Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Thoughts On iPod's Future

Early on in the iPod's rise to power the complaint was levied against it that iPod didn't offer enough choice in hardware; that there weren't enough different models. It was a valid complaint when there were only three models of different capacities and they all looked the same. However, this unified iPod specs page shows that problem has been pretty well addressed. There are five iPod product lines with a total of twelve distinct models currently shipping.

So what's next for iPod? I think it's pretty clear that the iPod mini will get a bump to 5GB in the near future, with a possible adjustment to it's color palate, the way the old color iMacs often had their colors tweaked with a hardware revision.

I also expect that over time Apple will add some other features people have been demanding. A built-in microphone for recording will happen someday; iPod already supports recording via an optional add-on. Radio will also arrive eventually, either in the form of an AM/FM tuner or possibly a new satellite radio enabled model. I'd also expect some kind of wifi-enabled iPod to work with Airport Express, although I doubt it will happen this year.

The iPod and iPod photo would be the most likely recipients of these features if they aren't added via a whole new model. My guess is that we will see all of these features within the next two years.

2004-01-17 18:26 C&T


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