Monday 3 December 2012

disappointment with iTunes 11

I'd like to give some link love to Joe of eMac Consulting.

His procedure for 'upgrading' iTunes 11 back to 10 worked perfectly for me

I've been open about the fact that I enjoy using Snow Leopard for my day-to-day work. I do think it is the height of Apple's powers and I don't like the general direction since Lion.

After reading about iTunes 11 I couldn't resist getting hold of the shiny new interface.

I think the lack of coverflow was the last straw, but before I realised that I'd started to feel disappointed with the interface.

I'm prepared to accept that this may be a reluctance to adopt change, but for the record here are a few things that baffled me:
  • Your music list is data - why not be able to change the way you view that data (list, album list, grid or coverflow) easily with buttons at the top of the window, consistent with Finder?
  • The box at the top was a good analogy for an LCD display. OK, it no longer has the LCD look (what is it meant to look like now?) but it just doesn't seem right to have controls in there (eg the shuffle button)
  • The play, next and previous buttons no longer look like physical buttons - there's nothing to tell you that they're 'pressable'. I can't see any reason for this change other than 'for the sake of it' but whatever the reason, why still have the volume slider looking 3D physical thing?
I've fallen back in love with iT10 and that's a lesson learned about trying these new things out on my Mountain Lion machine (or rather partition) before making 'difficult-to-reverse' changes here on my lovely Snow Leopard.


  1. As a consultant I need to be an early adopter. At times I have to bleed some to learn some.

    Thanks for the shout out.

    Maybe we've both learned a lesson. Well ... in my case probably not. ;)


  2. I'm in a similar boat - for testing my software I have to have an installation of the latest OSX (Apple keep breaking my software with their new releases lol - no good having people report bugs and not be able to test.) I keep older machines as well for the same reason. But I use 10.6 for almost everything including developing.

    Logical thing would have been to try the new iTunes on a different machine first. I really didn't expect it to be so radically different and with features hidden or missing.

    Maybe you're right - an app update can be alluring!

  3. I lot of good UI points there Shiela,.. I learnt a lot about good UI design from Apple. Have they now abandoned this because it's SO Steve Jobs? (It was always about the user experience - find a way to modernise and keep it easy to use!!)

    Now I can understand the witch hunt against skeuomorphic design, but they need to retain some flavour of it in order that we know instinctively how to use the software. Buttons are buttons, and we know they're for clicking.

  4. I've just checked and Apple's OSX human interface guidelines still say "You are strongly encouraged to use the standard Aqua controls in your app." I'm not sure how they justify the controls on the new iTunes or the look of the new Address Book / iCal but I suspect they're referring to the newer iOS HIG which says nothing about standard controls but seems to be bigger on metaphors. Part of convergence maybe.