Apple discontinues iPod after 20 years

It’s one of the most popular Apple products of all time and has revolutionized the way we listen to music.

Now Apple has announced the discontinuation of the iPod, more than 20 years after the very first was released in October 2001.

A spokesperson for the tech giant says the iPod is redefining the way music is discovered and listened to, and its spirit “lives on”.

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The original iPod, pictured here, was the first MP3 player to pack 1,000 songs and a 10-hour battery in a 6.5-ounce case.

The iPod Touch (seventh generation), launched on May 28, 2019, features the A10 Fusion chip, enabling immersive augmented reality and Group FaceTime experiences, along with 256GB of storage.  It is also the last iPod model ever released.

The iPod Touch (seventh generation), launched on May 28, 2019, features the A10 Fusion chip, enabling immersive augmented reality and Group FaceTime experiences, along with 256GB of storage. It is also the last iPod model ever released.

“Music has always been at our heart at Apple,” said Greg Joswiak, Apple’s senior vice president of worldwide marketing.

“Bringing it to hundreds of millions of users like the iPod has impacted more than the music industry – it has also redefined the way music is discovered, listened to and shared.

‘Today, the spirit of the iPod lives on. We’ve built an incredible music experience into all of our products, from iPhone to Apple Watch to HomePod mini, and on Mac, iPad and Apple TV.

“And Apple Music delivers industry-leading sound quality with support for spatial audio – there’s no better way to enjoy, discover and experience music.”

The most recent iPod to be released was the seventh-generation iPod Touch, released in May 2019, while the very first iPod model, with its mechanical scroll wheel and white cover, was the first MP3 player to contain 1,000 songs.

Described by Fortune as “the 21st century Apple music player,” the original iPod was reportedly developed in less than a year and unveiled on October 23, 2001 for $399.

Described by Fortune as “the 21st century Apple music player,” the original iPod was reportedly developed in less than a year and unveiled on October 23, 2001 for $399.

Pictured is the popular iPod Mini, introduced on February 20, 2004, which packed iPod capacity into a smaller design at just 3.6 ounces

Pictured is the popular iPod Mini, introduced on February 20, 2004, which packed iPod capacity into a smaller design at just 3.6 ounces

The iPod shuffle (fourth generation), launched on July 15, 2015, offered a sleek design with up to 15 hours of battery life, 2GB of storage for hundreds of songs, and a VoiceOver button to hear a song's title , the name of a playlist or battery status

The iPod shuffle (fourth generation), launched on July 15, 2015, offered a sleek design with up to 15 hours of battery life, 2GB of storage for hundreds of songs, and a VoiceOver button to hear a song’s title , the name of a playlist or battery status

Described by Fortune as “the Apple music player of the 21st century”, the original iPod was developed in less than a year and unveiled by Steve Jobs on October 23, 2001 for $399.

Also among the most memorable iPod models is the iPod Mini, introduced in February 2004, which had a smaller design and was available in a range of colors.

The iPod Shuffle, on the other hand, first released in January 2005, came without a screen and was the smallest model in the iPod family.

By the time the final iPod Touch model was released, the form factor essentially replicated Apple’s smartphones, with a selection of handy apps.

The iPod Touch can even make phone calls, making the iPod almost redundant to Apple’s almighty iPhone.

Watch Steve Jobs introduce the very first iPod in 2001

Apple’s announcement, made on Tuesday, sparked a wave of fond memories on social media from former iPod owners.

Dutch designer Sebastiaan de With, who uses the @sdw Twitter account, said: “I am so grateful for the iPod.

“It got me into the Apple world at 15. It got me buying my first Mac three years later, which launched my career as a designer.”

Another Twitter user, @NikiasMolina, simply said, “Thank you for changing the iPod world.”

