It came to light yesterday that Apple would be releasing an update to iTunes very soon, and right on cue, before the last day of November, Apple has released iTunes 11 for Windows and Mac OSX. OSX users can get the new iTunes as a software update via the App Store, and Windows users can head here to download the software.

Earlier this month, Apple issued a statement that the new iTunes was taking longer than expected and the company needed a little more time to get it right. It stated that it was looking forward to releasing the new version of iTunes before the end of November, and the company has now made good on this promise.

Redesigned with a completely new interface

Redesigned with a completely new interface

Apple first announced the new iTunes for Mac and Windows at the iPhone launch event in September. Besides the design changes and the iCloud integration, the new iTunes features a new look for the online music, apps, TV, and movie stores. It will also have a new interface that keeps your favourite iTunes content at the forefront. With iCloud integration, music, movie and TV show purchases made on any iOS device or computer are displayed in your iTunes library. Apple claims the redesigned iTunes Store, App Store, and iBookstore have been re-thought to make buying content on the iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac or PC simpler.

The new library view lets you watch music, TV shows, and movies, and allows you to click on the category of content you want to browse. The expandable album view allows you to see track listings for individual albums while letting you browse your music library. The new search feature searches across your entire iTunes library, including music, movies and TV shows. The MiniPlayer makes it easy to control your music with a small toolbar; you can skip to the next song or search for something new to play without having to open your library. Up Next is a new way to see what songs are coming up and queue songs or albums you want to hear next.

With iCloud, all of your iTunes purchases are in the cloud, and can be accessed from your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac, PC or Apple TV. The iCloud integration automatically puts all of your purchases into your library on your Mac or PC, regardless of which device you use to buy them. iCloud also remembers where you are in your favourite movies or TV shows no matter which device you’re using.

All these details had been highlighted in the past, but Apple has thrown in a new feature for Mac computers that allows users to scan gift cards using the built-in video camera instead of typing them in. However, one does have the option to type it in should the camera not be able to read the code.

If anyone has updated to iTunes 11, do let us know how you feel about the new interface.

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