So I upgraded to iOS 5.1 and iTunes 10.6 the other day, created a list of Irish music, and headed out the door with my son to go for a St. Patty’s Day run. When I fired up the music app the playlist wasn’t there. I chalked the issue up as an AT&T problem and went about my run with a little help from Pandora.
Upon returning, I entered my WiFi kingdom and checked in on my playlist. Still not there. I looked on my PC, Mac, and MacBook Pro. The playlist was correctly syncing across all three devices. Hmm, why wasn’t the playlist syncing on my iPhone?
Fix Attempt #1: Disable/Enable iTunes Match on iOS devices
Thinking it was a simple iTunes Match issue I figured I would just toggle the iTunes Match on and off. From my iOS device I tapped Settings → Music → iTunes Match. Then disabled iTunes Match off, waited a bit, and turned it back on. In theory, this should reset the iPhone and all I would need to do is open up the Music app and let my music and playlists re-download. I did this and my playlists did not return. Even worse, all 18 playlists that were on my iPhone prior to this mess and the iOS 5.1 upgrade were also gone.
Fix Attempt #2: Reset All Settings on iPhone
Perhaps the issue was somehow related to a setting on the iPhone. Back to the iPhone. Settings → General → Reset → Reset All Settings. I confirmed the action and waited. When the iPhone came back up, all of my settings were reset except iTunes Match. It was still enabled, and the playlists weren’t there.
Fix Attempt #3: Restore iPhone
Perhaps a complete restore will do the trick. I opened up iTunes, clicked Restore, and waited and waited and waited. Finally, after an hour, my iPhone was back up and iTunes Match was not enabled. Awesome. I turned it on, waited for a long time and all my songs, albums, and artists came back, but not my playlists. Thinking the issue was just related to my iPhone I fired up my iPad 2 (with iOS 5.1), enabled iTunes Match, and got the same results.
Fix Attempt #4: Nuke All Songs from iTunes Match
Thinking the issue might be cloud related I turned off iTunes Match on all of my devices and attempted to delete all of the songs from iTunes Match. To do this I had to go to each computer, delete the songs from the library and from iCloud. Then I added the songs to my primary library and turned iTunes Match back on. After a very long wait, iTunes Match was back up and my playlists were syncing across my three computers. When I opened up the Music app on my iPhone, no playlists.
Fix Attempt #5: Call Apple
Since forums and Google searches didn’t resolve my issue I through I would just call up Apple. After a nightmarish automated system I finally talked to a real person. When I explained the issue I was met with, “I understand sir. Can you give me the serial number on your computer.” And when I did I was told that I could not receive support because my hardware was out of warranty. Did it matter that I had multiple Apple products? No, it did not. My options were PAY for customer support or continue Googling. Seriously Apple, this is abhorrent.
Right after I restored my iPhone I gained an empty Genius Playlist. As I closed and opened the Music app, the playlist and its icon in the bottom menu would appear and disappear. Also strange, I could create a new playlist on the iPhone, but the playlists wouldn’t sync nor would they save if I closed and opened the Music app. Even more strange, since reloading my iPhone and re-enabling iTunes Match and Cellular Download the spinning data download icon ceases to stop and my battery runs down (-24% in 18 minutes). WTF is being downloaded? The only thing I haven’t tried is a complete nuking of my iTunes Match, but since there is no RESET button I’m stuck. Stuck paying for a service that I cannot fully use. Stuck wondering what happened. Just plain stuck.
If you have any ideas on how to fix my iTunes Match playlist issue please leave ‘em below. I’m willing to try just about anything at this point.
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