How to Search the iTunes Store from the Menu Bar with Tunesque

Have you ever noticed what a pain it is to do a search in the iTunes store? First, you need to have iTunes open. Second, you have to click on “iTunes Store” in the sidebar. Third, you have to wait for the store to load and only then can you enter your search query. Finally, you’ll have to wait again for your search results to load.

As you can see, it can be a pretty time consuming process, especially if you don’t already have iTunes open. This is where the Mac app Tunesque comes to the rescue.

Tunesque is a time-saving search application for the iTunes store, that sits in your menu bar until you’re ready to use it. With Tunesque you can quickly search for music, movies, podcasts, books, iOS apps, Mac apps and more from your menu bar, and without opening iTunes.

Tunesque is free and requires OS X 10.7 Lion and up. Since the file size is small, it takes less than a minute to download. Once complete, all that’s left to do is drag the .app file to your applications folder.

Tunesque Welcome Window

When you first open it, you’re greeted with a Welcome window. There’s a short message to let you know that Tunesque is running in the background and will be available whenever you need it. You can also choose to  automatically start Tunesque at login. If you change your mind about starting at login, you can always enable/disable this in preferences.

Now that Tunesque is up and running, you can click on the menu bar icon any time you want to complete a search. However, you’ll probably want to tweak the preferences a little first. To get to preferences, click on the Tunesque icon in your menu bar and then click the cog symbol at far right of the search bar.

Where to find preferences in Tunesque.

There are a few options in the small menu that pops up, but you’ll want to head on down to preferences.

Customize the features of Tunesque.

Here you can choose to automatically check for updates, change the country of your iTunes store, select/deselect content to search for, change the color scheme from light to dark and also record a keyboard shortcut.

If you don’t want to click the menu bar icon each time to perform a search, be sure to record a shortcut here.

There’s really no trick to using Tunesque. Just open the search bar using your keyboard shortcut or by clicking on the menu bar icon, then type in whatever you’re looking for. As you can see from my search results below, I searched for calendar.

Tunesque Search Results

I’m definitely satisfied with the design and speed of the search results. Not only are the results displayed quickly, but they’re organized by category and prices are displayed for each item.

Initially, only one item from each category is shown. You’ll also notice that each section has its own keyboard shortcut listed in yellow (i.e. songs is command+1, movies is command+2, etc). When you use one of the shortcuts (or simply click on a specific category), all other categories will minimize, and you’ll only see results for the selected category.

Tunesque search results for a single category.

Also, whenever you scroll your mouse over an item, a window pops out to the left with a thumbnail image, price and full description – no need to open iTunes.

Once you click on the item that you want, only then will the appropriate app will open. Mac apps will open up in the Mac App Store, while everything else opens in iTunes.

Tunesque does such a great job at displaying your results, that you won’t need to open iTunes or the Mac App Store unless you’re sure that you want the item. It’s not only a huge time-saver, but it’s easy to use and will save you resources because you won’t need to open any extra apps. It also remembers your last search and keeps everything as-is, so if you ever need to go back you can pick up where you left off.

Do you think Tunesque is useful? Do you search the iTunes Store enough to need an app like this? Do you know of any other Mac apps similar to this one? Feel free to share in the comments.

Tunesque