CDT on Friday, April 25, 2008, From dallasnews.com
I got an iTunes gift card as a thank-you gift from my work. I've used iTunes to play my CDs, but I've never purchased any music there. Does the gift card lose value over time like some gift cards I've received? Also, what do I need to do to use the card online?
ITunes gift cards are quite handy and a very nice gift.
You'll need to set up an account at the iTunes Music Store to use the card. Most people think they'll need a credit card to create an iTunes account, but that's not true.
If you just click the "sign in" button to create an account, you'll need a credit card. But if you click the "redeem" link in the quick links box, you can enter the 16-digit code from the back of the gift card and create an iTunes account with the option to not enter a credit card on the payment screen.
If your purchase exceeds the gift card value, you'll be given a chance to complete the purchase with a credit card.
Of course, most people do sign up with a credit card so they can have the convenience of ordering on demand.
You can keep buying gift cards and entering the codes, and the credits will be stored in your account. ITunes gift cards do not reduce in value over time, but I recommend you enter the codes as soon as you can because you might lose the card and then you'd be out of luck.
Something else you should know about iTunes: Your account will allow you to play your purchased music on up to five computers, but to use more than one you'll have to manually copy the song files to the new computer. You can only download the music you buy once.
Jim Rossman is technical manager of Macintosh support for A.H. Belo Corporation.