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With iPod launch, Apple places 1,000 songs in your pocket

October 23: Today in Apple history: Apple puts 1,000 songs in your pocket with first-gen iPod launch October 23, 2001: Apple CEO Steve Jobs introduces the primary iPod, a tool able to holding a whole music library in a extremely moveable package deal.

The primary-generation system boasts a 5GB exhausting drive able to storing “1,000 songs in your pocket.” That will not sound too dazzling in a world through which folks can stream the huge Apple Music library from their iPhones. Nevertheless it was a game-changer on the time!

iPod adjustments the course of Apple historical past

A lot because the iPhone was Apple’s try and reinvent cellphones, the iPod was the corporate’s try at creating an MP3 participant that wasn’t horrible to make use of. It took benefit of a brand-new 1.8-inch exhausting drive below growth by Toshiba. Jon Rubinstein, Apple’s senior VP of {hardware} engineering, took the brand new storage system to Steve Jobs and satisfied him that the expertise existed to construct a tremendous moveable music participant.

As CEO of Apple, Jobs received numerous the credit score for the iPod on the time. However creation of the revolutionary system was actually a collaborative effort. Along with Rubinstein, Apple engineer Tony Fadell oversaw growth of the {hardware}. Phil Schiller, Apple’s advertising director, got here up with the thought of a scroll wheel to navigate customers’ music lists.

The identify “iPod” got here from a contract copywriter, Vinnie Chieco, who recalled the well-known 2001: A House Odyssey line, “Open the pod bay doorways, Hal.”

Watch the iPod launch

Jobs unveiled the first-gen iPod a bit over a month after the 9/11 terror assaults, referring to it as a “breakthrough digital system.” He wasn’t improper, and the iPod launch turned an essential milestone in Apple historical past.

“Music is part of everybody’s life,” Jobs mentioned on the time. “And since it’s part of everybody’s life, it’s a really massive goal market all world wide.”

The small white iPod value $399. In comparison with dear gadgets just like the iPhone 13 Professional Max, that appears decidedly low cost for Apple, circa 2021. (Adjusted for inflation, it’s the equal of $618 at this time.) Nonetheless, some skeptics lambasted the system nonetheless.

“All that hype for an MP3 participant? Break-thru digital system?” wrote one notorious on-line commenter with an obvious typo fetish. “The Actuality Distiortion Discipline™ is beginning to warp Steve’s thoughts if he thinks for one second that this factor is gonna take off.”

iPod launch paves method for Apple’s larger concentrate on music

In the long run, the iPod turned an enormous hit for Apple. By 2007, Cupertino offered its 100 millionth iPod. That made it Apple’s hottest product till the iPhone. The system helped drive the success of the iTunes Music Retailer, which turned America’s prime music retailer.

Practically twenty years after the iPod launch, the iPod contact stands as the one devoted music participant Apple nonetheless sells. The latest iteration, launched in Could 2019, comes with as much as 256GB of storage. That’s greater than 50 occasions the storage of the first-gen system.

Whereas Apple might have moved past the iPod, the revolutionary MP3 participant stays baked into Apple’s DNA. The corporate’s concentrate on music led to Apple Music, which at this time is the second-most-popular music streaming service. And the iPod’s white earbuds, which turned synonymous with the gadget, developed into the ultra-successful AirPods.

What was the primary iPod you owned? Let’s hear your reminiscences within the feedback beneath.



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