iTunes Match requirements

I want to start my iTunes Match subscription, but I can’t seem to find if there are any minimum requirements in terms of OS/iOS?
All their page says is: To subscribe to iTunes Match, update your Mac to the latest version of macOS

I have an old machine with Catalina, and an iPhone 6s Plus with iOS 15.7.9

I would assume that there are no big requirements, since this seems to be like a streaming platform with our own music, but I don’t want to pay $25 to then having a hard time trying to get a refund in case it doesn’t work. I can already see how dealing with Apple and refunds could become a nightmare…

I would appreciate if anyone can help me with this.

I havent run into any requirements other then the determination for find this service…

Frankly I would not put to much hope on iTunes Match if you have less known music. More concerning given how far way they hide it I am suspecting that it might be suspended in the near future…

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Things may have changed, but I didn’t find iTunes Match to be useful at all. It often matched the wrong version of an album and anything that wasn’t already in their catalog wasn’t playable. Some albums that did match were missing songs.

Overall it was more frustrating than anything else. I did try it twice, hoping it had improved.


iTunes Match gives you access to all of your music on all of your devices, even songs that you’ve imported from other sources such as CDs.

Do you have a lot of music on your Mac or iPhone that needs to be shared? You can already sync music from your Mac to your iPhone.

I buy and curate all my music on my Mac and sync some to my iPhone. Without paying $25. Otherwise, these days, the cool kids stream or listen to YouTube.

Years back I burned all my CDs to a hard drive and have kept all those files around and backed up. A significant part of my favorite CDs were not available in any streaming service. And sometimes what was available streaming was a different version of a song.

That was the big draw for me – the access to burned CDs along with any music I’d purchased through iTunes. 99% of my music played is using my phone either through headphones or sent to a device. I also travelled a lot. So I thought iTunes Match would be a good option for that.

Unfortunately it never really worked well for actually listening to that imported music.

Nowadays I just sync selective albums from my Mac when I want to have one of the old CDs on there. That works fine, but not as smooth as having my entire library available to me with ease. There are other options I looked at, and a lot would have worked, but the promise and ease of iTunes Match sounded tooooooo good to pass up.

Not the biggest struggle I’ve faced in my life. This was 100% a question of convenience.

I haven’t used it in years but music match screwed up my music collection multiple times. I suggest making a back up of all your music before connecting it to Apple.


Thank you all for your feedback.
I think some context will help some of you understand what I want iTunes Match for.

Even though I do have some songs that are probably available via Apple Music (I use Spotify instead), my main goal is to have an application where I add my personal music (I’m a musician/producer myself) that automatically uploads and is available when I open my iPhone without having to connect it via USB, hitting Sync (which creates a backup… makes no sense to me, but… you know… Apple… haha), and having all that music taking space on my iPhone, which doesn’t have much space available.

Since I’m constantly working on new demos of my own music, I want to just dump those demos, let Music upload it and I can leave the house right away and listen to those demos while I jog or do other stuff, so I can takes notes on what I want to improve/change/delete/add, etc.

You mean the whole service being terminated?

Any suggestions of another app that lets us upload music to some kind of “cloud” and make it accessible on other devices?
Basically my 2 requirements are:

  • Quick to upload (drag and drop is ideal)
  • Access to the music without it being on my phone (streaming from cloud, basically)

You mean the collections inside the Music app? Or even the files themselves on your hard disk (like being deleted, etc)?

Would Plex and Plexamp work for you?

This streams your music direct from a Plex server without downloading to the phone. However, if you add new music, you’d need to refresh the library - which is a click button unless you wait for it to manually update which it does once a night (might be able to change that, but I’ve not checked).

Plexamp is the reason I’ve not switched my media server to Jellyfin.

I used Vox for awhile. They actually let you upload specific file formats and stream from there. The upload and syncing process was kind of slow, but I’m on rural internet so everything involving an upload is slow to me.

