With bated breath you hit the update button, hoping that, for once, the new software won’t be a total failure. But from one hesitant user to another who’s dealt with the internal struggle to update anything Apple, don’t be nervous about upgrading from iTunes 10 to 11. I promise it will be worth it.

At first, it’s like walking into the wrong bathroom: a total culture shock. The sidebar? Gone. The layout? Different. The icon? Different. At this point, I was already regretting my update.

But then I played with it, and it is glorious.

The search bar, the miniplayer and the iCloud system got a complete overhaul. The familiar sidebar seemed to be missing, but I found upon further investigation, that clicking “view” then “Show Sidebar” will cause it to pop up on the left side.

The new search bar is ridiculously advanced. If you type in a band, it will show you everywhere that band is located on your iTunes library instead of just the playlist you’re looking at.

Next, the beautiful, convenient update to the iCloud system allows all of your iCloud-enabled devices to work together in sync.

If you begin watching a movie on your iPad, you can resume it on your iPhone in the exact same spot without missing a beat. This works for movies, TV shows, podcasts and even audiobooks.

The new feature, “Up Next,” is by far the best part of iTunes 11.

If you are listening to a shuffled party playlist on iTunes and one of your friends requests a song, you can play that song next without stopping the current jam.

Simply right-click on the song-of-choice, and go to “Play Next.” The song will play next and then jump right back into the original playlist.

The second-best part of iTunes 11 is the miniplayer, which features album covers, the new search bar and the “Up Next” feature.

Apple has outdone itself with iTunes 11. It’s bold, it’s beautiful and it’s available now at www.Apple.com.

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