Publishers of technology books, eBooks, and videos for creative people

Home > Articles

  • Print
  • + Share This
This chapter is from the book

The iPod's iTunes Store

At one time, the iPod touch's and iPhone's version of the iTunes Store was called the iTunes Wi-Fi Music Store, so named because you could shop only for music (to obtain videos or podcasts, you had to use iTunes on your computer), and you could do so only over a Wi-Fi connection.

Today's iTunes Store is far more capable. Now you can download almost any content offered by the iTunes Store directly to the iPod.

Although this store's face is far less crowded than that of the full-size iTunes Store, the selection is no different. You can choose among the same millions of tracks, podcasts, TV shows, music videos, movies, and iTunes U content in this pocket-size version of the iTunes Store and in the iTunes Store available via iTunes. The feature works this way.

Browsing the little store

Tap the iTunes icon on the iPod's Home screen while you're connected to a Wi-Fi network, and the iTunes Store screen appears. Across the bottom of the screen, you see Music, Videos, Ping, Search, and More icons. Tap More, and you see Podcasts, Audiobooks, iTunes U, Downloads, and Ringtones. Here's what to expect.


Tap Music, and you're taken to The Store's Music section. Across the top of the screen are three buttons: New Releases, Top Tens, and Genres. These buttons work much as they do in the same-named areas of the full-grown iTunes Store's home page (which I hope you'll take the time to explore). Tap them to go to screens with the same names.

New Releases. Here, you see a list of the week's coolest additions—singles as well as albums. To preview or purchase one of these items, tap it to move to that item's screen. (I discuss the workings of this screen shortly.) In addition to the week's new releases, you're likely to see buttons for accessing free tracks and music videos and for viewing the hottest items currently available.

Near the bottom of the list of new releases, you'll see a Redeem item. As its name hints, you tap this item to access the Redeem screen, where you enter the code for an iTunes gift card or gift certificate. Just tap in the Code field, and the iPod's keyboard appears. After you enter the code, tap the Redeem button in the top-right corner of the screen to send the code to Apple.

At the very bottom of the New Releases screen is an Account button that displays your iTunes account email address—, for example—along with the amount of any credit you have ($25 Credit, perhaps, if you've redeemed an iTunes gift card). Tap that button, and you're offered the option to view your account details, sign out, or forget the whole thing by tapping Cancel.

Top Tens. This section features top songs and albums organized within particular genres. Tap Alternative, for example, and the next screen includes two large buttons: Top Songs and Top Albums (Figure 4.1). Tap one to see the top ten items of that kind. To see the complete list of Top Ten genres, tap the More Top Tens button near the bottom of the screen.

Figure 4.1

Figure 4.1 A Top Tens screen.

Genres. This section lists popular genres. What you see when you tap a genre depends on the genre. When I tap Rock, for example, I see New Releases; when I tap Soundtrack, I see titles offered below a Now Showing heading. Tapping Classical, Singer/Songwriter, or Jazz displays a list of albums. The top of each screen includes a couple of buttons that you can tap to go to albums that The Store believes worthy of your attention.

The Music info screen

When you tap an album or track, you're taken the information screen for that hunk of music. There, you'll find the artist's name, the album title, the album price (which you tap to purchase the item), Like and Post buttons (related to the Ping service, which I discuss later in this chapter), a reviews link that takes you to a screen of star-rated and commented reviews, and a list of album tracks with the price of each track next to the track entry. To preview a track, just tap the track.

At the bottom of the screen, you may see More By This Artist, Profile, and Concerts links. (Popular artists have these links, whereas more obscure artists don't.) More By This Artist takes you to the artist's screen, where you can view top songs and albums by that artist. The Profile link takes you to the artist's Ping page, where you can choose to view more music by this artist as well as follow him, her, or them on Ping. Finally, Concerts shows you where the artist is playing, both around the world and locally. In the Concerts screen, you can indicate that you're going to the show and tap a Tickets button, whereupon Safari launches and takes you to the Ticketmaster Web site, where you can purchase tickets.


The Videos area of The Store is where you can rent or purchase movies, purchase TV shows or entire TV seasons, and buy music videos. Tap the Videos button at the bottom of the screen, and you see a layout similar to the Music screen, with three buttons across the top: Movies, TV Shows, and Music Videos.

Movies. The Movies screen displays a couple of featured movies at the top (hot new releases and a link to 99-cent movie rentals, as I write this chapter). Below is a New Releases area with 40 entries; below that are Top Tens and Genres entries. Each entry lists the movie's genre (such as Comedy or Drama), its title, its user rating (1 to 5 stars, including half-stars), and the number of ratings it has received (128 Ratings, for example).

