In Novermber 10, 2001 Apple Inc. (which sells consumer electronics), decided to capitalize on the need for a portable media player and released the first of the many types of ipods that were to follow. Up until today there have been six types of ipods, which basically corresponds to a new technological generation with regards to portable media devices.
The first ipod ever was called ipod classic and it employed the use of a black n’ white LCD screen about 2 inches wide. Its hard drive could store up to 5 GB of music data, which translated into 300-350 mp3 songs (3 MB each). The classic ipod had a mechanical scroll (while later types of ipods had a touch-sensitive wheel), thus making navigation a piece of cake. An updated version of this ipod was released on March 2002, that was compatible with Vcard (a file format used to display electronic business cards), plus it included an upgraded 10 GB hard drive.
It didn’t take Apple too long, though, to release the second generation of ipods, which took place on July 2002. That was the first ipod where the touch-sensitive wheel appeared, thus replacing the old mechanical wheel. Its design was slightly different, since the ipod’s edges were rounded, plus the FireWire port was covered with a small piece of plastic. Two versions were made available: one with 10 GB storage capacity and one with 20 GB, the only difference being the number of songs that you could store and 100 $ more that you had to pay, if you wanted an ipod of your own. In terms of software, however, the fact that ipod had become compatible with Windows was considered an innovation.
The third of the six types of ipods was released on April 2003: new interface and new design. A dock connector replaced the old Firewire port, while the touch wheel now included four auxiliary buttons just below the screen, thus transforming the ipod into a completely non-mechanical interface. The third generation of ipods came with three versions also, which included a 10 GB hard drive, 15 GB and 30 GB, respectively, that were then replaced by 20 GB, and 40 GB models. Ipods were now made compatible not only with Windows but with Mac also.
The fourth generation of ipod, which were made available on July 2004, had only minor differences from the previous two types of ipods. The touch wheel was slightly modified, so that it became more efficient, and the four auxiliary buttons were positioned underneath the wheel; plus its battery life was extended up to 12 hours (compared to 8 and 10 hours that other types of ipod had).
The fifth type of ipod introduced in 2005 was the first media players device that offered the option of video display. As a result it had a larger screen, it was lighter and thinner, and it was available in many colors so that you could match them with different outfits (if you are into that sort of things).
As for the last of the various types of ipods, it was introduced in 2007. The two versions employed a 120 GB and a 160 GB hard drive. Its design was made even more elegant and the LCD screen had a better resolution. However, the most important achievement of Apple for this ipod was that its battery life was extended up to 36 hours.