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iTunes 9iTunes 9 was just given its public outing by Steve Jobs at Apple’s September event, marking a massive upgrade to the music management application, and injecting a ton of new features for iPod owners everywhere.


Apple has added a new feature dubbed Genius Mixes, letting iTunes pull together songs that naturally fit together. In the words of Steve Jobs: “Imagine a Genius DJ that plays endless mixes of songs from your iTunes library that go great together.”

Jobs also showed off improved synching, giving more granular control over the content that’s shovelled onto an iPod or iPhone. Individual artists can be selected, as can individual movies. If you’re using a Mac, you can even choose which photos are copied over, using face detection technology from iPhoto.

There’s also iPod touch and iPhone Homescreen management, so you can re-arrange apps on the desktop, before syncing the layout to your portable device.

New home sharing are in iTunes 9 too, and for the first time Apple’s letting you copy content from other computers running iTunes on the same network. This isn’t streaming over the network, as iTunes has always included, but hard copies so music is still available when other computers are switched off.

The iTunes store has also been redesigned, with cleaner layouts and refined navigation. But finally, there’s a new audio format called iTunes LP.

Previously known under the codename Cocktail, this is Apple’s attempt to revive the luxury of owning a physical album. It’s a rich multimedia experience, with menus (not unlike DVDs) and extras such as liner notes, photos and videos.

It’s like a virtual gatefold album, and another reason (Apple hopes) to buy music through the iTunes store. Stay tuned for a closer look at iTunes LP in the next few minutes.

Out now | £Free | Apple

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