The Best Way to Synchronize Android With iTunes

Whether you have a Mac as a main computer or you use an iPod or an iPhone to complement your Android device, there’s a good chance that your music collection is all organized and kept in iTunes. Out of the box, your Android smartphone isn’t supposed to play nicely with iTunes to sync music and playlists, but, if you follow this tutorial, your phone and iTunes will become the best of friends.

Step 1: Set Up iSyncr Properly

iSyncr is an Android application for both Windows and Mac that synchronizes your iTunes playlists to your SD card, as previously explained in details by Ruairi. In order to get the most out of iSyncr with iTunes, here are the essential steps to take:

  1. In the Android iSyncr app settings, make sure “Play Count Logging” and “Auto Clean Playlists” are ticked and that you have adjusted the Playcount Sensitivity and Skip Threshold to your liking.
  2. In the computer component of iSyncr, get to the options and tick “Sync iTunes Album Art” and I’d recommend “Remember Selected Playlists” as this will help you not have to re-select your playlists every time.
Settings for iSyncr on Android and the computer

Settings for iSyncr on Android and the computer

Step 2: Set Up PlayerPro Properly

There are several music players that can work nicely with iSyncr; however, from personal experience, I have found PlayerPro to be the best by strides. Tessa Thornton has already reviewed Playerpro for you so I won’t dwell on everything that it can do. I will, nonetheless, tell you that the reasons PlayerPro works best with iSyncr is its ability to synchronize play counts, lyrics, and ratings, aside from the obvious album art and ID3 tags. If you’re like me, and you have several smart playlists in iTunes that rely on ratings, skip counts, play counts, and other tiny details, then you will find this to be a great solution.

These are the settings you should pay attention to:

  1. In General Settings, under Scrobbling, make sure Simple Last.fm is picked. This will make sure the play and skip count are sent to iSyncr and hence iTunes.
  2. In General Settings, under Rating System, pick iSyncr. PlayerPro will then display the ratings you already have in iTunes and sync back any new ones you change on the phone.
  3. In Look And Feel, make sure Prefer ID3 artwork is ticked. This will use the album art embedded in the song’s details instead of checking the SD card and cache for one.
Settings for scrobbling and ratings in PlayerPro

Settings for scrobbling and ratings in PlayerPro

Step 3: Enjoy the Result

The end result is an experience between your Android phone and iTunes that is as close to an iPod as possible, if not similar. Playlists are synchronized, along with artists, albums, embedded album art, lyrics, ratings and other ID3 tag details. Changes in ratings, play counts and skips are sent back to your iTunes library so your smart playlists there take that into account.

iSyncr and PlayerPro widgets with album art and ratings, and lyrics in PlayerPro

iSyncr and PlayerPro widgets with album art and ratings, and lyrics in PlayerPro

Bonus: Remote Control Your iTunes

For those times when you don’t want to have your whole iTunes collection on your phone, but want to control your music remotely while it plays on your computer, there’s Remote For iTunes. After a simple setup process, you are granted access to your complete iTunes library, including playlists, albums, artists, genres, as well as a full search function. In terms of playback, you can view the song’s details, skip, rewind, pause, and activate shuffle and repeat.

iTunes Remote playing screen and library browsing

iTunes Remote playing screen and library browsing

Do you use iTunes with your Android phone for music? If so, have you found another way to make them work together perfectly, or is this tutorial an answer to your previous problems in synchronizing them together? Let us know!