is I work for a School which has over 100 IPads, Mac App store is impossible so ITunes was a workaround, I now have potentially over a 100 IPads that are usless !

    Waiting for Apple to get back to me, their first response was a URL to the generic help forum !!! Doh !

    • Ewen says:

      You can download an alternative version of iTunes, 12.6.3, where you can still use the App Store:

      That way you can continue to manage apps from iTunes with iTunes 12.6.3, download it and install it, then turn off updates so you don’t get a newer version that removes the APp Store again.

      Either downgrading or using iTunes 12.6.3 is the only way to get App Store for iTunes again.

  19. LinuxKen says:

    I am sorry to tell the toads at Software Development but removing a major feature is NOT an incremental ‘update’
    That should have been iTunes 13 with red flags all over it.
    iTunes is one of the 3 apps/reasons I have to run a Windows 7 VM on my Linux boxes.
    Arghhhh Apple I love your products (2 iPads & 4 iPhones) but your software ‘engineers’ need a swift kick in the arse.

  20. Jon says:

    Really bad idea to remove apps from iTunes. Especially without warning us before upgrading. I only found out after I tried to buy an app and the link which sent me to the iTunes store didn’t work. It only found podcasts with the same name as the app I was trying to buy. Maybe you should tell your developers about the move too.

  21. Abouzar says:

    I have 10 products of apple company, I don’t understand why they are taking away apps option from itunes.
    This is not rational for me to download 1 app over 10 times for each of my Idevices.
    If they keep doing this limitation I have no choice to buy androids.

  22. mpski says:

    So I cannot group and move my apps to organize them on my phone from my computer any longer ???

  23. Susan Wolf says:

    This is the kind of completely insane decision that companies make once they outsource both their customer “support” and brain-power to third-world countries.

    I swear on all that is holy, and unholy, that I will never, under any circumstances, purchase any Apple product again. There are suitable replacement products available at a fraction of the price that Apple charges, and now we can no longer trust them to do anything. I have purchased many phones, desktop computers and tablets from Apple in the past, but that ends today.

    I am an educated person, with several degrees, and yet I can’t find printable words that truly express my outrage at this truly idiotic decision.

  24. Caterina M. says:

    Dear Apple R&D fellows, in case you haven’t realized it yet, you have comitted a cardinal sin: pissing off most of your customers – especially those who have the money to pay your expensive products! Why change something that works? yes, things have to improve-but this is a serious unimprovement. we are not all of us 20 year old users with nothing to do but seting up a new iphone, ipad and mac with hundreads of applications manually and all the time in the world. this is absurd. concetrate on REALLY NEW things, not disrupting our daily lives.
    I don’t have the time to lose in order to make all these changes manually to 4 phones, 2ipads and the computers (both for my husband and myself).
    on the other hand, thanks for saving me the money for 2 new phones, 1 ipad and a laptop.

  25. Ian says:

    This really SUCKS. I do not have unlimited data AND besides, I must now individually update 3 devices, and triple my data usage. I used the desktop as my ‘central app repository’, download updates (and new apps) once ONLY and distributed via WiFi. Truly disappointed :-(

  26. Chris says:

    What audience do you poll to make these changes???? Did your developers feel these tabs were so in e essery they had to be removed but your customer didn’t have a say.

    Good job, Apple… You kind of boloed this one…

  27. Peter says:

    This iTunes update has also removed syncing to the first generation Apple TV. This has always been far superior to streaming with later Apple TVs. Apple Support helped me restore to iTunes 12.6 but they also suggested giving feedback to Apple (who sometimes reinstitute features if there is enough demand)

  28. Allen says:

    I don’t Know what APPLE was thinking here. I guess APPLE hired 1 to many MS Programmers. BIG IMPROVEMENT, NOT!!!! Apple apparently thought it was to EASY to rearrange apps on a computer Screen, so They decided to make it harder to drag across multiple screens and in new / other folders. NOT to mention Searching for new ios app’s

  29. George in Eugene says:

    Well, lets see how this works. I paid for an app, decided that I do not currently need it, and “removed” it. Now, in the past I could go into iTunes and simply add it back to my iPhone. Nope, no more. And they are not backed in iCloud.
    It appears that Apple is so poor that they want me to re-purchase them.
    Oh, not to mention that Apple apparently thought it was to easy to rearrange apps on a computer, so decided to make it harder to drag across multiple screens.
    My, my. What an “Improvement”!

  30. Matt says:

    How do I get apps in my collection THAT I PAID FOR and are no longer available in the app store back onto my iPad? They are still on my computer in the iTunes mobile applications folder, but the method to transfer them via iTunes is gone!

