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Can You Use iTunes With Other MP3 Players?

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Question: Can You Use iTunes With Other MP3 Players?
Can you use iTunes with other MP3 players? Are there any non-Apple MP3 players or smartphones that are iTunes compatible?
Answer:

It seems like the question "what are the iTunes compatible MP3 players?" should be an easy one to answer. IPods, iPhones, and iPads, right? Well, not so fast.

Did you know that there are other MP3 players, made by companies other than Apple, that are compatible with iTunes--and, with some add-on software, that many smartphones can also sync music with iTunes?

Currently iTunes Compatible

Android devices
Via third-party software:

Microsoft Zune


Previously iTunes Compatible

Blocked By Apple
Both Real Networks and Palm at one time offered software that made other devices iTunes compatible. Apple subsequently changed iTunes to block and disable these features.

No Longer Supported
In the early days of iTunes, Apple built support for a number of non-Apple devices into the Mac OS version of iTunes (the Windows version didn't support any of these players). Though these players didn't support music bought from the iTunes Store, and thus couldn't sync that music, they did work with traditional MP3s managed through iTunes.

The non-Apple MP3 players that were compatible with iTunes were:

Creative Labs

  • Nomad II
  • Nomad II MG
  • Nomad II c
  • Nomad Jukebox
  • Nomad Jukebox 20GB
  • Nomad Jukebox C
  • Novad MuVo

SONICBlue/S3

  • Rio One
  • Rio 500
  • Rio 600
  • Rio 800
  • Rio 900
  • Rio S10
  • Rio S11
  • Rio S30S
  • Rio S35S
  • Rio S50
  • Rio Chiba
  • Rio Fuse
  • Rio Cali
  • RioVolt SP250
  • RioVolt SP100
  • RioVolt SP90

Nike

  • psa]play 60
  • psa]play120

Nakamichi

  • SoundSpace 2

All of these MP3 players are discontinued and though support for them still exists in some older versions of iTunes, if you've got one connected to a computer running old software, don't expect that arrangement to keep working after an upgrade. Don't you want a shiny new iPod anyway?

Last Updated: May 18, 2011


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