Tap a movie, and you see that movie's screen, where you can buy or rent it (if rental is an option—not all movies are for rent), as well as watch a preview of the movie. To do one of these things, tap the appropriate button.

Below the Buy and Rent buttons is a Reviews entry that displays a five-star scale, reflecting the average rating given by people who chose to submit reviews. These people may or may not have purchased or rented that movie from iTunes (and may not have seen it at all, so take some reviews with a grain of salt). Tap that entry, and you'll see the average rating and the number of people who have rated the movie. Below are user reviews, complete with title, text, date, and rating.

If you'd like to write a review of your own, tap the Write a Review button at the top of the Reviews screen. You'll be prompted for your iTunes password. Enter it, and you go to the Submit Review screen, where you can enter a rating, title, and review. To submit the review, just tap Send.

Below the Reviews entry for some movies, you'll find a Rotten Tomatoes rating. (Rotten Tomatoes is a popular Web site that aggregates critics' movie reviews.) These ratings provide a positive percentage rating (62% positive, for example) as well as a Rotten (green) or Fresh (red) tomato icon, indicating generally how good the movie is. Tap the rating, and you see a Rotten Tomatoes screen that features the Tomatometer (a gauge that measures fresh-to-rotten reviews); excerpts from some reviews; and a Read More On Rotten Tomatoes button that, when tapped, launches Safari and takes you to the Rotten Tomatoes site, where you can read even more reviews of the movie.

TV Shows. This section works almost exactly the same way as the Movies area. The main difference is that the items in this window are entire series (The Wire, for example) rather than single episodes. Tap a show, and you're taken to the season screen, where you can purchase individual episodes and sometimes entire seasons. These screens carry no Preview button. Instead, just tap an episode title, and the movie-player window displays a preview. If you'd like to learn more about an episode (and see the options to rent or purchase it), double-tap the entry. TV Shows screens also have a Reviews button.

Music Videos. Same idea here. You see a couple of featured items at the top of the screen, a list of music videos below, and Top Tens and Genres menus. Tap a video, and you see the Buy and Preview buttons, along with the tapworthy Reviews entry. In most cases, you also find a More By This Artist button. Tap it to see a screen listing other music videos by that artist.


Ping is Apple's music-centric social networking service. Similar to Facebook, it lets you find people to follow—ideally, those whose musical tastes you respect, but you can just as easily follow your tasteless pals. In turn, other people follow you. Then you recommend or comment on music available from the iTunes Store. (You can't recommend music that's not available in The Store.)

On the iPod touch, you access this service by tapping the Ping entry in the Source list. When you do, you see a screen with three buttons along the top:

Activity. Activity lists everything the people you follow have done, including other people they've followed, the music they've purchased or commented on, and the comments they've replied to. Below each entry are Like and Add a Comment buttons. Tap Like, and your vote of confidence is appended to that entry. Tap Add a Comment, and you can do just that in the resulting Comment screen.

People. Tap the People button, and you see lists of the people you follow as well as those who follow you. (You see just the 10 most recently added people in each list, though you can see more by tapping the Show More link at the bottom of each list.) When you tap a person's entry, you see his Recent Activity screen, which displays the things he's been doing on Ping lately. Tap the Info button at the top of the screen, and you see that person's Info screen, where you can view his picture, the three genres of music that he likes most, where he lives, and a short bio that he's created. Below that info is a list of up to 10 songs that he enjoys, and below that list are links to the people he follows and to his own followers.

My Profile. The My Profile button displays your Ping page, which lists all the things you've done with Ping recently. You have the option to create new comments as well as respond to other people's comments.

Regardless of which screen you're viewing, whenever you see a link to a particular song or album, you can tap it. If you tap a song, a preview of the song plays. If you tap an album, you see a screen that lists all the album's tracks. In this screen, you can preview and purchase individual tracks as well as the entire album.


Search is very iPod-like. Tap this button, and a Search field appears. Tap this field, and the iPod's keyboard appears. Type a song title, album title, or artist name in the Search field; as you type, suggestions appear below. When the result you desire appears, tap it.

The resulting screen displays a variety of media—including some that you may not expect. I searched for Led Zeppelin, and the results screen included a Top Results entry (the albums Mothership and The Complete Led Zeppelin), two albums (Led Zeppelin IV and Led Zeppelin II), two popular songs ("Stairway to Heaven," of course, and "Kashmir"), a couple of ringtones, two Led Zeppelin documentary movies, a couple of Zep audiobook biographies, two podcasts, two TV seasons (the TV series NewsRadio used "Led Zeppelin" in the title of three of its episodes), and those three TV episodes.


