How to Set Up iTunes Genius

of 03

Introduction to iTunes Genius

Set up iTunes Genius, step 1
Turn on Genius and Sign Into Your Apple ID.

The iTunes Genius feature offers iTunes users two great features: automatically generated playlists from their libraries that sound great, and the ability to discover new music at the iTunes Store based on the music they already like.

In order to use these features, though, you need to set up iTunes Genius. Here's a step-by-step guide to turning it on.

  1. Begin by downloading and installing the latest version of iTunes (Genius works in iTunes 8 and higher).
  2. When that's done, launch iTunes.
  3. Click on the Store menu at the top of iTunes and select Turn On Genius.
  4. This will take you to a screen in which you're asked to turn on Genius. Click the Turn on Genius button.
  5. Sign into your Apple ID (or create one) and agree to the terms and conditions of the service.
of 03

iTunes Genius Gathers Info

Set up iTunes Genius, step 3

You'll need to agree to Apple's legal terms for Genius to continue the setup process.

Once you've done this, you'll be taken to a screen that shows the initial three steps in the iTunes Genius set up process:

  • Gathering information about your iTunes library - In this step, the iTunes program scans your library to collect information about your songs, such as how often you've played them, star ratings, and more.
  • Sharing that information with Apple - With that information collected, iTunes then sends this information to Apple. Apple stores this information in its databases.
  • Delivering the Genius results - Apple's servers then send data back to your iTunes. That data includes music that other people with tastes similar to yours enjoy, suggestions for music you can buy that's similar to what you already own, and more.

As each step progresses, you'll see its progress in the iTunes bar at the top of the window. When one step is completed, a check mark will appear next to it.

The process will take more or less time depending on the size of your library. My library, with 7518 songs, took about 20 minutes to complete the setup process the first time I did it.

of 03

You're Done!

Set up iTunes Genius, step 5

When the initial set up process is done, you'll see a message letting you know Genius is ready to show you new music. Once you see this screen, you can begin using it to create new playlists or suggest new music to you.

With Genius set up, read these articles for tips on how to use it: