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Maxvoltar - iTunes Store Redesign

Maxvoltar is the personal weblog of Tim Van Damme, a freelance interface designer at Made by Elephant.

50° 54' 47" N, 4° 25' 50" E

iTunes Store Redesign

Well, sorta.

Sometimes, the best way to refuel yourself is by working on something that will never see the light of day. A couple of weeks back, I did just that when I realized how outdated the iTunes Store interface looked. I spend 4 evenings on this, and don’t regret a single minute of it. Free to do whatever I wanted without restrictions.

Note: Besides putting the main navigation on top I didn’t change the structure, just took all the existing elements and gave them a fresh coat of paint.

iTunes Store Redesign Small

iTunes Store Redesign Thumb

When creativity is flowing, you shouldn’t neglect it.


  • Kate Mag

    4992 days ago

    It’s refreshing. I think Apple should consider your design

  • David Hughes

    4992 days ago

    Looks so much better and much more Apple.

  • Oscar

    4992 days ago

    The navigation at the top makes it easier to navigate. Maybe apple will contact you about this. Good luck.

  • Paulo Pereira

    4992 days ago

    I agree with you. When working on something that’s not yours or your responsibility, you worry less with all the details and future problems and focus on experimenting and creating something unique without any regrets.

    It’s really nice, Tim. Why don’t you send them?

  • Jordan Arentsen

    4992 days ago

    Very impressive. I like the idea of doing something for yourself, a creative outlet if you will.

  • Alan O'Rourke

    4992 days ago

    Nice job, i like it. The problem i have with iTunes is not its design so much as its lack of responsivness. It does not do a good job of telling you what is clickable, if it has been clicked and if it is doing something.

  • Tony Blessander

    4992 days ago

    Its been ages since I had the time to work on something just for the sake of keeping myself busy but I definitely agree that its a great idea to spend a few days here and there on something where you have total freedom to do anything you want.

    I really like your version of the iTunes store and would love to see it in action as the current design is starting to feel outdated.

  • Craig McCreath

    4992 days ago

    I definitely like what you’ve done here and it’s a subtle change that would make a lot of sense.

    The idea of working on something that isn’t yours but rather something you wish you had a little input into is a refreshing concept. Not only do you get to try new things, but you never know where they might take you.

    Thanks for sharing Tim.

  • Spencer Fry

    4992 days ago

    Impressive redesign, Tim. I’m happy that you chose to only make slight changes than completely re-brand things.

  • Nico du Plessis

    4992 days ago


  • Andrew Wilkinson

    4992 days ago

    This is great! It might not work at this size, but it would be awesome to create some little CD/record cases with a gloss overlay for each album.

  • simurai

    4992 days ago

    Reminds me of Google Chrome. I like it.

    The only problem with the horizontal navigation is.. You might run out of space and have to hide “less important” tabs. Maybe the user can rearrange them, that would be great!

  • Stefan

    4992 days ago

    I’m a fan!
    What an improvement comparing to the actual iTunes Store. Feels like all the clutter is gone. I like the flow of this design, so much better than all the boxes with the blue background. Also nice use of tabs. Too bad you can’t change the theme of the iTunes Store.

  • Tim Van Damme

    4992 days ago

    • @Paulo Pereira: Forgot their email address.
    • @Alan O’Rourke: You’re right. They could easily solve it with a small progress indicator or spinner somewhere…
    • @Andrew Wilkinson: I wanted to add some nice cases, but then realized that doesn’t stroke with the idea of selling digital downloads. When’s the last time you actually bought a physical album at the record store?
    • @simurai: “Less important” tabs would be grouped in the last tab (much like how it’s in Safari when you run out of space for new tabs).
  • Bannachan

    4992 days ago

    Good job, really like the detail on the nav bar.

    My eye keeps getting drawn toward the background of the CD case-ish things in the music tab though, it looks like 4 horizontal columns (although it’s not obviously). Possibly blur the back line or lighten the backdrop?

    Being pernickety though. Nice job.

  • Marcel

    4992 days ago

    Wow, I liked it too. Amazing job!

    I agree with the others: you should send it to Apple.

  • John Sjöberg

    4992 days ago

    It’s overall a nice design, but I don’t like how “New Releases” is connected to the sidebars, nor how the sidebars fill out the whole width.

    Isn’t white space a good thing in design?

  • eraevion

    4992 days ago

    So much more pleasant! Would love to see AppStore after lifting like that. :)

  • matthew

    4992 days ago

    Looks nice, my only immediate view would be that the horizontal tinted bar under the albums and album name and artist breaks it up quite confusingly.

    Id be tempted to simply graduated it vertically so it went from white at the top to whatever it is now at the bottom.

    I think visually it wouldnt seem so confusing then.

  • Pat

    4992 days ago

    My biggest complaint with the iTunes store is actually the lack of a fluid layout. It drives me nuts when there’s a horizontal scrollbar. So long as this design could expand/collapse better than what is currently there, I’d be more than happy to see this design (or something similar) implemented!

