I just bought an iPhone 5 and I want to synchronize it with my iTunes library but when I connect the iPhone to my Mac I get a message saying that the iPhone can't be used because it requires iTunes version 10.7 or newer, but when I try to install the required iTunes version I get another message saying that my version of OS X is too old.

As my Mac is from 2009 I can't upgrade to a newer version than the 10.5.8.

Do I seriously have to buy a new Mac to get my iPhone 5 synchronized with my iTunes?

  • 1
    What kind of Mac you're using? You Mac can upgrade to Lion and Mountain Lion. Check your Mac compatible with Lion/Mountain Lion on Apple website. – nguyenvu Aug 28 '13 at 10:29

i tried this and it worked for my iphone 5

check pls: https://discussions.apple.com/message/21665313#21665313 pushc6

Re: iTunes won't sync my music, movies, ringtones... Anything!

Apr 30, 2013 4:39 PM (in response to YoshiCookie)

I was experiencing the same problem and tried all sorts of stuff, including items in this thread with no luck, this is what ultimately worked for me.

  1. Download iFunBox (or other utility that gives you access to the filesystem)
  2. Delete the _iTunes_Control folder
  3. Delete everything in the Purchases folder
  4. Force a sync in itunes
  5. Force delete itunes, then re-download using your same apple id
  6. Profit.

So far I haven't seen any weird problems, other than my songs now sync.


No - you do not need iTunes to use an iPhone 5 with a Mac running 10.5.x - so that can save you time and expense.

The downside, is iTunes won't be doing the management of your iPhone 5 directly, but there are other programs that can talk to iOS 6 devices like iPhone 5 and run well on 10.5 hardware and software.

One program I have used is PhoneView and it allows you to get at most of the data on the iPhone. It doesn't do proper sync like iCloud does - but you might be able to bulk update contacts regularly or merge things on your Mac.

The free trial might allow you to see what's possible before you decide to stick with OS X 10.5 and not use iTunes for sync or if you really need iTunes (or iCloud) style syncing.

  • I use PhoneView, but primarily for pulling data FROM the iPhone. Just one man's opinion, but I would suggest relying upon iTunes as little as possible. As an example, we use Google Apps for contacts, calendar, email and notes; iCloud for backups; DropBox and Box.net for document storage; and Amazon Cloud Player for our music catalog. YMMV, but this setup allows for minimal reliance upon iTunes. – Dave Aug 28 '13 at 13:22
  • @Dave Can you recommend a solution for someone that wants to use iPhone 5 and 10.5.8 as a full-fledged answer? I bet a lot of people would appreciate a starting point to avoid iTunes and extend their older Mac's useful lifespan. – bmike Aug 28 '13 at 13:24
  • the solution offered above is agnostic to OS X version, with the possible exception of syncing contacts and calendar items to the Mac. I haven't deployed SL in several years, so I don't know what's still supported, but once upon a time, iSync, and CardDAV/CalDAV were the methods of choice. Everything is a bit more seamless now with ML and iOS6/7. – Dave Aug 28 '13 at 14:02

I had the same problem. My new iPhone SE won't sync with my old 2009 Macbook and I get the same message to download the new iTunes although I already downloaded it. Instead of having to buy a new Macbook, I subscribed to iTunes Match for $30 per year. It uploads all music, even the music that wasn't bought from iTunes into a cloud. My new phone can now download my whole library from the cloud without having to connect to me Macbook.

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