Working with iTunes, regardless of platform, is a pretty cool thing. iTunes gives you a desktop interface to all of your mobile content, and you get to manage all of your mobile content with your computer … provided it’s authorized to do so. And that’s the key thing – Authorization.
Part of Apple’s Digital Rights Management (DRM) system requires that all content endpoints – an iPhone, an iPod, an iPad, even your Mac or PC – be authorized to use the content you buy and use on them. You can play or use content (music, movies, TV shows, apps, etc.) on an unlimited number of iDevices, but you can only play or use content on up to five computers at any one time.
When you consume content, you do so on an authorized device. Authorizing an iDevice is as easy as signing in with your Apple ID. When it comes to computers, it’s a little bit different. There are a few scenarios here that we need to identify. There are specific reasons why you would want to do each of these. Let’s review the scenarios and the reasons behind them before we get into the ins and outs of making each of them happen.