When you tap the More button at the bottom of the screen, you see five entries: Ringtones, Podcasts, Audiobooks, iTunes U, and Downloads.

Ringtones. If you seek a way to customize your iPod by having it play 30-second snippets of popular songs when it receives a FaceTime call, tapping this button is one way to go about it. You can purchase these snippets directly from your iPod for $1.29 per ringtone. To preview a ringtone, just tap its title.

Podcasts. The Podcasts screen has its own three buttons: What's Hot, Top Tens, and Categories. If you read the sections on the Music and Videos areas earlier in this chapter, you have a solid idea of how this screen works. Podcasts come in both audio and video form, and all of them are free.

Audiobooks. Like, the iTunes Store sells audiobooks that you can play on an iPod, iPhone, or iPad, or on your computer. Like music tracks, audiobooks can be burned to CD.

iTunes U. If you don't already know, iTunes U is the educational area of The Store, where you can download lectures, classes, and concerts offered (for the most part) by universities and colleges. Again, iTunes U content is free.

Downloads. The Downloads section bears some scrutiny. As you might expect, this area is where you can watch the progress of the content you're downloading. It works like this: When you tap a price, it turns into a Buy Now button. Tap that button, and the item swoops down onto the Downloads icon, at which point you're prompted for your iTunes password (the same password that you use at the iTunes Store).

An icon on the Downloads button blinks, indicating the number of items that the iPod is downloading. Tap this icon, and a screen shows you the progress of the download (Figure 4.2). After the item has downloaded, you can play it on the iPod. When you next sync your iPod, the tracks you've purchased will be transferred from the iPod to your computer.

Figure 4.2

Figure 4.2 The Downloads screen lets you watch the progress of music coming to your iPod.

When these tracks have downloaded for the first time, a new play list appears below the Store heading in the computer-based version of iTunes' Source list. That playlist is called Purchased on nameofiPod, where nameofiPod is the name you've given your iPod. After these tracks are in your iTunes Library, they behave like any others you own. You can burn music tracks to disc, and you can play any media on any of your authorized computers or any other iPods, iPhones, and iPads you may own.

Browsing at Starbucks

Walk into a Starbucks outlet, log on to the store's free Wi-Fi network, and tap the iTunes app, and your iPod is likely to display a Starbucks button. When you tap that button, your iPod will tell you the name of the track that's currently playing in that store, as well as recently played tracks. Using the Starbucks interface, you can purchase any of these tracks on the spot.

  • + Share This
  • 🔖 Save To Your Account

Peachpit Promotional Mailings & Special Offers

I would like to receive exclusive offers and hear about products from Peachpit and its family of brands. I can unsubscribe at any time.


Pearson Education, Inc., 221 River Street, Hoboken, New Jersey 07030, (Pearson) presents this site to provide information about Peachpit products and services that can be purchased through this site.

This privacy notice provides an overview of our commitment to privacy and describes how we collect, protect, use and share personal information collected through this site. Please note that other Pearson websites and online products and services have their own separate privacy policies.

Collection and Use of Information

To conduct business and deliver products and services, Pearson collects and uses personal information in several ways in connection with this site, including:

Questions and Inquiries

For inquiries and questions, we collect the inquiry or question, together with name, contact details (email address, phone number and mailing address) and any other additional information voluntarily submitted to us through a Contact Us form or an email. We use this information to address the inquiry and respond to the question.

Online Store

For orders and purchases placed through our online store on this site, we collect order details, name, institution name and address (if applicable), email address, phone number, shipping and billing addresses, credit/debit card information, shipping options and any instructions. We use this information to complete transactions, fulfill orders, communicate with individuals placing orders or visiting the online store, and for related purposes.


Pearson may offer opportunities to provide feedback or participate in surveys, including surveys evaluating Pearson products, services or sites. Participation is voluntary. Pearson collects information requested in the survey questions and uses the information to evaluate, support, maintain and improve products, services or sites; develop new products and services; conduct educational research; and for other purposes specified in the survey.

Contests and Drawings

Occasionally, we may sponsor a contest or drawing. Participation is optional. Pearson collects name, contact information and other information specified on the entry form for the contest or drawing to conduct the contest or drawing. Pearson may collect additional personal information from the winners of a contest or drawing in order to award the prize and for tax reporting purposes, as required by law.


If you have elected to receive email newsletters or promotional mailings and special offers but want to unsubscribe, simply email

Service Announcements

On rare occasions it is necessary to send out a strictly service related announcement. For instance, if our service is temporarily suspended for maintenance we might send users an email. Generally, users may not opt-out of these communications, though they can deactivate their account information. However, these communications are not promotional in nature.

