After the Apple product announcements on September 12th, a new version of iTunes appeared. With the iTunes 12.7 release, users will no longer be able to make purchases in macOS to sync back to their device or use iTunes to manage app content, including icon management. The App Store is gone as well as iTunes U and Internet Radio, and iTunes for Windows users will no longer be able to manage books in iOS. For many who have set up auto update, their first notification of this unexpected change came in the form of this warning the first time they opened iTunes:
So, what does this all mean?
Apps and ringtones will be managed on your iOS device. Apple’s upcoming iOS 11 release on September 19th will allow you to redownload any ringtones you previously purchased and manage them directly on your device.
iTunes U content has been moved to the Podcasts section of iTunes and Internet Radio may be found in the music library sidebar. Click on Music to edit the list to show or hide Internet Radio.
Windows users will have to manage their books in iBooks for iOS. In Apple’s own words: “Books on iTunes for Windows are managed in iBooks for iOS”.
You will still be able to manage music, movies and TV shows, podcasts and audiobooks and the ability to share files (documents, presentations, etc) between supported iOS apps (such as GoodReader app) and your computer. File transfers and syncing can still be accomplished when the iOS device is connected. When you click the device icon below the playback bar, you will see File Sharing in the navigation list on the left, file sharing apps list to its’ right and documents to the right of that. So basically, although app syncing is gone, file transfers can still be done.
What this change will mean for users who backup using iTunes, is that if and when you need to restore to an iPhone or iPad, apps will not be transferred from your Mac. You will need to [re]download apps to your iOS device over the internet. This update will probably affect many users with modest internet connections or low bandwidths caps, so depending on how many apps you have on your device, you might want to consider accessing a good WIFI connection.
Apple support for managing apps and other content
iOS apps, ringtones, and books (PC only) that you have already downloaded can be found in your iTunes Media folder.
If you have an iOS app, ringtone, or book that’s no longer available for redownload, you can move that content to your iOS device while connected to your computer.
Some of your apps may become inoperable with iOS 11
Apple’s iOS 10.3 update includes a tool to help users identify 32-bit apps. Why is this important? Because they will likely become inoperable with the upcoming iOS 11.
This tool can be found in Settings > General > About and then scroll down to Applications. Tap Applications and you will be taken to the app compatibility page. If you see any apps listed here, it means they have not been updated with 64-bit support by the software developer. However, if you tap Applications and you see no apps listed, it means they are all up-to-date.
You can find a list of nearly 200,000 incompatible apps compiled bySensorTower. If you have any apps on this list that you really need for work, or just love to use, contact the developer and encourage them to update their app with 64-bit support. And remember. Most software developers do not charge a lot for their apps, so if you have apps that you love to use, you should be willing to support their efforts.