How to Copy Playlist From iPhone, iPad, or iPod to iTunes on Computer

I went through the trouble of making a killer playlist on my Apple iPod. This playlist took quite a bit of time to create and contained hundreds of songs I currently love listening to. After jamming out to this playlist, I thought “Wow, these songs I selected would make a great playlist for when I listen to music on my computer!”

I attached my iPod to my computer, fired up iTunes and created a new playlist called “Currently Dig”. I then selected the playlist on my iPod and tried to drag and drop them to the playlist on the computer. It didn’t work though. iTunes doesn’t let you copy a playlist from your iPod to your local computer. Nor will it allow you to drag individual songs to from an iPod to a computer playlist.

What a bummer! I just had to find a workaround for this. Fortunately, I was able to find one rather quickly. You can do the following.

Note: You must have the Menu Bar enabled to complete this tutorial.

  1. Connect your iPhone, iPod, or iPad to your computer.
  2. From iTunes on your computer, select your iOS device.
  3. Choose the “On This iPhone/iPad/iPod” tab.
  4. Select the playlist, then choose “File/iTunes” > “Library” > “Export…”┬áto export the playlist to a text file.
  5. Select the “Library” button to switch back to the computer’s library view.
  6. Choose “Playlists” at the top of the screen.
  7. Select “File/iTunes” > “Library” > “Import Playlist…“, then select the text file created in step 4.
    iTunes Import Playlist

There you have it. You have successfully added a playlist from your Apple iOS device to iTunes on your computer.


  1. Linda says

    I’m trying to copy my school playlist ipod music to my home itunes library so I can copy to my own ipad. When I click my school ipod playlist that I want I don’t get the file library export like you have shown above…I get play shuffle, play next, add up then edit playlist etc. can you help?

  2. Celia says

    THANK YOU!! apple had to recently replace my hard drive and i was so worried i was going to lose my favourite playlist with 700+ songs! thank you SO MUCH.

  3. Tania says

    You are an angel – after around 6 weeks of trying to reconstruct my itunes library after an update wiped all my playlists, this has allowed me to repair it from my iPod (that I had not synced, hoping I would find a way to transfer them). Genius.

  4. bgaffe says

    You are AWESOME!!! Thanks so much for your great help. It was the only thing that worked…and so simple!!

  5. carren says

    I keep getting the message that it couldn’t import because some of the music wasn’t in the text file. Should you use a particular kind of text file?

  6. pablo says

    THANK YOU!!!

    You saved my life!… actually, just a perfect pool sunday, but that is more than enough!

    Thank you!!!

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