  31. TK says:

    This is a major change that I didn’t hear anything about. I just updated like I always do and didn’t really read the update box. Even if I had I probably wouldn’t have realized what was going to happen.

    With this change how do I see my full listing of apps? I have some apps on my phone and some apps on my iPad for the kids. Some I have but don’t have them downloaded on either device but maybe I’d like to. Geez this is a big pain in the a**.

    So if Apple is going to trim iTunes of this I have an idea PUT THE FUNCTIONALITY IN OH, THE APP STORE! You have a stand alone application for just apps so migrate everything that was functioning in iTunes for apps to THE APP STORE. Seems to be a simple solution to me. But what do I know, :(

  32. Pat says:

    For those of you suggesting going to apple’s feedback page. Good luck because there isn’t even an option to select the 12.7 under the version of iTunes you are running (which is required btw)

    Any other suggestions?

  33. Kimberley says:

    I have noticed the Tones tab in the main music library has also been omitted, but the Tones tab in my device library still remains, which makes it an absolute pain in the arse to transfer ringtones onto my iPhone 7! Since this has been removed, I don’t know whereabouts iTunes has put the ringtone files after I’ve put them into iTunes. I cannot find them!

  34. Mustapha Othman says:

    You know what keep your update’s with ya apple, I do not need it anymore until you decide to get back to what u used to, Just some body tell me how I suppose to do with an 4 iPhones + 2 iPads in my house updating and installing the same app in each device’s with a limited bandwidth 100 GB/Mo ! WTH apple that’s really suck’s, Mr Cook enough please ><

  35. Doug Dolde says:

    Except Apple won’t let >100 MB apps update over LTE even if you have unlimited data. This is so stupid I’d like to kick Cook in the nuts

  36. ChrisSt150 says:

    That is what I wrote to Apple:

    Guess many customers, have the same question.
    The Last iTunes war not overbloated or whatever. I was a nice piece of software.
    I used to arrange my iOS Apps and cruise in the App Stores (Germany Switzerland).
    It was much more convenient than on my iPhone. May there be any chance to enter the store again on the mac some time??

    Chris from Lake Constance Germany

  37. johnaerial says:

    “Edit Playlist” used to be so simple. Easy to do and easy to see and easy to adjust. Since upgrading to 12.7, it is no longer so easy. I spent more than two hours with Apple ‘Support’ and after trying everything known to them, they eventually phoned Cuppertino and found that the ‘Edit’ facility has been changed to something else so user-unfriendly that I was unable to understand it. This also affects the ability to create a Playlist. If you value the original means of creating Playlists, I urge you to contact and ask them to re-instate the original Edit Playlist.

  38. Taoufik says:

    hello what about sync the books and magazine ?

  39. Peter says:

    As odd as it seems, it appears that Apple has taken a tool that worked pretty well for most people, and through the “upgrade” returned it to the dark ages. I cannot believe that in order to create or edit a simply playlist, I now have to toggle between two open windows. It is absolutely horrendous.

  40. Chico DeBarge says:


  41. Chris Elm says:

    I find it extremely annoying that Apple decided to do away the App store and library in the new iTunes update. It seems they do not care about their clients or customers.

  42. Jimmy says:

    Would a petition at provide any pressure to restore the app features in iTunes. I wish someone with better verbal skills than I would start one.

  43. Jim says:

    Was this new iTunes update a SURPRISE to anyone else ? I had automatic update turned OFF and was surprised to see the newest version.

  44. Jim says:

    Was this new iTunes update a SURPRISE to anyone else ? I had automatic update turned OFF and was surprised to see the newest version.

  45. Dan G says:

    I just updated iExplorer. It’s an Mac app for backing up the iPhone. I have only been using it to back up Voicemail etc. but it seems to be pretty hefty. Anyone else have this and what do you think?

  46. Donald says:

    Used to use iTunes 12.6.2 on my old Macbook Pro OS 10.10.5. I can access to all the apps I used to download through Store within iTunes. After update to iTunes 12.7 from (previous Version 12.6.2) I can’t access to all my previous apps I used to download through App Store within iTunes & also not able to download any more apps. I am not happy about it. Can Apple fix the issues ASAP!!

  47. Evan B. says:

    Half of my mobile apps have been downloaded from iTunes App Store (until the App Trimming thing), and half directly from iOS App Store. I back up/sync with iTunes. I can see ALL of the updates in the Updates tab on iOS, and only the half downloaded from iTunes in the iTunes App Store Updates window. A bit apprehensive from there. What will happen with the apps I downloaded from iTunes (then synced/backed up regularly) once I upgrade to iTunes 12.7? They should all be on the iPad, right? (NOT talking about apps Devs have stopped supporting). Nothing to re-download. Ton of data from work. I can then delete the .ipa files from my laptop. Thank you.

