How you can listen to music now that iTunes is on its way out

iTunes has played its last song.

Apple is shuttering its iconic music listening and library app after nearly two decades of revolutionizing how we listen to music in the digital age, the company announced Monday at its Worldwide Developer Conference.

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The shutdown of iTunes comes after Mac introduced a new line of products and software including updated models of the Mac Pro and its new operating system, Catalina. On the new operating system, iTunes, which launched in 2003, will be replaced and consolidated into three separate apps targeted for music, TV, and podcasts.

iTunes’ allure faded in recent years as subscription music streaming services like Apple Music and Spotify changed the digital landscape by simplifying how we listen to music. Apple said the iTunes Store will remain active which means music that was previously bought through the store will not disappear, however it remains unclear what will happen for users with music on their iPhones. Apple’s smartphones are normally backed up through iTunes which helps keep your device in working shape while storing data.

The Los Angeles Times reported Apple Music had more than 50 million paid subscribers this year while Spotify has roughly 207 million months users and 96 million premium subscribers.

If you’re wondering what to do next with iTunes shutting down, it might be time to pivot to streaming services. Here’s a rundown of some affordable options that might work for your music tastes.


The uber-popular music streaming service is available on both desktop and mobile for free. The free version includes ads and won’t allow users to listen to music offline. But if you sign up for the premium package ($10 a month), it allows for ad-less streaming and tons of other specs like podcasts. Family packages run at $15 per month which enables up to six people to log on and listen.

Apple Music

Launched in 2015, it was Apple’s response to other streaming services. Their deals are nearly identical to Spotify’s. Apple offers a free three-month trial before a $9.99 monthly subscription option.


The radio streaming service allows users to craft custom stations based on anything from genre to artists to even albums. There are numerous packages to fit every user including Pandora Premium ($9.99 per month) which allows users to skip as many songs as they want and listen offline.

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