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Chapter 4. The iTunes Music Store > Music Store Billing

4.5. Music Store Billing

The iTunes Music store keeps track of what you buy and when you buy it. If you think your credit card was wrongly charged for something, or if you suspect that one of the kids knows your password and is sneaking in some forbidden downloads before you get home from work, you can contact the store or check your account's purchase history page to see what's been downloaded in your name.

4.5.1. The Customer Service Page

If you have general questions about using the iTunes Music Store, have a problem with your bill, or want to submit a specific query or comment, the online Customer Service center awaits. To get there, connect to the Internet and then choose Help → -Music Store Customer Service.

Click the link that best describes what you want to learn or complain about. For billing or credit-card issues, click Purchase Information.


The iTunes Music Store sends out invoices by email, but they don't come right after you buy a song. You usually get an invoice that groups together all the songs you purchased within a 12-hour period, or for every $20 worth of tunes that you buy.

AAC, Copy Protection, and You

Apple's AAC files are copy-protected, but not all AAC files are. Some, which you may have collected from other Web sites, are freely copyable.

How can you tell the difference?

In iTunes, click the questionable track in the music library and then press -I. The Summary tab of the song shows the album cover, technical information about its encoding, who bought it, and where it lives on the computer. If the Kind says "Protected AAC audio file," well, you've got your answer.

(In this picture, the phrase [remote] means that you're checking out a song that's on another computer on the network.)

Incidentally, the suffix on a protected AAC file (as viewed on your desktop, for example) is .m4p. iTunes 4 can play AAC files that were ripped in iTunes, and it can play protected AAC files downloaded from the iTunes Music Store.

But beware: you may have problems playing non-iTunes AAC tracks from another online music service or Web site.

4.5.2. Your Purchase History

To have a look at just how addicted you've grown to buying songs, open iTunes, click the Music Store icon in the Source List, and sign into the store. When you see your user name appear next to the Account button in the iTunes Music Store window, click it. In the box that pops up, click the View Account button.

When you get to the Account Information screen, click Purchase History. In the list that comes up, you see all of the songs you've bought (Figure 4-10).


Every wonder how something would play in Peoria? Now you can see for yourself what's playing in Peoria, thanks to the Radio Charts feature of the iTunes Music Store. Just click the Radio Charts link on the Store's main page to see what's at the top of the pops on 1,000 stations around the country.

Figure 4-10. The Purchase History area records all of the songs and albums downloaded and charged to an Apple Account, which can be useful for bracing yourself for the coming credit card bill. The list starts with the most recent ones.

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