  48. Peter says:

    I used to be able to edit my playlists in itunes. Now the option is gone. Am I missing something here?

  49. Michael says:

    Ok, really quick question. How do I get the really funny tones I make with iRinger on to my phone now? I NEVER use the standard ones. Why can’t I be an Apple customer AND try to be individual?

  50. Vince Medlock says:

    Not sure whether this is good or not. iTunes has always been a kludgy way to manage iDevices. If it doesn’t work out… well, I already gave Linux loaded in a boot volume and I’m due for a phone upgrade. May as well give Android a try.

  51. katbel says:

    What a stupid decision, I don’t have iCloud and neither I want to backup my devices there. BTW iCloud backups are not even encrypted. Look at Equifax: do I need to give thieves more to steal?!
    I used to love everything Apple was doing
    Not anymore :(

  52. vdiv says:

    remove iTunes 12.7.BS:
    # sudo rm -r /Applications/

    download and install ver 12.6.2 from:

    from Time Machine restore /Users//Music/iTunes/iTunes Library.itl to the version prior to 12.7.BS “upgrade”

  53. Marsha says:

    Having the Apple Store was one of the things I enjoyed best in iTunes.
    Being able to SYNC my iPhone and backup was a real asset with iTunes.
    It was easier than the ICloud.
    You could plug in your phone and click it to do the back up.
    Also download a backup to your computer.
    Everything was a your touch and now will be gone.
    I don’t like this change. Not everyone uses all the apps on the iPhone but use the computer at home.
    Especially the older customers!
    This is certainly not a good move that I support.
    Very disappointing!

    • Nate says:

      Tim Cook sucks. Apple is insane. Seriously, it’s unbelievable that they charge more for their iPhones than ever before, yet continue to take away the accessibility of them. Like, that was the ENTIRE POINT of the iPhone. To combine the iPod and phone into one, easy to use device. The new ios music app sucks too (unless you have Apple music, which I will NEVER get). And now iTunes is even LESS functional. Like why even remove the ringtone and app manager? Just to save 200 MB? Seriously, what were they thinking?!?

  54. Jay says:

    How to Uninstall and Reinstall iTunes on Mac (macOS Sierra)

    Step 1. Go to the Applications folder and find the iTunes app.

    Step 2. Right-click on iTunes and select Get Info.

    Step 3. Locate and click on the padlock icon at the bottom right of the window, and you need to enter your admin password.

    Step 4. Click and expand the Sharing & Permissions section. Change the privileges for “everyone” to Read & Write. This will give you complete control of the iTunes application so you can uninstall iTunes from your Mac.

    Step 5. Close the Get Info window and drag the iTunes application to the Trash. You can still put back iTunes if you haven’t emptied the Trash.

  55. Jim Roberts says:

    The one thing I miss is being able to change/ manage the screens on my iPhone. Yeah, I know I can move them around on the phone, but seeing all 4 screen on my Mac, I could easily move apps around, add them to folders or take them out of folders with just a few drags or clicks. And I now need a Wi-Fi connection elsewhere to download the updates. Fortunately (for now) I can automatically download all my podcasts thru iTunes and automatically sync.

  56. Joe says:

    I don’t know what Apple is thinking anymore. They have become annoying.

  57. Ted says:

    I hope ya’ll realize that you’re barking up the wrong tree, right? Why are you venting here? Go and submit your comments directly to Apple on their product feedback page:

    You do realize they’re not reading these comments, right? So go there and submit your complaints there.

    I do bet they won’t care, though… :-)

  58. Brian says:

    Apple has lost the plot! Give us the option to downgrade 12.6.2.

  59. Tessa Froggatte says:

    How do you unhide any redownloadable purchased apps in the App Store and how do you downgrade back to iOS 12.6 on a MacBook?

    • devtester says:

      Like I said above, you don’t. There’s NO WAY to unhide an app. You have to call Apple to have THEM do it – or pay for it again. Maybe, maybe just maybe someone in Apple will admit an oops and fix it.

      Just another brilliant move by Apple. That idea about sweating the details died with Steve.

  60. KSL says:


    • Nate says:

      Why? Why would they remove the Tone and App managers? Features used to control and manage the device(s) we PURCHASED. I mean what is the point of removing things that have been features for years? It just makes iTunes even LESS usable. All to save 100 MB. What a complete joke. Tim Cook is the worst thing that EVER happened to Apple. And now they’re selling the new iPhone X for $999. Give me a break.

  61. JOHN A MERRILL says:

    They removed books, too. (The Books app does not let you send a sample to your iPad. iTunes used to let you do this.)

    So if you are on your computer and reading a book review, there is no way to send a sample to your iPad. Please correct me if I am wrong.

