Transfer Music to iPhone Without Adding It to iTunes Library

The default method of getting music from your Mac/Windows to your iPhone/iPod Touch is to add the music to your iTunes library and then sync the library with the mobile device. What if you want the music on your mobile device, but don’t want to add it to your iTunes library? Here’s the solution to transfer music to iPhone (or iPod Touch/iPad) without adding it to the iTunes library.

1. Open iTunes and connect your mobile device to your Mac/Windows.

2. Click on the device on the left pane and select “Summary”. Under the “Options” section, check the box “Manually manage music and video”. Click “Apply”.


3. Now you can drag your music from the desktop (or any other folder) to the “Devices” section in the left pane.


That’s it. The song/video will only be added to your mobile device, and not iTunes library.

Damien Damien

Damien Oh started writing tech articles since 2007 and has over 10 years of experience in the tech industry. He is proficient in Windows, Linux, Mac, Android and iOS, and worked as a part time WordPress Developer. He is currently the owner and Editor-in-Chief of Make Tech Easier.


  1. Or, if you have Dropbox installed on both your PC and iPhone (and, really, who doesn’t!!), you can just copy your music to your Dropbox folder.

  2. You can also use some iTunes alternative like this iPod file manager, it can upload music to iPhone directly.
    Share it here for someone who hate iTunes, like me :)

  3. And how about from iPhone to PC?? Well. I’ll tell ya how about that!

    Right here:

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