'Thank you for changing the iPod world': Users took to social media to share memories of their first iPod purchase and their love for the Apple device

‘Thank you for changing the iPod world’: Users took to social media to share memories of their first iPod purchase and their love for the Apple device

Apple said customers can purchase the iPod Touch through apple.com, Apple Retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers while supplies last.

Fans are already snapping up the latest iPod Touch devices still on sale, perhaps to keep them in their packaging and turn them into collectibles for years to come.

Twitter user @EthanSteury said: “Since Apple is discontinuing the iPod, I bought one.”

Meanwhile, user @TomGreggors said: ‘How long until the iPod gets a vinyl revival? I’ll be fully on board when it does!

APPLE’S BILLION-DOLLAR RISE

The company's journey to the top of the tech industry has been rocky, having seen Jobs (pictured right in 1976) leave the company in the mid-1980s after his pet project, the first Macintosh computer, had struggling and that he tried to oust then-general manager John Sculley.  Wozniak is pictured on the left

The company’s journey to the top of the tech industry has been rocky, having seen Jobs (pictured right in 1976) leave the company in the mid-1980s after his pet project, the first Macintosh computer, had struggling and that he tried to oust then-general manager John Sculley. Wozniak is pictured on the left

1976: Founders Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak and Ronald Wayne started the company on April 1, 1976 as they began selling computer kits to hobbyists, each built by Wozniak.

The first product was the Apple I.

1977: Apple released the Apple II in June, which was the first PC designed for the mass market.

nineteen eighty one: Jobs became president.

1984: The Macintosh was featured during a Super Bowl commercial break and later officially unveiled at a launch event. It was discontinued a year later and Jobs left the company.

1987: Apple releases the Macintosh II, the first color Mac.

1997: Apple announces it will acquire NeXT software in a $400 million deal that involves Jobs returning to Apple as interim CEO. He officially took the role in 2000.

2001: Apple introduced iTunes, OS X and the first generation iPod.

The first iPod MP3 music player was released on October 23, 2001 at an event in Cupertino and could hold up to 1,000 songs.

Steve Jobs unveils Apple Computer Corporation's new Macintosh on February 6, 1984 in California.

Steve Jobs unveils Apple Computer Corporation’s new Macintosh on February 6, 1984 in California.

Former Apple CEO Steve Jobs with the iPhone

Former Apple CEO Steve Jobs with the iPhone

2007: Apple unveils the iPhone.

2010: The first iPad has been unveiled.

2011: Jobs resigned in 2011 due to illness, ceding the title of CEO to Tim Cook. Job died in October of pancreatic cancer.

2014: Apple unveiled the Apple Watch. It also unveiled its first larger iPhones – the 6 and 6 Plus.

2015: After buying Beats from Dr Dre, Apple launched Apple Music to compete with Spotify and other music streaming services.

Apple CEO Steve Jobs speaks during an Apple event at Apple headquarters in Cupertino, California.

Apple CEO Steve Jobs speaks during an Apple event at Apple headquarters in Cupertino, California.

2016: Apple returns to its roots and announces the 4-inch iPhone SE. Meanwhile, the company is embroiled in a legal battle with the FBI, involving the agency demanding access to the locked phone used by Syed Farook, who died in a shooting after carrying out a deadly attack in December in San Bernardino, California, with his wife. The court order was dropped on March 28 after the FBI said a third party was able to unlock the device.

2017: Apple introduces iPhone X, which removes the home button to make way for a futuristic edge-to-edge display design and a new FaceID system that uses advanced sensors and lasers to unlock phones with just the face of the phone owner.

2018: In a first for the company, Apple is introducing new features in its latest operating system, iOS 12, that encourage users to manage and spend less time on their devices. The move was sparked by a strongly worded shareholder letter that urged the company to tackle the growing problem of smartphone addiction among children and teens.

2019: In January, Apple announces its first drop in revenue and profits in a decade. CEO Tim Cook partly blamed the sharp drop in revenue from China.

2020: In March, Apple closes all physical stores outside of China in response to the coronavirus.

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