Is it time to declare the death of the iPod?


Are the iPod’s days numbered?

The sales figures are not promising. Last quarter, Apple sold just 6.8 million iPods -- a 10% drop from the same quarter last year. While that is more than the 4 million Macs the company moved in the same time period, it is just a drop in the bucket compared with the 26 million iPhones and 17 million iPads it sold in the same quarter.

In a statement released to the media last week, Apple CEO Tim Cook ignored iPods completely, saying, “We’re thrilled with record sales of 17 million iPads in the June quarter. We’ve also just updated the entire MacBook line, will release Mountain Lion tomorrow and will be launching iOS 6 this fall. We are also really looking forward to the amazing new products we’ve got in the pipeline.”

And as Louis Ramirez at Deal News points out, the iPod hasn’t had a major refresh in two years.


Apple currently has four iPods on the market -- the iPod touch, which starts at $199, the iPod Nano that starts at $129, the iPod Shuffle, which sells for a mere $49, and the iPod classic, which can cost as much as $249 for 160 GB of storage.

It is obvious that the convergence issue is partly to blame for the decline of the iPod -- after all, when your phone is essentially an iPod, why carry an additional piece of equipment just to store your music?

And as Adrian Kingsley Hughes argues at ZDNET, sales of the iPod are also hampered by saturation.

“Apple has sold a shade over 350 million iPods since its debut in 2001,” he writes. “That’s a lot of iPods, and I can tell you as having owned quite a few over the years, they’re incredibly long-lived bits of kit. Everyone who wanted an iPod more than likely has several laying about the place already.”


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