Customer Service

We communicate with users on a regular basis to provide requested services and in regard to issues relating to their account we reply via email or phone in accordance with the users' wishes when a user submits their information through our Contact Us form.

Other Collection and Use of Information

Application and System Logs

Pearson automatically collects log data to help ensure the delivery, availability and security of this site. Log data may include technical information about how a user or visitor connected to this site, such as browser type, type of computer/device, operating system, internet service provider and IP address. We use this information for support purposes and to monitor the health of the site, identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents and appropriately scale computing resources.

Web Analytics

Pearson may use third party web trend analytical services, including Google Analytics, to collect visitor information, such as IP addresses, browser types, referring pages, pages visited and time spent on a particular site. While these analytical services collect and report information on an anonymous basis, they may use cookies to gather web trend information. The information gathered may enable Pearson (but not the third party web trend services) to link information with application and system log data. Pearson uses this information for system administration and to identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents, appropriately scale computing resources and otherwise support and deliver this site and its services.

Cookies and Related Technologies

This site uses cookies and similar technologies to personalize content, measure traffic patterns, control security, track use and access of information on this site, and provide interest-based messages and advertising. Users can manage and block the use of cookies through their browser. Disabling or blocking certain cookies may limit the functionality of this site.

Do Not Track

This site currently does not respond to Do Not Track signals.


Pearson uses appropriate physical, administrative and technical security measures to protect personal information from unauthorized access, use and disclosure.


This site is not directed to children under the age of 13.


Pearson may send or direct marketing communications to users, provided that

  • Pearson will not use personal information collected or processed as a K-12 school service provider for the purpose of directed or targeted advertising.
  • Such marketing is consistent with applicable law and Pearson's legal obligations.
  • Pearson will not knowingly direct or send marketing communications to an individual who has expressed a preference not to receive marketing.
  • Where required by applicable law, express or implied consent to marketing exists and has not been withdrawn.

Pearson may provide personal information to a third party service provider on a restricted basis to provide marketing solely on behalf of Pearson or an affiliate or customer for whom Pearson is a service provider. Marketing preferences may be changed at any time.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user's personally identifiable information changes (such as your postal address or email address), we provide a way to correct or update that user's personal data provided to us. This can be done on the Account page. If a user no longer desires our service and desires to delete his or her account, please contact us at and we will process the deletion of a user's account.


Users can always make an informed choice as to whether they should proceed with certain services offered by Adobe Press. If you choose to remove yourself from our mailing list(s) simply visit the following page and uncheck any communication you no longer want to receive:

Sale of Personal Information

Pearson does not rent or sell personal information in exchange for any payment of money.

While Pearson does not sell personal information, as defined in Nevada law, Nevada residents may email a request for no sale of their personal information to

Supplemental Privacy Statement for California Residents

California residents should read our Supplemental privacy statement for California residents in conjunction with this Privacy Notice. The Supplemental privacy statement for California residents explains Pearson's commitment to comply with California law and applies to personal information of California residents collected in connection with this site and the Services.

Sharing and Disclosure

Pearson may disclose personal information, as follows:

  • As required by law.
  • With the consent of the individual (or their parent, if the individual is a minor)
  • In response to a subpoena, court order or legal process, to the extent permitted or required by law
  • To protect the security and safety of individuals, data, assets and systems, consistent with applicable law
  • In connection the sale, joint venture or other transfer of some or all of its company or assets, subject to the provisions of this Privacy Notice
  • To investigate or address actual or suspected fraud or other illegal activities
  • To exercise its legal rights, including enforcement of the Terms of Use for this site or another contract
  • To affiliated Pearson companies and other companies and organizations who perform work for Pearson and are obligated to protect the privacy of personal information consistent with this Privacy Notice
  • To a school, organization, company or government agency, where Pearson collects or processes the personal information in a school setting or on behalf of such organization, company or government agency.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of each and every web site that collects Personal Information. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this web site.

Requests and Contact

Please contact us about this Privacy Notice or if you have any requests or questions relating to the privacy of your personal information.

Changes to this Privacy Notice

We may revise this Privacy Notice through an updated posting. We will identify the effective date of the revision in the posting. Often, updates are made to provide greater clarity or to comply with changes in regulatory requirements. If the updates involve material changes to the collection, protection, use or disclosure of Personal Information, Pearson will provide notice of the change through a conspicuous notice on this site or other appropriate way. Continued use of the site after the effective date of a posted revision evidences acceptance. Please contact us if you have questions or concerns about the Privacy Notice or any objection to any revisions.

Last Update: November 17, 2020