Farewell To the iPod: Celebrating the MP3 Player’s Greatest Hits

Vineet Maheshwari

Apple has been a company that has been at the forefront of many technological advances throughout its history. There was the iMac, which catapulted computers from a geeky unknown to a stylish necessity. Then there’s the iPhone, which ingeniously managed to fashion a hybrid of a mobile phone and a personal computer, completely spearheading the current smartphone era. We’re now on our 13th model, and if you’re lucky enough to have one, make sure you protect it, by researching the best iPhone 13 Pro Max screen protectors.

However, the company is now waving goodbye to one of its finest accomplishments, the magical iPod. Apple recently confirmed that its last remaining MP3 device, the iPod Touch, has had its production phased out, and that they are now closing the door on that musical chapter of their history.  

So, we’re bidding farewell to the iPod and its almost twenty-two years at the top, by looking back and celebrating the revolutionary MP3 player’s greatest hits.

iPod 1st Generation

The one that started it all. Portable MP3 players had been available since the mid-90’s, but the technology hadn’t entered the zeitgeist yet, and people were still carting round personal CD players if they wanted to listen to music on the move. Apple changed that when they launched their first ever iPod on October 23rd, 2001. It was first released with 5gb of storage, and promised to hold 1,000 songs, which was an absolute marvel at the time.

It seemed pundits weren’t impressed at first though, with initial reviews being lukewarm at best. They were especially critical of its high-price ($399), and saw it as nothing more than a niche product. However, what they didn’t count on was that the iPod quickly became a status symbol, and because it had the noticeable white headphones, it was obvious when celebrities were snapped using the product, which drove popularity sky-high.

iPod Mini

Sure the iPod was great, but what if you found it cumbersome to carry everywhere? Apple had that same exact thought, and so they designed a smaller model, the iPod Mini, which was released in February 2004. The smaller size meant it could store fewer songs on it, but that was offset by its lower price, with it retailing $249 at launch. It also came in a variety of bright colours, which paired with the cheaper price, made it extremely popular with the younger crowd.

The iPod Mini also had a variety of games loaded onto it, which made it great fun to play when stuck on a boring bus journey. The most popular were Brick, which was invented by Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, Parachute, and the card-game Solitaire. There was another card-game that could be purchased from 2006, Texas Hold’Em, which could be downloaded from the iTunes Store. The only other card-games that were missing then, were blackjack, and baccarat.

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The iPod Mini in all its miniature glory

iPod Photo

By late 2004, the iPod had completely conquered the portable music market, and had powered Apple from being seen as forever in Microsoft’s shadow, to the mega-company that is known today.   The launching of the iTunes store in 2003, meant that iPod owners could choose to purchase individual tracks for $0.99 each from the 100,000s on offer, making it even easier for users to load their devices with their desired music. At first it was only available for Mac computers, but six months later, Apple chose to release iTunes for Windows, which now meant everyone could buy an iPod.

They blew everyone’s minds again when they released the iPhone Photo, in October 2004, which updated the device with a 220 x 170-pixel LCD screen, that could display up to 65,536 colours. It also came with much higher storage capability, meaning that users could, as the name suggested, store all their photos on there. From then on, the colour screen was a mainstay of the later models, further cementing the iPod as the must-have portable music player.

So, whilst the iPod is now truly dead, it will never be forgotten by those who were fortunate enough to spin their finger round its wondrous wheel.

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Vineet Maheshwari is a passionate blogger and relationship oriented digital marketing consultant with over 10 years of experience in SEO, PPC management, web analytics, domain investing, affiliate marketing and digital strategy. He has helped high tech brands connect with customers in an engaging manner, thereby ensuring that high quality leads are generated over time.
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