How to Send Media from Your MacBook to Your iPod, iPhone, and iPad

If you’re cool enough to own an iPod in addition to your MacBook, you’ll be happy to know that iTunes has features for your personal audio and video jukebox as well. iPods, Apple’s multimedia players, comprise an entire family of portable devices ranging from $49 to about $249. They can hold anywhere from several hundred to literally thousands of songs, as well as podcasts, photos, and video.

This great gadget and those like it have become known worldwide as the preferred portable digital media players.

If you own an iPod touch, iPhone, or iPad, you probably already know that these devices can act as your music player as well. You can buy all sorts of applications for these devices at the iTunes Store. iTunes even keeps track of these applications as part of your iTunes Library.

You connect your iPod to any Macintosh or Windows PC that has USB 2.0 ports using the included cable. After the iPod is connected, you can synchronize it with iTunes. By default, this process is automatic: The iPod and the iTunes software communicate with each other and figure out what items are in your iTunes Library (as compared to the iPod Library).

If they discover songs, podcasts, and video in your iTunes Library that are missing from your iPod, the items automatically transfer to the iPod. Conversely, if the iPod contains stuff that’s no longer in iTunes, the iPod automatically removes those files from its drive.

Go back and reread that last sentence about how the iPod automatically removes files from its drive. Apple added this feature in an effort to be responsive to copyright concerns. The reasoning is that if you connect your iPod to your friend’s computer, you can’t transfer songs from the iPod to that computer.

Of course, you could always look at it from the marketing perspective as a feature that makes sure your MacBook and iPod are always in total sync. Whatever the case, pay close attention and read all warning dialogs when connecting to a computer other than your own, or you might wipe out your iPod’s library.

You can change your settings so that iTunes autosyncs only selected playlists. Or, if you’re really nervous, you can manually manage the contents of your iPod with iTunes.

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