iTunes Store: Troubleshooting iTunes Match


If you are experiencing difficulty accessing or downloading songs from iCloud on your computer or iOS device, here are some troubleshooting steps you can try.


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Make sure you meet the iTunes Match minimum requirements

  • iTunes 10.5.1 or later
  • Mac OS X v10.6.8 or later for Mac
  • Windows Vista or later for Windows
  • iOS 5.0.1 or later for iOS devices

If you are unable to download a song, play a song, or access songs from iTunes Match

Make sure you have an active Internet connection

Be sure your computer or device has an active Internet connection by loading a webpage using Safari or another web browser. 

On an iOS device with cellular support, if you are not on a Wi-Fi network, try enabling 3G cellular data1 for iTunes Match.

  • For iOS 6, tap Settings > iTunes & App Stores > Use Cellular Data > On
  • For iOS 5.1.1 or earlier, tap Settings > iTunes & App Store > Use Cellular Data > On

1Fees may be associated with downloading over cellular networks; contact your wireless carrier for details. 

Check iTunes viewing options

Make sure that your iTunes viewing options are properly set. Choose View > View Options and enable "iCloud Download". A download button will be visible next to songs available for download from iCloud.

Make sure iTunes Match is turned on.

See this article for information about turning on or adding a computer or device to iTunes Match.

If iTunes Match is already enabled on your computer or device, try turning iTunes Match off and then on again.

  • On your Mac, while pressing the option key, choose Store > Turn Off iTunes Match. Turn iTunes Match on again by selecting Store > Turn On iTunes Match.
  • On your PC, while pressing the shift key, choose Store > Turn Off iTunes Match. Turn iTunes Match on again by selecting Store > Turn On iTunes Match.
  • On your iOS device tap Settings > Music > iTunes Match Off, then Settings Music iTunes Match On.

Some songs appear to be missing from iTunes Match

Songs purchased from multiple Apple IDs

Songs containing DRM (Digital Rights Management) may not appear, or may appear grayed out in iCloud. This can occur if your computer is not authorized for playback of that content. Try authorizing your computer, then manually update iTunes Match.

  1. To determine what Apple ID your computer needs to be authorized for, locate and select the song in your iTunes library.
  2. Choose File > Get Info.
  3. In the Summary tab, locate the Account Name field in the right column and write it down. 
  4. Click OK.
  5. Choose Store > Authorize this Computer.
  6. Type in the account name from the Summary field and its password. Click Authorize.
  7.  Choose Store > Update iTunes Match.

Check iCloud Status

Check to see the iCloud status of your songs. Choose View > View Options and enable "iCloud Status". iCloud status will help you to determine whether or not a song was purchased from the iTunes Store, matched, uploaded, or ineligible for upload. Items may not be eligible for upload if:

  • Your computer is not authorized for playback for that item.
  • The music video was not purchased from the iTunes Store or was purchased using a different Apple ID. 


  • If a song contains DRM and is no longer available on the iTunes Store for purchase, the song is uploaded to iCloud and made available for download in protected DRM format. You will be required to authorize your computer or device for playback.
  • A song will not be uploaded to iCloud if the song contains DRM, was purchased using a different Apple ID, and could not be matched.
  • When you subscribe to or enable iTunes Match, your iOS device or computer will be associated to the Apple ID being used for iTunes Match. Learn more about associating a device or computer to an Apple ID.

Some songs or albums are missing artwork

If some songs or albums downloaded to an iOS device from your iCloud library are missing album artwork, try the following:

  1. Make sure you have the latest version of iTunes. You can download the latest version for free.
  2. Launch iTunes on your computer.
  3. From the iTunes menu, choose Advanced > Get Album Artwork.
  4. Once iTunes has completed processing the album artwork, you'll need to update iTunes Match. 
  5. From the iTunes menu, choose Store > Update iTunes Match.
  6. Once iTunes Match has finished updating, launch the Music app on your iOS device.
  7. Locate the songs or albums that are missing artwork, and delete them from your device by swiping left or right over a song. To delete an album, swipe left or right over the album on iPhone or iPod touch. To delete an album from iPad, tap and hold on the album cover until you see the delete button or "X" in the upper-left hand corner of the album cover. Tap the "X" to delete the album.
  8. After you've deleted the song or album, download the item again from your iCloud library by tapping on the download icon. 

Duplicated Playlists

Try the following steps if you are seeing duplicated playlists on your iOS device:

  • Make sure your iOS device is running the latest iOS software. Learn more about updating your iOS device.
  • Delete any duplicated playlists in iTunes.

To delete a playlist in iTunes:

  1. Make sure you have the latest version of iTunes. You can download the latest version for free.
  2. Launch iTunes on your computer.
  3. From the Source List in the left-hand column of iTunes, locate the playlist you would like to delete.
  4. Right-click or Control-click on the playlist title, and choose Delete
  5. Launch the Music app on your iOS device to update iTunes Match on your device. Depending on your device's Internet connection, it may take a few minutes for the changes to be reflected.

Additional Information

About file formats and iTunes Match

  • Songs encoded as MP3 or AAC that have been matched to the iTunes Store will be made available for download as 256 kbps as AAC from iCloud. 
  • Songs encoded as MP3 or AAC that cannot be matched to the iTunes Store will be uploaded as is. These songs will be made available for download in the same format it was uploaded in.
  • Songs encoded as MP3 or AAC that do not meet certain quality criteria will not be matched or uploaded to iCloud.
  • Songs encoded as ALAC, WAV, or AIFF, will be transcoded in iTunes to 256 kbps AAC when uploaded to iCloud.
  • Song files over 200 MB will not be uploaded to iCloud.
  • Matched songs in your local library will not automatically be transcoded to 256 kbps AAC. To obtain a higher quality transcoding, download the matched songs from iCloud.

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Important: Information about products not manufactured by Apple is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute Apple’s recommendation or endorsement. Please contact the vendor for additional information.
Last Modified: Oct 4, 2012
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