Buying and listening to music on multiple devices
Ask iLounge offers readers the opportunity to get answers to their iPod-, iPhone-, iPad-, iTunes-, or Apple TV-related questions from a member of the iLounge editorial team. We'll answer several questions here each week, and of course, you can always get help with more immediate concerns from the iLounge Discussion Forums. Submit your questions for consideration using our Ask iLounge Submit Form. We reserve the right to edit questions for grammar, spelling, and length.
Q: I have an iPhone, an iPod touch and an iPad. I have bought music on all three. iTunes will not let me listen to music on a device unless I bought it on that device. I thought the newest version of iTunes (10.4) would allow that. Anybody figured this out?
A: Normally, music purchased on one iOS device is transferred back to iTunes where it can be synced to other devices. This is not a new feature of iTunes 10.4 but has actually been the case since the iPhone and iPod touch began supporting on-device purchasing back in 2008. In order for this to work, however, your computer must be authorized for the same iTunes Store account used to purchase the content. Unless you’ve never purchased anything from the iTunes Store directly in iTunes, your computer should already be authorized, but you can manually authorize it by selecting Authorize Computer from the Store menu in iTunes and entering your iTunes Store Apple ID and password.
Note that for purchased content to automatically transfer to your other devices you must also be using automatic synchronization with iTunes and the new content must appear in a playlist selected for synchronization to those devices. If you are not using automatic sync, then the new tracks will appear in your iTunes library but will need to be manually copied to your other iOS devices.
A much more recent feature, “iTunes in the Cloud” allows music purchased on one device to be automatically downloaded to other devices, however this feature requires iOS 4.3 or later on all of your devices and is only available to U.S. iTunes Store users. This feature is not enabled by default and you will need to turn it on under the “Store” section in your iOS Settings app:
A similar option can be found on the “Store” panel in your Preferences in iTunes 10.3 or later, allowing apps, books and music purchased on any of your iOS devices to also be automatically downloaded to iTunes without requiring you to specifically sync your device.
- Will removing a credit card from Safari also remove it from Apple Pay?
- Can I mute Handoff calls coming into my Mac from my iPhone?
- How do I keep my iPhone calls from ringing on my Mac?
- Why doesn’t Traffic show up on my Today Notifications Screen?
- Why doesn’t my iPhone reconnect to Wi-Fi after I turn it on?
- Why can’t I see the iPad-style landscape view on my iPhone 6 Plus?
- Apple releases iOS 9.3 beta 3, tvOS 9.2 beta 3, watchOS 2.2 beta 3 to developers
- Indie game ‘The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth’ rejected by Apple over violence toward children
- Apple likely to receive approval to open retail stores in India
- Study finds Apple Watch is best fitness tracker for privacy, security
- Conflicting reports over pink color to be featured in iPhone 5se
- Report: Some third-party repairs ‘bricking’ iPhones with iOS 9
- Report: Apple to bid on NFL Thursday Night Football streaming rights
- Apple to begin taking broken iPhones for trade-in, offer in-store screen protector installation
- Apple ordered to pay $625M to VirnetX in patent case
- Apple Pay reaches 2 million retail locations
- Gumdrop Cases DropTech Case for iPad Pro
- Edifier MP700 Rave Portable Bluetooth Speaker
- Just Mobile HoverDock for Apple Watch + HoverDock for iPhone
- VRS Design Dandy Layered Case for iPad Pro
- Just Mobile TENC for iPad Pro
- Native Union DOCK Lightning
- Native Union DOCK for Apple Watch
- Hitcase Pro+ Action Pack and Snap for iPhone 6/6s
- Urban Armor Gear Trooper for iPhone 6/6s
- NEBO CaseBrite for iPhone 6 Plus/6s Plus
- Inside the betas: What’s new in iOS 9.3 and tvOS 9.2 (Updated)
- Life with HomeKit: Our experiences with Apple’s home automation system
- Under the Radar: 10 ‘hidden’ details about the new Apple TV
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 9.0
- Under the Radar: A closer look at smaller iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus changes
- A First Look at iOS 9’s Transit in Apple Maps (Updated for watchOS 2)
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iTunes 12.2
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 8.4 + Apple Music
- CE Week 2015: IK Multimedia, Monowear’s Apple Watch bands + More
- Live From CE Week 2015: Brand New iPad, iPhone + Mac Accessories!