At the special Apple event in California today, Steve Jobs announced the release of a brand new iTunes, version 7, which incorporates the movie store that has been rumoured for many weeks.
Jobs was keen to emphasise iTunes market share of the music market, and then provided a rundown of the new iTunes 7 features. The interface has been streamlined and improved, so that, for example, the Source list now includes the Library with separate categories for all forms of media and gives each device its own section.
It also features an Album art view, which can be updated with free album images for all the CDs in your collection that iTunes has in its catalogue. A new Cover Flow view makes use of this generous offer by letting users flip through their collection as if they’re flicking through their CD collection.
iTunes 7 also provides support for gapless playback of songs.
TV show downloads have also been improved for US customers. Jobs pointed out that the store offers 220 shows from over 40 networks. The newly revamped store will offer video at 640x480 resolution, which is four times the resolution that has previous been offered. And, as with music, the software now has seamless playback for videos.
Synchronisation has become smarter, and will let you choose options like syncing the 10 most recent unwatched episodes of downloaded TV shows, and the software will automatically keep replacing the list of shows to those specifications.
In an unusual step, iTunes now lets you move your music collection from one computer to another, so that you can sync your iTunes on both your home and work machine, and transfer purchases between the two.