Apple quietly launched a new preview service this week that makes it easier for users to view its iTunes music library from the browser.
Dubbed iTunes Preview, the new feature allows visitors to view iTunes content from their browser without being forced to launch iTunes. Previously, when a Web user received an iTunes link, they needed to open iTunes to view its content.
As part of the launch, Apple has updated links in iTunes to redirect to iTunes Preview. When a user copies a link in the software and pastes it into the browser, they will be brought to the song's individual listing on Apple's Web site. The feature is especially handy for those who don't use iTunes, since they can now view an individual song without being forced to download the software.
Aside from individual music listings, iTunes Preview also allows users to sift through artists and albums based on genre. Each individual listing displays all the songs in an album, the album art associated with it, its cost, and other content typically found in the iTunes store. The page also includes a link to the iTunes store in case the viewer wants to buy it. That said, there aren't any song previews in iTunes Preview; users will still need to go to iTunes to hear them.
For now, iTunes Preview features music. There's no telling if Apple will add more content over time. If you want to check it out, copy an iTunes link from within the software and paste it into your browser.