  • Don

    4992 days ago

    White space isn’t a term that should be taken literally, John. :)

  • Matthew Lowery

    4992 days ago

    I’m not sure about the Tabs, they don’t really appeal to me, but the rest is 10,000 times better than Apple’s. I think iTunes could take a lesson from Spotify. You know when you want to see info from an artist, you have to click that tiny little arrow? Spotify has the artist/album as a clickable link which is much easier.

  • Daniel

    4991 days ago

    Looks like I’m the only person here who thinks this is a step back. Looks far more cluttered and old fashioned.

    Nice try though: I couldn’t have done it.

  • Michael

    4991 days ago

    I kind of feel the same way as Daniel. I actually prefer the current design. Although, yes, your design is a breath of fresh air, compared to the actual design’s color and tones, it feels like a Rhapsody theme.

    But, to be fair, I’ve never been a fan of the blue color that is being using in the iTunes Store. Clearly, Apple should consider a new wardrobe in that area.

  • Eric Friedman

    4991 days ago

    Looks great – not too much of a change but a much needed refresh. I think speed is a major problem in the store and anything to increase that would be a big help (although that is a backend problem)

  • Victoria

    4991 days ago

    tabs are definitely a good idea.

  • Josh Pyles

    4991 days ago

    Looking good man! I’m glad you didn’t scrap the idea. I wanted to do this same thing at one point, but I never had the time.

  • Ralph

    4991 days ago

    Good job, it looks very slick, but what I’m really in love with is that background image. I hope this doesn’t sound offensive, but could you point me to it?

  • Jake Przespo

    4991 days ago

    You truly are an amazing designer.

    On another note, that redesign looks like it is Apple’s style. Plus it seems like it would take the complicated side of the store out of the user’s face. Cool ideas.

  • TStorm

    4991 days ago

    Top navigation is a great idea. You know what I’d like to see in the iTunes store? A browsing history tab.

  • Andrew Cornett

    4991 days ago

    Love the tabs on top. Great realign, hope this inspires them to give it an update.

  • Carl Räfting

    4991 days ago

    I think the big improvement here, and what really makes a difference, is the use of whitespace, increased line-height, bigger tabs and clickable areas, increased margins, etc, it’s easy on your eyes and easy to scan. Keep up the good work, Tim!

    P.S. Maybe you’ll end up working for Apple one day. ;P

  • Florian Schroiff

    4991 days ago

    It looks really much better than the real thing.

    I saw this on Noah Stokes’ blog and thought Apple had released a redesign. Imagine my disappointment when I opened up the iTunes store and was greeted by the same shiny bars and uninspired typography.

    About submitting this to Apple: They do not want any unsolicited submissions, but if you do submit anything it automatically becomes their property. See Apple’s Unsolicited Idea Submission Policy.

  • Waldemar

    4991 days ago

    Your mockup looks good. Far better than Apple’s design IMO. It’s a pain in the ass to browse Apple’s current iTunes Store.

  • nanochrome

    4991 days ago

    Your mockup looks A LOT better than apple’s design!

  • Tim Van Damme

    4991 days ago

    • Pat: This design would actually perform really well as a fluid layout I think. Don’t forget you’ll always need a minimum width…
    • Daniel: It’s your right to dislike it. A design loved by everyone is a design without risks. And what’s more boring than that? :)
    • Ralph: It’s the default background image on Snow Leopard. Google’s your best friend.
    • Carl Räfting: Thanks for spotting the details :) I’m too much of an Apple fanboy to go work there, I’d be like “Hey guys, guess what cool new hardware I just saw?!”
    • Florian Schroiff: Too bad we can’t make a userscript to manipulate the interface… I’m not going to submit it, never was my intention.
  • Ralph

    4990 days ago


  • Jon Henshaw

    4985 days ago

    Now, if we could only theme iTunes with your design. Definitely a nice refined design. I’d be curious to know if people found your design easier to use vs. the existing design. Regardless, well done! I like it a lot.

  • Noel Hurtley

    4984 days ago

    Looks great Tim. You should fire an e-mail off to Apple with your mockup; maybe they’ll bite?

  • Jeremi

    4984 days ago

    wow, same comment as him ^^^. i usually don’t comment, but this post has actually moved me to comment.

  • All for Design

    4976 days ago

    Waho… Absolutely great.

  • David Banks

    4969 days ago

    Looks pretty good but very safe… not massively different from the original! :)

  • mickerlodeon

    4969 days ago

    Maybe iTunes 9 (which may come at the September iPod event) will also bring some changes to the stale design of the iTunes Store.

  • Chad Engle

    4968 days ago

    That redesign looks awesome and is a ton more intuitive. I give you big kudos on it. Love the look. Maybe they will use it?

  • lipelip

    4968 days ago

    I hope apple will use it! Very nice layout!

  • Tim Van Damme

    4968 days ago

    Chad and “lipelip”: If Apple uses this design, I’ll sue their ass.

  • Trent Walton

    4961 days ago

    I am definitely on the TABS bandwagon. I can’t tell you many times I’ve CMD clicked an album from an artist’s iTunes page & felt foolish when nothing happened. WANT TABS NOW! iTunes, you’re making me look like a jerk.

  • Johannes

    4953 days ago

    I love this.

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