If you’ve updated to macOS Catalina, you probably already know that iTunes is gone and has been replaced with separate Music, TV, and Podcasts apps. So syncing, backing up, updating, and restoring iPhone and iPad (Apple TV, too) works differently with the latest macOS release. Read on for how to sync iPhone and iPad to your Mac in macOS Catalina without iTunes.

Now that iTunes is no longer in macOS Catalina, iPhone and iPad device management on the Mac has a new home: Finder. Once you get used to heading to Finder to sync, backup, update, and restore your iPhone and iPad, everything else should be straightforward.

If you have an Apple TV HD (4th-gen) or earlier, you can also restore it with your Mac (Apple TV 4K ditched the USB-C port so you need to take it to Apple for restores).

How to sync iPhone and iPad to Mac in macOS Catalina without iTunes

  1. Plug in your iPhone or iPad with a Lightning or USB-C cable
  2. If it doesn’t open automatically, launch Finder
  3. Look for your connected iPhone or iPad in the left sidebar under “Locations”

Here’s how a connected iPhone or iPad looks in macOS Catalina looks:

How to sync iPhone iPad Mac macOS Catalina

Check out more about macOS Catalina below:

Read more 9to5Mac tutorials: 

Apple Watch:

iPhone & iPad:

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.

Apple iPhone 11 case deals on Amazon

Check out 9to5Mac on YouTube for more Apple news:

You’re reading 9to5Mac — experts who break news about Apple and its surrounding ecosystem, day after day. Be sure to check out our homepage for all the latest news, and follow 9to5Mac on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to stay in the loop. Don’t know where to start? Check out our exclusive stories, reviews, how-tos, and subscribe to our YouTube channel

About the Author

Michael Potuck

Michael is an editor for 9to5Mac. Since joining in 2016 he has written more than 3,000 articles including breaking news, reviews, and detailed comparisons and tutorials.