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iTunes: How to transfer music to iPhone without syncing

If you don't want iTunes to sync your entire music library when adding music to iPhone, you'll need to deselect automatic sync option. Here's how.

Aileena Ivy Updated on Sep 18, 2023 4:44 PM
  • You can transfer music from iTunes to iPhone without syncing by disabling the automatic sync option, and then drag and drop your songs to your device manually.
  • Turn off iTunes auto-sync and you won't get the Erase and Sync button when transferring music to avoid syncing iTunes library with your iPhone.
  • Third-party tool named iPhone Data Transfer ensures that transferring music to iPhone without iTunes syncing is reliable and easy to operate.

There are several ways to add songs to iPhone without syncing and without worrying about replacing the current data on device.

As we all know, transferring music with iTunes will sync the whole iPhone with iTunes library by default. Although you can enjoy songs from computer or iTunes on iPhone in this way, you may not be able to accept the original music library of iPhone being replaced.

There's still hope. Switching iTunes transfer mode enables you to transfer music to iPhone without syncing. Or for a safer way to transfer music from iTunes to iPhone, try the iPhone Data Transfer instead.

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A note of warning when syncing music collection with iPhone

Generally, when your iPhone is connected to iTunes, iTunes delivers you a message saying "Are you sure you want to remove existing music, movies, TV shows, books, and tones from this iPhone and sync with this iTunes library?", or "Syncing [your iPhone] with this iTunes library will replace media from another iTunes library on [another computer]", or the like.

That's because iTunes auto-sync has been activated. If you don't want to sync your iTunes library to iPhone by default, you can change iTunes transfer mode or try iPhone Data Transfer tool to transfer music to your iPhone without syncing, which won't completely delete everything!

How to transfer iTunes music to iPhone without syncing

By disabling iTunes auto-sync and enable manual transfer mode, iTunes won't actively sync your iPhone. After the default automatic sync function is off, you can manually select songs to add to your iPhone without syncing. Here's how:

[Read more: How to transfer music from Mac to iPhone]

Step 1: Deselect "Automatically sync when this iPhone is connected"

Apple iTunes has "Manually manage music and videos" that you'll need to enable before you can transfer music to an iPhone without syncing.

Before adding your tracks, you need to put the items to your iTunes library.

Make sure you're running the latest iTunes on your computer. If you have a Mac with macOS 10.15 Catalina or higher, launch Finder.

1. Connect your iPhone to your computer.

2. Locate and choose your device. In iTunes, click "Device" icon at the upper left of the window. In Finder, you will find you phone on the left navigation bar.

3. Click "Summary" in iTunes window.

4. Under Options section, deselect "Automatically sync when this iPhone is connected", and check "Manually manage music and videos".

5. Click "Apply" to enable manual transfer mode for your device.

Ensure that "Manually manage music and videos" option is selected.

Step 2: Drag your desired songs onto iPhone

To transfer music from your iTunes library to iPhone, it's easiest to use your mouse to drag your preferred ones there.

1. In the main screen of iTunes or Finder, click Songs to access your library.

2. Choose one song or multiple songs you need to transfer.

3. Drop your selected songs to your iPhone.

Move one or multiple tracks manually.

How to transfer music to iPhone without syncing via iPhone Data Transfer

If you're looking for a more convenient and secure way to transfer your music without syncing, iPhone Data Transfer successfully copies music files between iPhone and iTunes libraries, as well as between iPhone and your computer, in one click.

Download Now!

for Windows | for macOS

During the process, music in any format will be converted to an iPhone-compatible format, and the transferred music won't overwrite your iPhone's existing music files or cause you to lose data. Besides music, the tool also allows you to transfer videos, photos, contacts and other data between iPhones or between iPhone and Windows/Mac.

Here's how to transfer music to iPhone without iTunes syncing:

  • Open iPhone Data Transfer on your computer.
  • Choose "iTunes Library" shortcut at the bottom and then click "Sync iTunes to Device" tab. You can also gain access to your library and see your music by clicking on the "View iTunes Library" tab, and then drag whichever song you want over to your iPhone.
  • On the next screen that appears, check "Music" and "Playlist" to move over.
  • Hit "One-Click to Device" button to kick off the procedure.
  • By far, your music should be added to the iPhone without data syncing and erasing.

How to add music to iPhone without iTunes

It's possible to download music on iPhone without iTunes. The process doesn't involve syncing and deleting existing music on the device. You don't have to add media to iTunes library before the transfer to iPhone.

To try this out, you need to launch iPhone Data Transfer application and keep your iPhone plugged in and then do the following:

1. On the left column of the program window, click "Music" to access your iPhone library.

2. To move songs from computer, click "+" icon at the top center of the screen, then choose the songs you want from the local folder.

Done! You've successfully transferred your favorite music to the iPhone. Open your phone and enjoy it anytime.

Video Guide: How to Transfer Music from iTunes to iPhone Easily

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