    I may go back to Kindle. More compatible with my iPad at the moment.

  62. ac says:

    Apple does not remove the app files left on your mac from the itunes mobile applications folder. This is several GBs that you must remove yourself. Not a Steve Jobs approach.

  63. Ted says:

    I’m glad Apple is removing useless things from iTunes!

    • Nate says:

      Why? Why would you be happy that Apple is removing things that are indeed helpful? Features used to control and manage the device(s) we PURCHASED. I mean what is the point of removing things that have been features for years? It just makes iTunes even LESS usable. All to save 100 MB. What a complete joke. Tim Cook is the worst thing that EVER happened to Apple. And now they’re selling the new iPhone X for $999. Give me a break.

  64. arnold says:

    While complaining here can be cathartic, the real thing to do is to use the “Provide Itunes Feedback” menu option within Itunes and send your thoughts on this change to Apple directly.

  65. louis966 says:

    What will happen if I buy a new iPhone? Will I have to re-download all the applications one by one (I have a few hundreds!), regroup them into folders? Will I lose the chat history of all my chat apps? If this is what apple consider as an improvement, I guess I will finally switch to android phone after 10 years of iPhone use. My main reason why I kept buying iPhone was the restore function of iTunes that could totally restore the new iPhone exactly as a clone of the previous one. What a shame.

  66. BHernandez says:

    Does anybody else also misses iTunes U?

    Yeah, it’s still available through iOS and the Podcasts section but it’s clear not all the content will be available on the Mac (or PC, of course) through iTunes anymore.

    Am I being too paranoid realising you will NEED an iOS device to access that content that was supposed to be “freely available”?

  67. Garth Lahana says:

    This is extremely annoying & I’m not sure if it’s legal here in Europe, as we have the right to have a backup of apps we purchase as far as I know. This renders my backuping of apps useless. I hope someone with more legal knowledge can take a look into this…

    • James Husted says:

      Everything still gets backed up when you backup your phone via iTunes. The Apps get backed up and can be restored via iTunes. You just manage UPDATES from the phone directly.

  68. mike vaughan says:

    Ooops. sorry about duplicate post. Also it seems that I can still get the maps I have already bought through the App. I still think this is not an improvement in any way to iTunes.

  69. mike vaughan says:

    This is really dumb! I have the co-pilot Sat nav app on my phone but to save space I only synced maps when I need them through iTunes. Now I can’t see them, so the App has been rendered useless unless I buy the maps again :-(
    This is really dumb!

  70. mike vaughan says:

    Hilariously, when you connect your iPhone to the wonderful new version of iTunes, space occupied by Apps is shown as free! So although ‘About’ in Settings on the phone shows free space as 4.4 GB, iTunes on the Mac shows 13.84 free! Is this another Apple ‘enhancement’??

    • GrumpGum says:

      I’m starting to think the “i” in the iTunes and iOS stands for “intern” and it’s the projects that fresh interns are assigned to.

      How do they ship so many half-baked products if not for that explanation?

  71. John G says:

    I agree, this is a backwards step. Why can’t Apple give us a desktop/laptop app to manage our iOS devices?

  72. massimo says:

    After the install, all the .ipa files are still in the iTunes folder. Can they be removed? IF there is no synch they are now wasting space, right?

  73. Steve J says:

    This is total bull*.
    Again some smart guys think that everybody is online 24/7 with fiber optic cables. What about people who are in developing countries, in a plane, in a train, in a remote area without internet and still want to manage their apps (say you have a crash).
    What about people with 2 iPads, 2 iPhones and have to update apps that download, say, 1.5Gb? Instead of downloading once, you download it 4 times.
    What about an app that breaks everything? How do you come back to the previous version (it’s pushed into the trash, but you still can recover it on the Mac)???
    Smart guys who actually aren’t smart at all.

    • Ted says:

      Why are you so angry, Steve? Who cares who is or isn’t online 24/7? People survived for centuries without cell phones, Wi-Fi, and iTunes. Get rid of your phone. Believe me, you won’t miss a heartbeat from your own life for not having a cell phone. Just have a home phone, like I do, and people can call you there and leave messages. You’ll get them when you get home. It’s so simple. It doesn’t worth it to be angry because companies want your cash and you simply give it to them.

  74. Mark says:

    Apple stoped being a leading computer manufacturer a long time ago. I’m afraid some people are living and thinking in the past.

    Apple first and foremost is a phone manufacturer, it’s second core business is the retail arm, of selling music and 3rd party apps via iTunes.

    Computers as hardware are now that little sideline they do because they just don’t have the heart to shut it down completely. I know others will argue but if the truth be told Apple want an iOS world not an OSX one.

