Apple creates U2 album-removal button for unhappy iTunes users

Tim Cook and U2: onstage at September event announcing free album for iTunes users
Tim Cook and U2: onstage at September event announcing free album for iTunes users

U2 haters rejoice - Apple has created a tool that allows users to remove the band's latest album with a single click, after the free release was automatically downloaded to customers' iTunes accounts.

‘Songs of Innocence’ was given away free to fans and non-fans alike in a hit-and-miss marketing promotion announced at an Apple event earlier this month.

Many users complained after the album was automatically downloaded to their iTunes accounts without their permission, and then struggled to remove it.

Customers had moaned that it was not immediately obvious how to delete tracks, which finally led to Apple yesterday releasing a one-click removal button.

Some users took to Twitter to express their dismay, with comments such as "my phone has a virus called ‘U2’, how do I uninstall it?" characterising some of the reaction.

The furore led to Apple responding by adding a facility to delete tracks, with instructions on a dedicated URL. However, the instructions warn that "once the album has been removed from your account, it will no longer be available for you to redownload as previous purchase".

The album is free until 13 October. Apple made it available to around 500 million iTunes customers, unveiling the marketing stunt during an event dominated by Tim Cook’s unveiling of the iPhone 6 and iWatch.

U2 singer Bono admitted at the time of the free giveaway that not everyone would be grateful for the album being foisted upon them. He wrote in a blog post: "People who haven't heard our music, or weren't remotely interested, might play us for the first time because we're in their library.

"And for the people out there who have no interest in checking us out, look at it this way… the blood, sweat and tears of some Irish guys are in your junk mail."

‘Songs of Innocence’ has received a mixed reaction from music critics and fans alike.

Start Your Free 30-Day Free Trial

Get the very latest news and insight from Campaign with unrestricted access to, plus get exclusive discounts to Campaign events.

Become a subscriber


Don’t miss your daily fix of breaking news, latest work, advice and commentary.

register free