iTunes Match - A component of Apple's iCloud service that allows users to add music that they own to their iCloud account without uploading it.
While iCloud automatically adds a user's purchases from the iTunes Store to their iCloud account, it doesn't address music that users have gotten from other places, such as by ripping it from their CDs or at other music stores. If users want to include this music in their iCloud account, so that it can be backed up in iCloud and automatically synced to other devices, they have two options: upload their music to iCloud or use iTunes Match.
The feature is designed to save users time, since uploading an iTunes library would likely take days or weeks (depending on the size of the library). Instead, iTunes Match scans the contents of the user's library and then adds the songs in it to their iCloud account from Apple's servers, instead of needing to upload it.
ITunes Match supports up to 25,000 songs on top of those purchased from iTunes. As with iCloud, these songs do not count against the user's 5GB iCloud storage limit.
Music File Types
All iTunes Match songs are 256 Kbps AAC files. This means that if a user has a lower-quality file in their library, they get an automatic upgrade when they use iTunes Match.
- iOS 5
- iTunes 10.3
- iPhone 3GS or newer
- 3rd generation iPod touch or newer
- All iPad models
- Mac OS X 10.7
- Windows Vista or 7
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