  75. Bob Golly says:

    This is utterly stupid!!! I backed up my old phone the restored to my new phone only to find all my apps had to be downloaded and installed again. It took 5 hours of waiting. Double dumb Apple!

  76. My journey with Apple started with an Apple II in the days when competitors were still using 5.25″ floppy disks. Over the years I graduated from model to model and experienced both the Claris software debacle and the soft drink whizz-kid’s disastrous licensing of third-party hardware running Apple software. Fortunately, Steve Jobs return to the company seemed to bring about a welcome renewal and sense of purpose and direction.

    Sadly, since the launch of the iPhone, the company seems to have increasingly moved to short term cycles; become even more tight lipped about what it is doing; appears to find client commentary, irrelevant and client service a (un)necessary evil.

    Having been through the seemingly never-ending and stupid Mac v Windows diatribes period and having worked with both from their beginnings, I have no doubt that the Mac OS has always been superior.

    However, whilst I don’t lay claim to either technical IT knowledge, coding skills, nor business acumen, I find it increasingly difficult to understand what Tim Cook and/or other Apple executives are seeking to achieve and whether they, any longer, have any real understanding or concern for Apple computer clients – exactly those afficianados who saw Apple through its darkest days and who have constituted probably the most loyal support group for any product marketed since the Model T Ford.

    Surely, there must be some way to get through to the Apple executive and have some reason applied to this erratic roller coaster of additions and subtractions and re-additions or modifications, ad infinitum.

    If not, I’m sad to say, Apple’s days as a leading computer manufacturer for individuals must surely be numbered.

    • Ted says:

      LOL! People who list their Apple “credentials” since the dinosaur age always amuses me. I’m sure you meant to say “customer” as opposed to “client”, for you are not a “client” of Apple Computer. You are a “customer”. Big difference!

      It seems collecting Apple products over the decades have not thought you the supreme lesson: you only exist to provide companies with your cash. That’s all. They don’t make pretty wallpapers, and icons, and monitors, to impress you. They make them so you BUY them, thereby supplying them with cash. The fact that you no longer can do this, that or the other with the product you’ve purchased, have little to no concern to them.

      This is capitalism, Rog. The purpose of companies is to move the cash from your pocket to their pocket. Doesn’t matter what it takes. That is all. No offense, but that’s the truth.

  77. annoyed says:

    So now iTunes is removing features that we use?

    I guess Apple removing Touch ID and the headphone jack from the iPhone wasn’t enough for a week, they needed to make iTunes even worse too.

    And the MacBook Pro removed the brightness sound function and escape keys…

    Why does Apple remove stuff everyone uses and call that a good thing?

  78. Tom S says:

    I have a very slow internet connection and several IOS devices. Downloading to iTunes at night then distributing to the devices is a great solution for me. Any network errors, etc. would not disrupt or break an app.
    Now, if there are network errors during download to IOS device, will the old version of the app still be usable?
    Will I have to make a trip to a WiFi hotspot somewhere in town to do IOS updates?

    • Ted says:

      Sorry Tom, but it is your fault that you have a slow internet connection. As a matter of fact, as far as they’re concerned, it’s your fault for being born. Apple’s only concern is making cash so they can build space campuses. Your sole responsibility is to purchase Apple products, thereby supporting them with cash.

      • Matthew Bartlett says:

        Heaven forbid he be part of the 40% of America without the fastest levels of broadband available! I guess it’s his fault that companies haven’t gotten 100% coverage of the nation? Or that he doesn’t uproot his life and move just for that?!
        Inane to blame HIM for that.

        The change is an odd one, and it will disrupt a lot of peoples’ common uses. It’s not any of their faults- it just is what it is.

  79. Aplmac says:

    From a practical perspective, you no longer have the capability to layout or arrange your apps on your iDevice on ‘the big screen’ of your Mac – you now have to do it by click and drag/drop on your iDevice screen, which is not helpful if you have a lot of apps to arrange.

    Best advice: tidy up your iDevice before upgrading to iTunes 12.7.

  80. Bill says:

    You can’t hide apps anymore or can you?

    This was useful, take as an example. I have an app for Nikon manuals, which is very useful when out and about, but now I can see the old app for the manuals again and it is telling me I can download it from the cloud again, but if I do, it wont work as the apps too old, hiding it was a better option it help stop confusion!

    Like many other apps now and in the future i.e. when we still all have 32bit apps that wont work and still show up as purchased along side our 64bit versions, cluttering up everything.

    Apple haven’t thought this through, we need to hide older apps that we no long want or need to use again!!

    As for the ring tones, the ones I have made are in sounds, but how will I make new ones and upload them to my iPhone, it there an app for that?

    Again Apple, get someone at Cupertino to put their thinking caps on!

