Rumors that Apple would release a remote application had been going around since before the App Store went online, but we weren’t exactly sure what to expect from an iTunes remote. A simple “WiFi Apple Remote” may have worked, but Apple’s solution provides so much more in terms of functionality and ease of use.
The approach Apple took with an iTunes Remote application was spot on. Instead of a six-button remote, Apple built Remote to look and behave just as the iPod app does. When you open the app, you’re asked to pair it with an iTunes library. Your iPhone will show up under “Devices” in iTunes, and selecting it will prompt you for the 4-digit pin which your iPhone is currently displaying. After everything is authenticated, your entire iTunes library literally appears on your iPhone. You can search by Artist, Album, Playlist, and more. Essentially, it’s the iPod app plus search.
Remote is extremely easy to use and everything plays through the source device (i.e., iTunes on your computer). You can scrub through, change tracks, play, and pause. You can even use Remote with an Apple TV, which instantly makes your Apple TV 1000x easier to use and navigate. Again, you can search and control content living on the Apple TV just as you can while interfacing with an iTunes library. Additionally, whenever you’re prompted to enter a password or search through YouTube or the Music Store, a keyboard and search field appear on your iPhone for quick text entry. If you have an AirPort Express or an AppleTV, you can also control remote speakers from the app.
Overall, this app totally rocks and is a definite must-have. The few bugs I’ve found will likely be addressed soon via software update, so I’m not counting freezes and errors as part of my rating.
- Control your iTunes Library from anywhere you have WiFi
- Remote Speakers
- Apple TV Support
- Easy Setup
- Great Interface
- Lyrics aren’t displayed
- Views don’t change for each device