Fix iTunes Wi-Fi Sync

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Keep in mind, while you are doing this transfer, don’t expect to use your Apple TV to watch Netflix (or do anything Internet-intensive). I tried to do this, since the iPad wi-fi sync works over the wi-fi local area network, and Netflix works over the internet. Since my AirPort extreme is 802.11g, the bandwidth should be able to handle more than a wi-fi sync and Netflix at the same time. The speed of the transfer clearly does not even take up 10% of an 802.11g network. But no, my Internet connection is also slowed down, making it difficult to watch Netflix (unless I want to stop and start a movie 20 times).

It looks like the Apple ecosystem can’t walk and chew gum at the same time! Apparently, iTunes continually tries to connect to the iTunes Store, even with all the auto-download settings (shown previously) unchecked. So if you have a large collection of videos (I have two seasons of Breaking Bad), make sure you do this transfer at an opportune moment. Surfing the web on my Mac actually works well during this process. Just don’t expect to watch Netflix on an Apple TV, and probably anything else Apple TV consumes from the Internet (Hulu, YouTube, etc.).

It’s unbelievable that this iPad to iTunes transfer can’t be accomplished simply by dragging and dropping or a sync. You can transfer files TO your iPad by dragging and dropping. One would assume the orthogonal case would work. Furthermore, it is ridiculous that iTunes tries to download existing content from the Internet by default, rather than from your iPad. That’s what Appledystopia is here for. This how-to guide gives you the knowledge to move content between iTunes and your iPad, saving you the bandwidth hogging and time-consuming chore of re-downloading content from iTunes. If Apple put a little more thought into their ecosystem, purchases downloaded on one device would be synced across the home network. This is much faster than re-downloading the same content from the Internet. Of course, if you want 1080p video on iTunes and 720p on your iPad, re-downloading would make sense. But it does this for everything, regardless of video resolution or audio quality. It’s simply poor design and implementation. It’s par for the course with Apple’s declining quality. iTunes is a mess!

There are times you may want to download previously purchased content from the Internet. For example, if your iPad is not at home or you deleted the content. If this is the case, just click on the “Purchased” label on the left pane, and select which items you would like to download to your iTunes library. Usually, you just want to download from the Internet once, and copy/archive this file in iTunes over your home network, using the wi-fi sync. Downloading from iTunes is painful, so try to avoid it when possible.

If all this fails, you may just want to reach for your USB/dock cable and sync the old-fashioned way. This, too, can be buggy, but let’s save that for another post.

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