How to turn off automatic sync iPhone, iPod in iTunes when plugged in to computer

When you plug your iPhone or iPod into a computer with iTunes installed on iTunes, iTunes will automatically open and try tosync with the device. Apple designed this as a convenience; it cuts out the steps of having to open iTunes manually. But there are a few good reasons to stop auto-syncing to your iPhone or iPod. This article explains why you might want to turn off auto-sync, and how.

Reasons to turn off auto-sync in iTunes

You might not want iTunes to automatically sync your device for reasons like:

  • It is not your computer.Sometimes we plug our iPhone into a computer or a computer that doesn’t belong to us because we want tocharge the battery. In that case, you don’t want your iPhone to try to sync with your computer
  • It is not your main computer.Even if the computer belongs to you, if it’s not the one you normally sync with, it won’t have the correct data on it. You don’t want to accidentally overwrite data you need with outdated information
  • You do not have time.Syncing can take a long time. If you have a lot of data you have to sync or if you have problems syncing certain types of content (when we had problems syncing music in the past; sometimes it took hours to sync basic synchronization) takes a long time. If you’re in a hurry, you won’t want to wait.

Whatever your reason, the steps you need to take to stop auto-syncing are slightly different based on the version of iTunes you have (although they are nearly the same for all versions ).

If you’re running iTunes 12 or later, follow these steps to stop syncing automatically:

  1. Connect your iPhone or iPod to your computer. iTunes will automatically launch. If not, launch it
  2. If necessary, click the small iPhone or iPod icon in the top left corner, just below the playback controls, to go to the Summary screen .
  3. In the Options box, uncheck the box next to Automatically sync when this iPhone is connected
  4. Click Apply in the bottom right corner of iTunes to save your new settings

Turn off Auto-sync in iTunes 11 and earlier

For previous versions of iTunes, the process is quite similar, but the steps and the text are slightly different. If your version of iTunes doesn’t have these exact options, find the best matches and try those out.

  1. Before you plug your iPhone or iPod into your computer, open iTunes
  2. Open the Preferences window (on a Mac, go to iTunes menu -> Preferences -> Devices. On a PC go to Edit -> Settings -> Devices. You may need to press Alt + E on your keyboard to bring it up because the menu is sometimes hidden by default)
  3. In the pop-up window, click the Devices tab
  4. Look for the checkbox labeled Prevent iPods, iPhones, and iPads from syncing automatically .Check it out
  5. ClickOKat the bottom of the window to save your changes and close the window.

Auto sync is now disabled. Quite iTunes and plug your iPod or iPhone into the computer and nothing should happen.

If you’re running iTunes 12 or later, follow these steps to stop syncing automatically:

  1. Connect your iPhone or iPod to your computer. iTunes will automatically launch. If not, launch it
  2. If necessary, click the small iPhone or iPod icon in the top left corner, just below the playback controls, to go to the Summary screen .
  3. In the Options box, uncheck the box next to Automatically sync when this iPhone is connected
  4. Click Apply in the bottom right corner of iTunes to save your new settings

Turn off Auto-sync in iTunes 11 and earlier

For previous versions of iTunes, the process is quite similar, but the steps and the text are slightly different. If your version of iTunes doesn’t have these exact options, find the best matches and try those out.

  1. Before you plug your iPhone or iPod into your computer, open iTunes
  2. Open the Preferences window (on a Mac, go to iTunes menu -> Preferences -> Devices. On a PC go to Edit -> Settings -> Devices. You may need to press Alt + E on your keyboard to bring it up because the menu is sometimes hidden by default)
  3. In the pop-up window, click the Devices tab
  4. Look for the checkbox labeled Prevent iPods, iPhones, and iPads from syncing automatically .Check it out
  5. ClickOKat the bottom of the window to save your changes and close the window.

Auto sync is now disabled. Quite iTunes and plug your iPod or iPhone into the computer and nothing should happen.