OS X Tip: Prevent iTunes from Opening when Pressing Play/Pause Key

People that own a Mac and use Spotify must have noticed the same annoying behavior of iTunes as I did. When you press the Play/Pause key on your keyboard, not only will Spotify start/stop playback of your music, but iTunes will open and start playing music as well. I don’t know if Apple sees this as an intended feature of iTunes but what I do know is that it’s incredibly annoying to say the least.

After looking around for a while on the Internet for a solution I found a workaround that is very elegant and does not need any additional programs to be installed or any scripts to be run.

The only thing you have to do is start Quicktime Player without any file opened and have it running in the background, doing nothing. To make life even easier you can have Quicktime Player open automatically when you login. You can do this by right-clicking (or Control-click) on the Quicktime Player icon in the dock and select “Open at Login” from the Options menu. An other way of doing this is to open up System Preferences, go to Accounts and add a new login item for Quicktime Player.

Please note that this tip also works for other programs that can be controlled with the media keys like for instance VLC Player.

One thought on “OS X Tip: Prevent iTunes from Opening when Pressing Play/Pause Key”

  1. Very nice fix for what is as you say a very annoying iTunes and Quiktime player. I have truly learned to hate Quicktime. I will play with this and see if it solves the problem. Thanks so much for you suggestion and I’m sure it will lead to a solution.

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