Apple is finally releasing an alternative to its dreadful iTunes app for Windows users in the form of Apple Music, which is now available for preview in the Microsoft Store alongside an Apple TV app and a new Devices app.
As noted by Aggiornamenti Lumia on Twitter (opens in a new tab), Apple Music and Apple TV are, as expected, new apps capable of running and gaining access to Apple Music and Apple TV, which were previously only accessible via browsers on Windows devices or third-party alternatives such as Cider.
Apple Devices is a new application that enables you to manage your iPhones, iPads, and iPods (you still have them, right?) through Windows by installing software, downgrading, restoring, and backing up data either locally or to iCloud.
This sounds fantastic, but there is a significant catch.
Windows 11. Ugh…
Indeed, Windows 11 is required to use these applications. Particularly Build 22621 or later. (And, based on our limited experience, the apps appear restricted to US users.)
It is unclear why the new apps are only compatible with Windows’ most recent operating system, given that less than one in six Windows devices currently have Windows 11 installed. Windows 11 trails its older sibling Windows 10 by an enormous margin, which accounts for more than 67% of all operating systems, with 16.97% of the installed user base. Windows 11 is only marginally superior to Windows 7, which is still installed on over 10% of Windows devices.
As for the apps themselves, Apple claims that Apple Music will enable you to stream its entire catalog of songs, watch videos, create playlists, and look up lyrics. Essentially, it contains all the features of the Apple Music web app.
Similarly, Apple TV is merely a way to watch the best Apple TV Plus shows and movies in addition to Apple TV channels such as Paramount+. You can also purchase and rent movies and television shows via iTunes. Be advised that if you download an Apple TV preview, you will lose iTunes functionality, including for audiobooks and podcasts, even though these are not covered by any new releases.
Apple Devices, as stated, allows you to sync music, movies, and television shows from a PC to an iPhone, iPad, iPod, or iPod Touch, as well as perform updates, restorations, and backups.
You can now view the apps for yourself in the store. These are preview applications, so they may not function as expected.