Apple quietly releases iTunes 12.6.3 with built-in App Store; version allows for app management, installation

“Apple has quietly released iTunes 12.6.3, which reintroduces the ability to download App Store apps and ringtones from within the iTunes desktop software,” Tim Hardwick reports for MacRumors.

“Apple is making this version of iTunes available because ‘certain business partners might still need to use iTunes to install apps,’ but the download is basically available to anyone looking to reinstate the functionality that was removed in iTunes 12.7,” Hardwick reports. “After the installation, most users will need to rebuild their iTunes Library.”

Hardwick reports, “This special ‘business edition’ of iTunes includes compatibility with iOS 11, iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X. It’s not clear how long Apple will offer iTunes 12.6.3, and the company does not provide technical support for this version, but for those who want the functionality it could be a useful makeweight until Apple comes up with an alternative solution. ”

More info and links in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Confusion regins supreme in certain quarters of Apple Inc.


  1. As I said when 12.6.2 was dumped on us, “This was not a well thought out release”. I won’t argue with those who say that iOS app management doesn’t belong in iTunes. I WILL argue that it needs to be somewhere on the Mac.

  2. Great. That was the reason why I haven’t upgraded to High Sierra yet!
    So I still use iTunes 12.6.2. Now how shall the update be done?

    Upgrade to HS first and then get iTunes 12.6.3?

    But I read “…most users will need to rebuild their iTunes Library…”
    I would prefer to avoid this! (can always be risky)

    So would it be better to update from 12.6.2 to 12.6.3 first (under Sierra) and THEN upgrade to HS? Would that avoid iTunes 12.7?

    1. iTunes 12.7 is an integral part of HS. Yet, you can also now install 12.6.3, thanks to this updater, and run without creating compatibility issues with 12.7. But as you mention, you’ll need to rebuild the iTunes Library for 12.6.3. Of course, a fully cloned backup is advised prior to walking down this slippery Eddy Cue slope.

    2. One has to option/open 12.6.3 and choose a previous library file or rebuild. Big whoop. This is a minor inconvenience compared to the useless POS that is 12.7. (No frakkin’ labels on the dock row? WTF!?) The lack of app control made me furious, mostly because they had offered no alternative whatsoever, and, yes, I bad-mouthed it to at least seven people, per the usual ratio.

  3. Just heard a significantly bad review on KFI, Los Angeles, of iPhone having to do with Apple’s faulty releases. He likened Apple to the once flying Sony which, he said, everyone loved in the 1980s, leaving the impression that Apple is on the same track. He said that it costs too much and that iPhone wannabes are just as good. The host Bill Handel made no counter point. This extended ding against Apple is but one example and bodes badly for its reputation. So I wonder if Apple’s general counsel, Donald J. Rosenberg, has left, in large part, because he has not been able to win decisively against Samsung and Android.

      1. It just highlights their arrogance that they insist they did the right thing regardless of how stupid it is. Unless 12.7.1 or whatever also restore this feature, I feel it’s a shoot to the gut.
        They say they did this for the minority of business users, rather than the majority of consumer users. Thanks Apple for looking out for your customers.

  4. As someone whos had to load apps on new phones several times since they removed the app section of itunes. I have really really hated how terrible it is adding apps to an iphone. I hope they realize how stupid they were with removing this functionality from iTunes.

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