Apple iPod Reviews

The most popular MP3 player by far is the Apple iPod. It has such a broad public acceptance that many people refer to all kinds of MP3 players as 'iPods'. The popularity of the iPod MP3 player is due to its stylish design, functionality and not overlooking the aggressive marketing.

iPod Overview

The original Apple iPod was introduced back in 2001 and had a 5 GB hard drive. Even though it's price was quite high, the Apple iPod was a runaway success and quickly became the number one MP3 player. The original model had a circular control pad that has become a standard feature on later generations of iPods.

The current lineup includes three models of iPods -

  • The iPod - with a 30 GB or 60 GB hard drive
  • The iPod nano - a flash memory model in either 1 GB, 2 GB or 4 GB sizes
  • The iPod shuffle - with flash memory in either 512 MB or 1 GB sizes

The latest generation (the fifth generation) of iPod has a color screen and can play videos as well as audio. It has a 16 bit display (65,536 colors) which is 2.5 inch in size. The player can be connected to a TV set for viewing.

iPod Nano

The iPod nano was introduced in September 2005 as the replacement for the iPod mini. The nano has a color display for viewing photos and has many extra features integrated into its operating system such as a world clock, a stopwatch and password protection.

iPod Shuffle

The iPod shuffle does not have a screen which means that songs cannot be selected individually. Instead one has to play back randomly or according to a playlist that was built on a computer and transferred to the iPod shuffle. Because there is no display, the iPod shuffle is tiny, weighing in at less than one ounce and about the size of a pack of sweets. The random play feature was promoted in Apple's advertising campaign: 'Give chance a chance' and 'Life is random' were two of the slogans used for promoting the iPod shuffle.

There are several discontinued models of iPod left behind on the march to the current iPod lineup. As mentioned above, the nano was the successor to the mini - a hard drive player with monochrome display.

iPod Mini

The iPod mini was very popular despite its high price. It was available in five different colors and featured the click wheel - a navigation wheel that could be operated with one hand.

iPod Photo

Another discontinued model is the iPod photo which had a color display for viewing digital images. This model was dropped when color displays became standard on all iPod models in 2005.

Like most MP3 players, all of the iPods can be synchronized with a computer for transferring music back and forth. Unlike other players, however, the iPod requires the use of Apple's proprietary software - iTunes. This software has an integrated front end for buying music from the Internet, and a large part of Apple's iPod revenues comes from these online music sales.

The iPod connects to the computer through the USB port. A cable runs from the USB port to a 'dock' - a device which holds the iPod for data transfer while also recharging the battery. Any new music which has been downloaded to the computer is transferred automatically each time the iPod is placed in its dock.

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