The biggest problem I had with Vox was files I bought from iTunes back when they had DRM wouldn’t work. So I’d have to have two split music programs, Vox for all my audio files I burned from CD or weren’t DRM’d, and Apple Music app for any older DRM files I had purchased. Other than that I think they were a good choice for me, but eventually I figured I’d just manually sync things to my phone.

I believe I tried storing things in Dropbox for awhile, but that didn’t work. There was one other company I tried I don’t recall the name and they went out of business at some point.

Do take a look at Vox. It wasn’t ideal, but it’s a valid option and they were pretty responsive customer service wise. As I recall the player wasn’t all that great, but it worked.

I just read your other post on this…if it’s mostly your demo work would Bandcamp or Soundcloud work for this? Not sure what the costs would be and if you can keep those private, but that could be a solution.

I was doing some research and one of the options was Plex, actually.
What I read is that the server is my computer, right?
If so, then it means I have to have my computer on if I want to stream the music on my iPhone. It doesn’t bother me, because my laptop is always on anyway. Just wondering if that’s how it works?
And it seems to be free. At least one of the options, which seems to be the one I need anyway.

I saw that option a while ago, and then today again.
I remember installing their Mac player and one thing that I recall is that their player was not resizable? That doesn’t really help, but…

To be honest, I don’t know what those DRm files are, but I never bought anything from iTunes anyway, so I think that wouldn’t be an issue for me?

The 2 issues I have with this option is that
1 - It takes too much space and my iPhone is one of those 16GB iPhones and I only have like 2GB free
2 - Connecting the cables everyday and waiting for it to Sync AND Backup, is too much time and work for what I need.

My issue with Dropbox, Google Drive, iCloud, is that you can only play 1 song at a time and then stops. Not like a playlist, and that sucks.
I saw that Dropbox has this app called Replay, but it’s only available in their paid plans, which I don’t need at all.

Those 2 options, especially Bandcamp could be an option, but the whole process of uploading music is more work than syncing my iPhone and the Music app. You have to create albums, add titles, and some extra info.
For Soundcloud, the paid plan is too much money for just demos.

Basically all I want to do is:
drag, drop, done!
Wait for it to upload and I’m ready to go! :slight_smile:

The most common problem was files on my drive being “updated”, for example original artwork would be replaced by newer versions. Live tracks replaced by studio tracks, and vice versa. Occasionally CDs would be split into multiple collections. As I said, I’ve not used Apple Music Match in several years but I don’t recall losing any tracks because I replaced the altered tracks from backup.

Yeah if the files themselves on my disk are changed without my permission, even with a backup, that’s messed up!
I mean, even the app messing up with playlists and all that inside the app, is not good, but then messing with the files themselves, it’s definitely not good at all!

So I just downloaded Plex and not only was it super easy to install and set up the server, but it seems that it’s a good option for what I want to achieve.
I still need to get used to how it works when it comes to playlists and all that, maybe come up with my own workflow when it comes to the Libraries and Playlists to allow me to quickly drag and drop files (right now it’s not as simple as Music app where I can drag an mp3/wav into a playlist on the left), but I think I will eventually find a way.
And since I use Keyboard Maestro and Hazel, maybe those can be used to edit some metadata based on the folder on my disk, etc.

Lets see how it goes.
Appreciate you all for your feedback :raised_hands:

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Yes, that’s right - the Plex server needs to be on for it to stream the music.

Looking through my purchased apps, I’ve also seen Cloudbeats. This lets you stream from a cloud storage provider - I used it in the past when I paid for Dropbox and I had my music in there.

No macOS version though :confused:

It seems that each app has very good pros, but VERY bad cons.
I know nothing will be perfect, but there are some very basic features that I would assume all apps would have.
Plex seems very promising, but from my 30min experience so far I can see how some of their features are either non existent or very sloppy.

Do you know if the iTunes Match allows the user to block some songs from being synced? For example if I have a playlist with some songs I want to still have available on my iPhone (via the Sync feature), but I don’t want iTunes Match to check those songs?
If so, then I could use iTunes Match just for my demos and keep everything else “locked”, safe from being messed up by iTunes Match