Chris Alexander

On Engineering

iTunes Sucks

3rd March, 2012

iTunes is the worst piece of software ever written (yes, worse than Windows ME).

It is slow. It is ugly. It is not fit for purpose. It makes it incomprehensibly complicated to anything other than the simplest possible action. It takes forever to start, forever to sync, forever to do anything.

I think the main problem is that iTunes was designed to be a music player. Over the years, the iTunes store, iPod syncing, iPad syncing, podcasts, books (Books?! In iTunes?!) apps, Genius, a social network (remember Ping? No, nobody else either), and various other things that should never have existed in a media player have been bolted on and it’s become a bloated steaming pile of shit.

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If I copy a CD to my computer (as I do a lot, as I like buying CDs rather than digital downloads - but that’s another blog post entirely), to get it on my phone (Galaxy Nexus, ICS) I do the following:

This is due to the wonder that is Google Music. Its uploader sits in the background on my PC, uploads it to the server, and as soon as it’s there it’s available to play on my phone straight away (or press the “Save for offline” button for use on a plane etc.).

To get it on to my iPad / iPod:

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This is very very broken. Something needs to be done about it.

While I admire Apple’s hardware, their software has always been absolutely terrible. Quicktime - I need say no more. OS X is basically unusable. iTunes isn’t fit for purpose. iOS is so slow it seems like it’s running on a steam engine.