    • devtester says:

      Yes you can hide apps in the iOS APP store. Unfortunately, once you do, you cannot get them back. No “unhide” capability. That’s the app management problem that Apple seems to have overlooked. I would guess its one team at Apple who didn’t think about the consequences of what they were doing. Sadly, there’s a lot more of that happening these days. It doesn’t “just work” anymore.

      As for ring tones, yes you can make your own. Ringer is one app that works quite well. You can then drag the tone into the “tones” on your iPhone. That works fine, I’ve done that.

      Sure hope someone at Apple figures out the Apps management oops and fixes it.

  81. Dave Nathanson says:

    Some iOS apps store a lot of data apparently in the app. If you are downloading or re-downloading an app it will not have your data. So in this new world, how do you back up your app data?

    • BHernandez says:


      And you have to download the same app on all the iGadgets you have in your household and “manage” them on the devices. Atrocious.

      As I mentioned above, I’m restoring my Mac from a pre-iTunes 12.7 Time Machine backup, but I guess I can run but cannot hide…

  82. Dave Nathanson says:

    One important reason to sync Apps from Mac to iOS device was to revert to an older version when a new version was crashy & unusable. It sounds like that will no longer be possible. :-(

    Occasionally an old app is removed from the App store and no replacement is available. Being able to sync the app you bought from the App store, back into your iOS device means that it is OK to delete any app because you could always load it back in (even if not available in App store). Sounds like that feature is gone too? Can anyone confirm?

    How can you get a full 100% backup of your iOS device if you can’t sync apps to/from the iOS device? Is there an alternate Mac app that can do that?

    Is there any way to load your copy of an App purchased from the app store, back into your iOS device without iTunes?

    • Mirek says:

      … you still can. Using XCode (just tested – but I have a dev account). It seems, that new iTunes didn’t remove backed up applications.

  83. Ahovis says:

    So when I restore my backup to my new iPhone 8, will the 249 apps I have installed on my current iPhone 6S be installed? If not, this is a very bad move for people with lots of apps.

    • Ian T says:

      If you need to restore or get a new iPhone, you can still get all your apps and everything else from your iCloud backup (assuming you have one – you should!), and everything but your apps via iTunes.
      Otherwise, it means re-downloading all you apps again via the iOS App Store.
      The problem is that “old” or “no longer supported” apps will be lost for good even if they still work fine. Up till now, you could every app you ever bought on iTunes.

      • Mark says:

        I never used iCloud backup because iTunes says iCloud backups are “only the most important data from your iphone”. I’d prefer to do a “FULL” backup to my computer. I just Googled “Do icloud backups include apps?” and the results seem to say NO.

        • Risi says:

          iCloud backups do include Apps. Most Apps. In fact, if you’re missing an App, it probably got deleted from iTunes before it got deleted from your phone. Does it save the information from that App? Depends on what the App permissions are with iOS. For example, you can backup WhatsApp conversations in iCloud. Along with that, you can actually go into your iCloud settings and select which Apps you’d like to be in the backup.

          Nowadays, App companies are offering to backup customer data to their encrypted private servers a la Snapchat, or giving customers options to go with another cloud server like Microsoft OneDrive, Dropbox or Google Drive. So, for the latter, all you have to do is sign in, which depending on App permissions iCloud can do for you, and your information will begin to sync.

          Now if there’s still stuff you’d like to have saved for you, like Apple Pay settings, TouchID settings, content dragged into iTunes or iBooks, PhotoStream (which is currently obsolete anyway), Activity, Health, and Keychain data, THEN you should always stick with an iTunes backup. But for a lot of the population, since smartphones seem to be replacing computers, that isn’t an option. You also won’t believe the incompatibility issues PC/iPhone users have with iTunes. iCloud never needs an update on your behalf, and with the way the tech trend is going, everything will have a cloud-based counterpart that the tech company favours for its users within the next few years.

          By all means, do what works for you. I know of a Music studio that hasn’t updated it’s computers in 10 years due to the fact that if they update, their analog equipment can be damaged in the process, and cost them millions of dollars. It’s just not worth it.

          Now having both is the best idea, because if your main computer fails, and no longer has access to that backup, whether it was deleted or corrupted, you may lose a lot of your phone info too.

          This article shows what exactly gets put in either backup, HOWEVER, this is from the days of iOS 9, which this past January (2017) has dropped to 18% of users, and is predominantly on older “end-of-life” tech that cannot be updated to the newer iOS. This trend will definitely continue into iOS11, and probably split that percentage in two, and remain on the last little bits of tech that cannot support the newer iOS.

          iOS 11 will also have a new feature that will allow users to transfer over that important information DIRECTLY from iPhone to iPhone, greatly reducing the need for an iTunes backup.

