Apple has just released a new version of iTunes that deliberately disables the Palm Pre‘s ability to synchronize with this desktop media software.
The Palm Pre allows users to transfer music and video from their PC or Mac with earlier versions of iTunes. Palm had made a fairly big deal of this, and it’s the primary method for transferring multimedia files onto this device.
iTunes 8.2.1, released today, blocks this capability. The description for this update says that it “addresses an issue with verification of Apple devices.”
Apple warned it might do this a few weeks ago. At that time, Palm called this “a direct blow to [Apple iTunes] users who will be deprived of a seamless synchronization experience”, but said that it wouldn’t try to get around any roadblocks Apple put up.
So What Now?
This leaves Pre users with a couple of options. Previous versions of iTunes will continue to synchronize with this webOS-based smartphone, so users can simply refuse to upgrade Apple’s desktop app.
In addition, the Pre can appear as a removable drive on the user’s PC, allowing music and video to be manually transfered.
Long term, Palm has pointed out there are other desktop applications it could consider synchronizing with, though it didn’t specifically list any.