iTunes U Collections – File Storage

If your school has been considering iTunes U with the idea of posting Collections of content, press the pause button for a moment and read this discussion from the Apple Forums. I found Tim’s message because Sarah Lawrence was recently accepted into iTunes U and after gathering some content, videos and PDFs, we quickly ran into a roadblock: How is content uploaded to iTunes U and how are Collections created?

My search led me to find that we were not alone.

Just been given the OK from Apple to build our iTunes U site and am confused since it looks like we need to have our own RSS feed to be able to start a new collection on iTunes U. I don’t understand why, I mean the content will be on Apple’s servers so why can’t we just upload it directly? I can upload Course material directly but not material for a collection.

What have other people done here for their institutions?


Tim’s post was a few weeks old so I didn’t know if he’d see my reply…

I’m experiencing the same troubles/confusion, Tim.

If you have learned of a solution I/we would be interested in what you found.

Thanks for posting your question.


He replied a few days later… (emphasis added)

Found out the hard way: you have to have your own content servers to stream the multimedia and host the RSS. Apple just collect the metadata via iTunesU.

I guess it makes sense, since if all the universities upload all our digital content to Apple’s servers, they would receive an aweful lot of traffic.

For future reference, it would be better if their documentation was a little clearer about the subject.



The take away from this experience can help you if you are considering iTunes U for your College/University. You will need a server to host the content you want viewed within iTunes U.

Learn from Tim and us. It’s not as easy as Apple makes it out to be regarding Collections.

Have you considered bringing iTunes U to campus? Does this have you reconsidering your next steps?


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