          I hope this gives you some more insight, and I hope it doesn’t come off as rude. I’ve lost a lot of info from the last few phones I had, simply because I decided that I would skip out on a cloud-based backup.

  84. JustCause says:

    Hate this!!!! Will not be upgrading seeing as iOS 11 is probably tied to iTunes 12.7. They need to release an app for managing iPhone apps, ringtones…

    • ManoaHi says:

      iOS 11 will still sync with iTunes 12.6.2. Not sure why Apple did this. I’m wondering if enough people complain in the feedback. To revert to iTunes 12.6.2 please see above post.

      • zoko says:

        I have been searching why I cannot see the app tabs for hours till I find this article. Restricting tones and apps customization suc ks!
        The worst the ios11 does not even add new tones, we are all fed up with default tones. They want us to buy tones and not to do our own tones.
        Make me thinking of android after so many years of iPhone

        • stanley says:

          I was the same . I was like what happen to the apps tabs . Why is all my application stored inside place is gone . It took me hours to find this page . Guess we are the same I am not much of IT tech guy who buys iphone tones and applications

    • ManoaHi says:

      iOS 11 will still sync with iTunes 12.6.2.

  85. devtester says:

    You can load ringtones by dragging them into iTunes. They will load to the phone.

    However, I can’t see a way with iOS 11 GM to unhide hidden apps now that iTunes no longer handles apps. Music and videos are fine, but Apps management is missing.

  86. Alex says:

    What about file sync via iTunes? Do we have to wait for iOS 11?

    • Sheryl says:

      iTunes does still allow for file syncing. It replaced the Applications tab with a Files tab, which recognizes file-syncing applications on the iPhone or iPad and allows filing syncing as it did before. However, application maintenance — such as installing, uninstalling, updating, and organizing — is now gone from iTunes.

      • Alex says:

        Thank you, Sheryl!

      • BHernandez says:

        Which defeats, in my case, the whole purpose of using my Mac as the digital hub for my home. Now I’ll have to download not only apps but media, several times to sync it across all my household gadgets. Serious bandwidth hog and cumbersome.

        My only hope is if Apple would put those features in MacOS Server but I guess is only wishful thinking.

  87. Alex says:

    Ironically, Apple states that the new iTunes focuses on music, dropping ringtones from being synced.

    So, for Apple, ringtones are not music until you buy them from the store.

    Well, goodbye custom ringtones and, of course, goodbye ringtones at all.

    • Risi says:

      Well, finding ringtones on the iTunes app on an iOS device is like pulling teeth already. Plus, I don’t remember the last time I didn’t have my phone on vibrate. Paying for ringtones would be a waste of money, since you can effectively make your own using Garageband (which is free, and you can use any song you buy through iTunes, so you’re only paying once).

      If they remove that feature, to be honest, still no biggie. Haven’t used that feature in over 3 years. For the small percentage of people that this affects, it sucks, but updates are for entire user experience, not for a few people who don’t like new features, or want to keep something around that developers already stopped wasting their time and money on.

      And in any case, there’s always an App for that.

  88. Funkright says:

    Can you still load your own ringtones or has that ability been removed too?

    • avenged110 says:

      As far as I could tell from Apple’s support doc, you can drag custom ringtones to the device to add them. True syncing is gone, but they can still be added manually. That said, I use iTunes 11 so I can’t actually test it myself.

      • DarylS799 says:

        I did the update before I knew we are losing things. Anyone know how to revert to last older version? I hate with APPLE takes things away because they want more control of OUR phones and computers. I have been an APPLE user since 1984 but I swear I am going Android if they keep this doing this kind of crap.

        • BHernandez says:

          I’m restoring my Mac from a Time Machine backup just to do that…

          Thought exactly the same about Android, if it wasn’t because there’s no real equivalent to iTunes database for music stats.

          • Brian Lev says:

            BEFORE anyone reverts to an older version of iTunes, make sure you have a backup version of your older .itl file (the library) or it will not be readable by the older version of iTunes…!

        • Bill says:

          go here:

          they have all the old versions of iTunes for download … had to do that myself.

          • iTunesWhereArtThou says:

            You can download iTunes 12.6.2 directly from the Apple CDN here:


            Or you can restore iTunes from a Time Machine backup to downgrade.

            But I suspect Apple will make the iOS 11 final only compatible with iTunes 12.7? We will see, maybe iOS 11.1 or 11.2?

