It had not happened since the Walkman. Our way of listening to music was earth-shattered, and it was inexplicably admirable to banish silence, and its associated boredom from one’s life. The bright metallic colours, that ubiquitous click-wheel navigation, through more songs than you could wish for and those unmistakeable white bud earphones: it had been done.
Technology was made beautiful.
But thirteen years and twenty-six devices later it seems as if these generation-defining slabs of metal could simply become history without the faintest fuss.
Apple’s latest earnings report shows massive profits (as always), but sales of iPods have dropped; 52% down on last year, and further declines are expected.
Is Apple anything but calm, relaxed and smooth? No, it’s not bad or even surprising news for the company, who can tell by their sales figures that customers are simply switching from a music player to a phone or tablet with that music player built-in.
Nonetheless, the iPod still remains the bestselling mp3 player around, and doesn’t look as if it’s about to freeze in a time-capsule of the 2000s: customers are getting younger still, and we’re all expecting a relaunch, to rush out and have ourselves the newest edition, the one that’s finally been fine-tuned to ultimate status. Still, I enjoy the iPod I have now and think I’ll stick to it.