Apple has released iTunes 12.1 with a new media control widget for Notification Center in OS X 10.10 Yosemite, which replicates the basic functionality of the iTunes MiniPlayer (display of what’s currently playing, play/pause button, and skip forward/reverse buttons). It also gives you the option to purchase tracks played from iTunes Radio instantly. Note that clicking the displayed price button in the Notification Center widget automatically buys the song and downloads it to your library — you aren’t brought to an iTunes Store page to ponder your purchase. In addition to music, the Notification Center widget also provides playback control of other iTunes media (movies, TV shows, podcasts, and audiobooks). For more information about iTunes, see “Examining iTunes 12’s New Interface” (20 October 2014).
For a more robust playback control experience, the iTunes MiniPlayer provides album artwork, volume control, searching capabilities, and a listing of upcoming tracks in addition to the aforementioned playback controls (select Window > MiniPlayer, press Option-Command-M, or click the cover art thumbnail in the playback control area at the top of iTunes). The update also promises unspecified improvements to syncing iOS devices — hopefully resolving the Wi-Fi sync issues that have plagued many. (Free, 207 MB via direct download or 97.3 MB via Software Update, 10.7.5+)