          • DarylS799 says:

            OK so I downloaded the previous version but OS won’t let me delete the newer iTunes. How do I get the older one installed with the newer one in place or how do I delete the newer version? HELP PLEASE

          • Mark says:

            It seems to me that reverting back doesn’t really solve the problem… it only delays the pain for a while. Are those who revert just going to NEVER update iTunes again?? Any future updates will screw you again. I think I see a bigger problem than not seeing my Apps showing in iTunes… If iTunes isn’t managing apps anymore, than phones are likely not reporting apps to iTunes. So…… what will happen when you go to do an iPhone Restore, or if you get a new phone? You’ll not get all your apps synched to the new phone!! That’s a HUGE issue… redownloading tons of apps individually?!

        • ManoaHi says:

          If you’re on a Mac, hopefully you don’t use an administrator login as your regular account (same is true for Windows – the process below is more involved in Windows) Never use an administrator account as your regular account, it has elevated permissions. That said, heed now if not already doing so. Here’s how to revert:
          1. quit iTunes
          2. login as an administrator
          3. download iTunes 12.6.2
          4. go to Activity Monitor (Applications–>Utilities–>Activity Monitor
          5. click on Memory
          6. in the search box search for iTunes
          7. however many show up (you can only select one at a time), select each one, one by one, and click on the “X” near the upper left hand corner, you should get a dialogue box.
          8. open up a terminal session
          9. run this: sudo rm -rf /Applications/
          10. enter in your administrator password
          11. after it completes, install iTunes 12.6.2
          12. log off administrator and login to your regular account
          13. locate your Music folder and expand to find your iTunes folder
          14. remove or move the “iTunes Library.itl” file.
          15. in the Previous iTunes Libraries folder find a previous one, look at the date.
          16. using Finder duplicate (this is a safety measure, in case you have to do it again)
          17. move the duplicate to the iTunes directory
          18. rename the duplicate to “iTunes Library.itl”
          19. now you’re done. Launch iTunes, you should be back in iTunes 12.6.2.

          Remember, I don’t know how to stress this, but I’ll repeat again, never use an administrator login as your regular login. Anyway, turn off autoupdate otherwise it will go back to 12.7 again. Get any updates to Apps in iTunes, you’ll have to enter in your Apple id’s password a number of times. I’d suggest you open text editor and type your password. Copy it, because you’ll have to enter in a number of times, if you haven’t kept up the updates to Apps, you could be hundreds behind. But after about 25 times entering your Apple ID password, it will start downloading your apps.

          • Teflon says:

            You are a star. I reverted to iTunes 12.6.2 easily following your step-by-step process. Thank you for taking the time to document this method.

          • Stephanie says:

            You lost me at action 8. I can’t find terminal session. So where do I look please? I’m not very tech savvy so help is needed.
            To say I’m ticked off with Apple is an understatement. Why on earth can’t they just use the computer app store instead of iTunes for our phones and other device? Or is that too easy?
            Will I buy more Apple devices now? The short answer is NO. Unfortunately I can’t afford to change my ageing iMac or my other stuff.

        • Nick says:

          Totally agree with you mate. If Steve was still alive he would sack all these muppets that call themselves Apple Software Developers as they are crap. I’ve not upgraded my iphone 6 as I will go to android after this. Tired of Apple BS.

        • Harlem says:

          The laptop to which I synced my iPhone has been busted since around July. New phone needs to be synced. Apple: whaddya mean it has to do it through the cloud! All updates have been on the phone, but the new one needs the data from the computer. Arrrrgh!

          This is so Revenge of the Nerds. It’s overkill.

    • Mav says:

      Agreed – I am to Apple support as we speak. There is now no way to browse and review apps on a Desktop without iTunes. I am looking for a few apps and am simply NOT prepared to spend hours browsing on a bloody iPhone screen to find what I want.

      Even the links on the iTunes site for apps – now tries to open up iTunes on your PC and surprise surprise shoves Apple Music in your face if you have the latest version grrrr.

      So I’ve just come off the phone from Apple Support. They have said you can uninstall the latest version of iTunes that is missing the App Store (as this is the only one that has the App Store removed), then go here and pick the version you want:

      I hope this helps others!

    • So what happens with back ups and if you purchase a new phone & want to update it with your previous stuff – what happens to your apps then?

      Always had it drummed into us – back up to itunes – now what?

    • PMH says:

      I wish developers would talk to actual users (all types and tech-savvy levels) before removing certain features. Being able to manipulate/organize apps via a computer is far easier and better than trying to do it via the iPhone. PLEASE get this feature back! I agree with a user below, it may be time to consider switching my phone.

      • Will says:

        Hey I feel your pain. Don’t blame it on the developers though. These types of decisions are made by management and executives above. If Steve Jobs were around, I am sure he would have never approved it. I think it was a poor decision by apple to remove the app store from Itunes. Sorry, I just can’t stand browsing for apps on my iphone, and would rather do it on my mac laptop. Since I can’t do it on my laptop anymore, I am less likely to want to browse for apps, and also less likely to even use the app store at all.

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