Apple Releases iTunes 12.7; Bringing a Revamp that Drops the App Store and Ringtones

Member of the AppleVis Editorial Team

After all of the leaks leaving Apple with little to surprise us with at yesterday's iPhone, Apple Watch and Apple TV launch event, the company did manage to fit one surprise in to the day, and that was the release of a significantly revamped iTunes application.

According to Apple's release notes, the new iTunes:

... focuses on music, movies, TV shows, podcasts, and audiobooks. Apps for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch are now exclusively available in the new App Store for iOS. And the new App Store makes it easy to get, update, and redownload apps—all without a Mac or PC.

The result is that the App Store and ringtones section have been entirely removed, whilst Internet Radio is now part of Music, and iTunes U has been moved into Podcasts.

The following changes are included in the new iTunes:

  • 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.

For those wondering how they will now transfer custom ringtones to their iPhone, Apple has updated the information on its support page for using ringtones:

If you have a ringtone or tone in iTunes on your Mac or PC that you want to move to your iOS device, you can manually add it to your device using iTunes.

  1. Connect your device to your computer.
  2. Open iTunes. Make sure that you have the latest version.
  3. On your computer, find the ringtone or tone that you want to add to your device. If the ringtone or tone previously appeared in your iTunes library, you can find it in the Tones folder of your iTunes media folder.
  4. Drag the item from your computer to your iOS device in the left sidebar of iTunes.

At the time of posting, we have not yet had an opportunity to fully explore this release for anyVoiceOver-specific improvements, changes or regressions. We will update this post if we learn of any. In the meantime, please let us know in the comments of any changes that you find in your own testing.

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Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Wednesday, September 13, 2017

What about those tones that we got from IE or we created?

Submitted by mendi on Wednesday, September 13, 2017

The better question, how can one transfer a ringtone to iOS using the windows version of iTunes? Guess I'll either be without ringtones, (probably not), or I'll be praying a third party app like iRinger catches up and does the transfer like I'm used to and puts it in the new iOS section, that apparently we're required to drag it to at this point.

Submitted by Ekaj on Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Well, surprisingly I actually got this update on time. Lol perhaps this is a sign for things to come. I was doing other stuff on my Mac when I was prompted to install the update. So I went and did so, and as far as I can tell iTunes still works well with VO. I've not seen anything yet from iTunes U, but perhaps that's because I have never gotten anything from there. It'll be interesting to check out that content though.

Submitted by Missy Hoppe on Thursday, September 14, 2017

Like others have said, I am hoping there will be a way to add/remove ringtones from my phone now that this is no longer handled by iTunes. Honestly, the fact that iTunes no longer does apps doesn't bother me in the slightest; that's the way it always should have been, IMHO, but ring tones? Those are part of the iTunes store in iOS, so why have they been removed from iTunes? I guess it won't be an issue unless or until I get a new device, but as someone who enjoys making custom ring tones, this is somewhat disappointing. Maybe they'll add back in the ringtone functionality at some point, but as I said, the fact that iTunes no longer handles apps is perfectly fine with me.

Submitted by HarmonicaPlayer on Thursday, September 14, 2017

greetings i read in a tweet for all windows users who make ringtones you can do the following:)
1. take the m4r file you made and copy it to clipboard,
2. make sure your device is plugged into computer.
3. make sure itunes is launched and then go to your device and it will say name of device button
next, press the corresponding button and tab to device sidebar.
finally, look for the tones section and tab till you find the list of tones on device and paste file you copied to clipboard.
if you want to back up your tones copy all files found in tones section and paste them on an external drive as copies.
hope this helps:)

Submitted by JeffB on Thursday, September 14, 2017

This sounds offel and a huge step backwards. I don't know why they would do this... UGH!

Submitted by kool_turk on Friday, September 15, 2017

Transfering ringtones is still doable.

It's like the post above said, you just need to make sure it's an m4r file.

I've always transfered ringtones this way.

If you don't want to use iTunes to transfer ringtones, there is always appandora, but that thing isn't easy to use.

I use that to get ringtones onto other peoples iPhones.

You still need to have iTunes installed for that program to work though.

Submitted by Pa. Joe on Friday, September 15, 2017

How can I listen to internet radio on iTunes? I can't find an option for it in any of the menus. There is the option to open an url.
thanks folks, and happy Friday.

Submitted by mendi on Friday, September 15, 2017

Glad I will not be losing my custom ringtones after all! Now, to figure out where in the world iRinger puts them, because admittedly I let it do the conversion/heavy lifting, and, at the time, it imported them to iTunes so long as I had the right library open. Still though, if I can hunt down the M4R files, I am still in business! :)

Submitted by sockhopsinger on Friday, September 15, 2017

Pa. Joe. Make sure that the library button in iTunes is selected, then go to edit. There are check boxes that will display what items are shown in the iTunes library (example, artists, songs, playlists, composers, etc). Make sure internet radio is selected. Then, select "done". Go over the list that shows song, artist, etc. and either scroll down to internet radio or start typing internet radio. Once it is highlighted, you use it the same as before. Hope this helps.

Submitted by Shannon on Friday, September 22, 2017

It may be confusing at first, since you can’t just visit the Tones section and manually synchronise or delete specific ringtones. However, it’s really pretty simple to add custom ringtones to your iPhone. All you have to do is drag and drop your files onto the On My Device section within iTunes’ view of your iPhone. The software does the rest of the work, copying the file to your device and making it available for you to use.



Submitted by Megan on Wednesday, September 27, 2017

So, I've got a dumb question then, how do you transfer apps from an old phone to a new one then? I know there's iCloud, but I haven't purchased extra space and so in the past just used iTunes on my PC to transfer apps from my old phone to my new one. But if you can't transfer apps with iTunes anymore, when I get my new phone, whatever I end up deciding on, how do I transfer my stuff from my 6 Plus onto it? Will I have to redownload each app from the store, or is there a simple way? I hope. :)

Submitted by Megan on Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Heh, or am I misunderstanding and its just you can't purchase apps with iTunes anymore but can still back them up? That'd make more sense, come to think of it. :)

Submitted by Justin on Wednesday, September 27, 2017

I believe you can still back up your apps to iTunes, but I am not 100% sure on this. I would do a search in google to see what you come up with. Maybe a site like apple insider will tell you.

Submitted by sockhopsinger on Wednesday, September 27, 2017

One thing that I remember is that the older version of the app store under the Updates tab had a button that said something like "all apps". You could go under there to view every app you had purchased under your AppleID. That may be a way to go if you wish to re-download apps. Again, that is contingent on them still having the button.

Submitted by Justin on Wednesday, September 27, 2017

There's a purchased button under the my account section of the app store. Once in purchased, i think there's still a not on this iPhone button, but i'm not sure on that.

Submitted by sockhopsinger on Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Thanks @Justin. That is what it was called. Under purchased it should have a list of all of your apps.

Submitted by Megan on Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Thanks so much guys! I oddly never paid any attention to that purchased button. Very cool. Thanks again!

Submitted by jeff W on Monday, October 2, 2017

So, I have a tone on my phone. How can I now delete it from my phone and have it on my computer? And dumb question, but with VO how do I do that drag and drop thing? Help!!!!!

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