Developed by Apple, iTunes is the default media player used by Apple devices. But did you know that iTunes is more than just a media player?
It’s a fact! Apple iTunes also functions as a media library, mobile device management utility, internet radio broadcaster, and client app of the iTunes Store. It’s the easiest way to keep you entertained as it allows you to enjoy movies, music, and TV shows in one place while keeping your digital library organized. With this software, you can rent or buy movies and download your favorite TV shows to your PC. It gives you an all-access pass to the world of digital entertainment.
Apple is known to offer regular updates to its iTunes software, and these updates are available across all compatible devices. Often, many people merely use this software but don’t update it when prompted. While you may think that you don’t need to update iTunes, it’s important to realize that updating an app is the only way to avoid bugs and get access to new features. So, if you use iTunes on your Mac or Windows PC, you should mandatorily update to its latest version.
Through this post, we will familiarize you with a few key aspects related to the latest iTunes versions.
What is the Latest Version of iTunes?
The last major iTunes update was released on October 16, 2014, when Apple Inc. released iTunes 12. However, it doesn’t mean the company has been running legacy software. Since 2014, Apple has released around 60 incremental updates to iTunes 12, the latest version being 18.104.22.168, which was released on November 17, 2020.
Let’s take a look at the features of iTunes 12.
New Features of iTunes 12
iTunes 12 is an application compatible with 64-bit architecture that apart from Apple devices, works with systems having Windows 10, 8.1, 8, and 7. Though build updates keep fixing internal bugs, the major iTunes 12 update includes the following features:
- iTunes 11 had a drop-down menu/left-hand column depending on the view you used. That has changed and now you get a line of icons for movies, music, audio-books, TV, and apps on the navigation bar.
- The menu has been expanded and you can see several new options like Podcasts, iTunes, etc. The iTunes 12 navigation bar can be customized to your preferences and you can decide which icons should appear outside the drop-down menu.
- You’ll miss the old items in the navigation bar, like Radio, Playlists, Videos, Genres, Artists, Albums, Songs, and more. The new navigation bar includes new options like iTunes Store, Playlist, Radio, Match, and My Music, and they have been shifted to the right and placed in a drop-down menu.
- Apple has revamped the design of the Apps screen and the iTunes Store. The new design is flatter and resembles the iOS 8 App Store. The display cards in the carousel no longer exist. Instead, they appear as flat scrollable banners. The font has also been tweaked a little and the shadows have been removed.
What’s New in iTunes 22.214.171.124?
iTunes 126.96.36.199 is more focused on making the software and its data more secure. In comparison to earlier versions that worked on Windows 7 and 8, the latest version works on Windows 10 (and beyond) flawlessly and also comes with several security updates.
Note – Apple doesn’t discuss threats or problems with its software in forums. The bug or security vulnerabilities discussed here may or may not be part of earlier versions. While mentioning the details of the latest iTunes version, Apple has only disclosed the security improvements that are part of this newest version. This doesn’t make previous versions less secure.
iTunes 12 had a significant security issue that allowed users to read arbitrary files with the software (an arbitrary file is one that allows you to modify the system). The latest iTunes version (188.8.131.52) has improved state management that addresses this logic issue:
ImageIO could process a maliciously crafted image that allowed arbitrary code execution. This threat is neutralized in the newest version through improved output validation. The update puts a limit on the out-of-bounds write that fixes the issue.
The XML Parser kit had some security vulnerabilities. Using the libxml2 software library, an attacker could process maliciously crafted web content that could lead to code execution. The vulnerability has been addressed by improved memory management which addresses the use of memory after free issue.
The second security vulnerability associated with XML Parser Kit is that a remote hacker could cause arbitrary code execution or unexpected application termination. The issue has been addressed by improving input validation that addresses integer overflow.
iTunes also suffered from the vulnerability in the Webkit, which is a browser engine developed by Apple and used in their Safari browser. The security vulnerability was similar to the issue related to libxml2. It allowed an attacker to process maliciously crafted web content that allowed arbitrary code execution. The security flaw has been addressed by improved memory management.
- Windows Security
A bug in iTunes allowed the malicious application to access local Apple User IDs. The security vulnerability was related to an information disclosure issue that existed in the transition of the program state. The issue has been addressed by improved state handling.
How to Install the Latest Version of iTunes?
The easiest way to install iTunes’ latest version on your Windows PC is to download the setup file from the Apple website or Microsoft App Store. The download file is named “iTunes64setup.exe,” and it’s a compressed archive that consists of six MSIs that take care of everything needed to install and run iTunes 12 on your computer. You need to install these files in the correct order for the software to work correctly.
Among the six MSIs mentioned above, the following three are especially critical:
iTunes comes with two “support” MSIs. The Application Support MSI contains the core files for “Application Support” needed for iTunes.
- AppleMobileDeviceSupport6464.msi (184.108.40.206)
As the name indicates, the “Mobile Device Support” MSI contains the core file needed for the management of the devices that can be connected to iTunes like iPad, iPod, and iPhone.
Bonjour is an optional MSI and it refers to zero-configuration networking. When installed, it enables automatic discovery of devices, computers, and services on the IP network. Bonjour relies on an industry-standard protocol to allow devices to discover each other without the need to configure DNS servers or enter the IP addresses of devices. One advantage of installing Bonjour is that it enables automatic IP address assignment without the need for a DHCP server. It also enables service discovery without a directory server. Apple has submitted Bonjour as an open protocol to the IETF to encourage the standard creation process.
How to Update iTunes to the Latest Version on Windows PC?
If you already have iTunes installed on your PC, the process of updating your iTunes to the latest version becomes a tad easy. Here are the steps that you need to follow:
- Open iTunes on your Windows PC
- Go to the menu bar at the top of the iTunes window, click ‘Help’, and then click on ‘Check iTunes Updates’
- An Apple Software Update window pops up on the screen. The window will list two options – iCloud and iTunes. It will have a checkmark on the box adjacent to iTunes.
- Click on ‘Install 1 item’
- Wait for the iTunes update process to complete
How to Update to the iTunes Latest Version on Mac?
Updating macOS Catalina will automatically update iTunes to the latest version. On your iPhone too, running the latest software update will trigger an auto-update for iTunes.
If you love iTunes and want the application to work flawlessly and continue enjoying a seamless user experience, you need to install the latest version of iTunes on your device. The latest version of iTunes comes with security enhancements and new features that are likely to improve your overall experience.