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Apple discontinues iPod after 20 years

Apple discontinues iPod after 20 years
10 May, 2022
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Apple, today, announced that it’s discontinuing the last iPod music player remaining on its portfolio. The iPod Touch will sell “while supplies last”, Apple said in a blog post on Tuesday, bringing an end to one of the last remaining pure music players on the market.

“Today, the spirit of iPod lives on. We’ve integrated an incredible music experience across all of our products, from the iPhone to the Apple Watch to HomePod mini, and across 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,” said Greg Joswiak, senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing at Apple.

Apple introduced the first iPod in 2001, at a time when portable music players were picking up speed around the world. According to data tracking website Statista, the company sold 54.83 million units of the iPod in 2008, but sales had fallen to under 15 million units in 2014. The device made for only 1% of Apple’s overall revenue in 2014.

The iPod Touch was first introduced globally in 2007, and had been updated last in 2019. At the time, the company fitted its A10 mobile processor on the iPod Touch, which is the same chip that powered 2016’s iPhone 7.

The device hasn’t been updated since, and music players as a market have more or less disappeared. With Apple’s departure, Japanese Sony becomes pretty much the only company still selling devices in the segment.

The company announced a new version of its Walkman in February this year, though it sells it in select markets only. The Sony Walkman NW-WM1ZM2 is priced at $1300 globally and is meant for audiophiles, who understand and prefer to listen to high fidelity audio.

While the iPod line is gone, Apple isn’t giving up on audio just yet. The company sells its Airpods line of headphones, along with the HomePod smart speakers. Streaming music service, Apple Music, is also amongst its largest service offerings on the market.