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iTunes 9 Adds Genius Mixes

Making his return to the stage of a live event for Apple for the first time in a year, Apple CEO Steve Jobs unveiled iTunes 9, available for download for Mac OS X and Windows today.

Genius Mixes

Genius Mixes were the first major feature Jobs announced. With more than 27 million libra

ries built from more than 54 billion songs submitted and analyzed, the software is now ready to create Genius Mixes, which Jobs likened to having a personal DJ at a radio station catering just to your taste.

Genius Mixes goes beyond music, however. Movies can also be categorized using the new technology, and the same goes to apps installed on the iPod or iPod touch.

A new tab feature iTunes lets users arrange applications, complete with a preview of how your iPhone's home screen will appear.

Home Sharing brings iTunes synchronization to a home level. Up to now, it hasn't been easy to synchronize iTunes between multiple computers without the use of scripts or third-party applications. Now up to five authorized computers in your house can copy songs, movies, and TV shows between them. You can see each of the computers operating as part of that shared group, stream each others' contents and drag and drop content from one library to another.

iTunes Store improvements

Users' interaction with the iTunes Store has been dramatically improved, with new artist pages, better navigation, new movies pages and new TV pages. The artist pages have gotten a dramatic overhaul, with much more visual material added. Music, photography, liner notes and essays are the centerpiece of the new feature, which Apple calls iTunes LP.

The iTunes LP metaphor has also been extended to movies and videos; a new "iTunes Extra" area lets you view extra content, like that which is included on DVD and Blu-ray Discs.

Application management

iPhone and iPod touch application management has become a nightmare particularly for those who have large numbers of apps downloaded. Apple's solution to this problem is to leave it to you to manage in iTunes on the computer.

A new interface lets you list your iPhone's home screen, rearrange the location of applications, search for apps and more.

We'll have more details later.

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