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Apple to unveil low-cost iPod?

By Julio Franco ยท 38 replies
Dec 29, 2003
  1. When Apple Computer Inc. chief executive Steve Jobs takes the stage at MacWorld next month, analysts expect him to unveil smaller, cheaper iPods and hope he will detail the company's strategy to move into the digital living room.

    The lower-end iPods, which are expected to carry a price tag of about $100 and will hold 400 to 800 songs, are a necessary answer to the bevy of MP3 digital music players now on the market that cost $100 or less, analysts said. Current iPods prices range from $299 to $499 and store 2,500 ton 10,000 songs.

    Read more: MSNBC.
  2. Masque

    Masque TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,058

    And as long as there's competition out there, the prices will keep dropping. I wouldn't be surprised to start seeing them for <$50 within the year. :grinthumb
  3. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Rookie Posts: 2,244

    Since cost has been the big factor that has kept many people from buying an iPod, this is likely to be a very good move.
    With the already huge success of iTunes, cheaper iPods will likely make the service even more successful.
  4. Didou

    Didou Bowtie extraordinair! Posts: 4,274

    Wouldn't it be the other way around though ? Since it seems they're not really making a big profit of iTunes.

    This version of the iPod is probably just the same as before with a much smaller HDD ( probably around 5GB or so ) which is I believe what was be the most expensive part in the player.
  5. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Rookie Posts: 2,244

    Well, my point wasn't about the profit of iTunes but its popularity. I don't think iTunes is designed to make much profit anyway, from everything I've read about it anyway. Though the new cheaper player will likely boost sales of songs even more and make the service even more popular than it already is.

    I'm sure some will still be reluctant because of the DRM or just because they despise Apple, but thats just the nature of things.
  6. poertner_1274

    poertner_1274 secroF laicepS topShceT Posts: 4,172

    I think this is a great idea for Apple. I mean honestly, when are you going to need to listen to all 2500 or 10000 songs at a time? I mean seriously, that is just insane.
    I'm sure by selling this cheaper less capacity iPod they will still make a killing, as the iPod is a very recognizable thing in the portable music industry, and if they can get down to a decent cost and average size I'm sure it will be a HUGE hit.
    And if they make the price less, I think they will make less money on each individual iPod sold, but I'm sure they will sell a helluva lot more of them.
  7. Masque

    Masque TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,058

    Once again....supply and demand. If they can get the fan base, they MAY be able to renegotiate with the Recording Industry (yecch!) and start pulling a little better profit. They as well as their competition still need to prove viability of the product.
  8. Federelli

    Federelli TS Rookie Posts: 361

    I think that the mp3 ammount--price relation is fair enough, don't you?
  9. Masque

    Masque TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,058

    I think it's fair from our end, but we don't know the contracted prices between the vendor and suppliers. There is always room for negotiation there. It's kinda like a rookie quarterback renegotiating his contract after a banner year.
  10. ak_in_charge

    ak_in_charge TS Rookie Posts: 119

    I think the price range complies well with the number of songs you can put on the new ipod. Apple had to do something to keep there name in the market when it comes to mp3's..I think this is a smart move for them...Only time will tell.
  11. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Rookie Posts: 2,244

    If they would now address the battery issue(since the life of the player is limitted to that of the battery which cannot be replaced) then it would look even better to those who are reluctant to buy one. I think the battery issue may be an even bigger concern for many than that of the cost of the larger capacity unit.
  12. ---agissi---

    ---agissi--- TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,977   +15

    I recon that was a really good move. My friend instead of getting an iPod, he got a Creative 20GB Zen for $200. The iPod was/is like twice that. I recon that will without a doubt increase sales.

    They'll fix an issue like this probably in "iPod 2", which will run for $400, while this first iPod will be a lot less.
  13. MaskedBurrito

    MaskedBurrito TS Rookie Posts: 42

    Damn, finally. Talk about overpriced. I'll buy one for 100$ though. It better look just as nice though.....
  14. tripleione

    tripleione TS Rookie Posts: 154

    I was thinking about getting the iPod but at the current price for the cheapest one ($299) I decided against it. However, if Apple decides to unveil a iPod with a price tag of $100 or less, I will definately be snatching one up. Hopefully the only change lowering the cost will be the capacity, not functionality.
  15. Vehementi

    Vehementi TechSpot Paladin Posts: 2,704

    I completely agree. 500 songs on my Winamp playlist seems like alot, I could listen to all of it straight for more than a day, not even repeating any of the songs. But five times that many? There are audiophiles who do listen to that many songs and love them all, and the original iPod was designed for them, not the average end user (such as me, who has 500 songs he listens to on a daily basis). Apple should have come out with the $100 iPod a long time ago, probably since they first came out. For people like me, not mass produce a product designed for the enthusiast.
  16. tripleione

    tripleione TS Rookie Posts: 154

    Heh. I guess Apple concluded that most users don't have a collection of 2500 MP3s. :D

    Like I said before, I've been wanting to get one but the price just keeps me away. If Apple really does begin marketing $100 versions of these iPods, I think their iPod sales will begin dramatically increasing.
  17. p05ta1

    p05ta1 TS Rookie Posts: 25

    I guess the main reason that would keep people from buying it is lack of space. I have a dlink 32meg mp3 player but it is pointless. One album on a player with no way to change to another unless you are at a pc. They only way to sell these is lower the currant ipods to the 100$ price not make a useless product.
  18. chuonthis

    chuonthis TS Rookie Posts: 38

    I don't think the iPod battery life is that big of a problem. It's rated at 10 hours. I'm sure replaceable rechargeable AA batteries might be more attractive but the battery life probably wouldn't be as high.

    Also, another less subtle way for Apple to make money is by selling iPod accessories. The current iPods come with USB 2.0 support but you only get a firewire cable with the iPod so you gotta go out and buy a $30 USB cable if your computer doesn't have firewire support. That's already +30% to the cost of the cheaper iPods. Then people are gonna want a carrying case to protect their investment...and the cheaper iPods don't have a dock or an inline remote control and those are about $30 each.
  19. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Rookie Posts: 2,244

    I was actuaslly refering to the fact that once the battery wears out and will no longer hold a charge(this eventually happens to all batteries regardless of the type) then your unit is useless. With a replacable battery, it would make the unit last much longer. Some people may not mind replacing things every couple of years, but some of us like to use things well beyond the life one component that could have been easily made replacable.
  20. tripleione

    tripleione TS Rookie Posts: 154

    StormBringer, I don't quite understand what you are saying about the batteries...

    Are you saying that the batteries that come with the iPod are the only ones that you can use with it, and that once they die, they can't be replaced? How does one use the iPod after the batteries in it die?
  21. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Rookie Posts: 2,244

    The battery cannot be replaced, it is "built in" so to speak, once the battery will no longer hold a charge, the device is useless.
  22. BrownPaper

    BrownPaper TS Rookie Posts: 407

    supposedly, the cost to have Apple replace the battery is really expensive so people decide to go and buy the next iPod. i am guessing that the battery is too sexy to be readily replaced by the consumer just like how the "sexy" iPod is so expensive.
  23. poertner_1274

    poertner_1274 secroF laicepS topShceT Posts: 4,172

    I just heard somehwere yesterday that you can get it replaced for $90USD, and have it professionally done, or $80USD and do it yourself.

    Oh yeah it was on TechTV, but I am still a little skeptical. The whole battery issue is VERY important, because who wants to buy something that can't be replaced?
  24. tripleione

    tripleione TS Rookie Posts: 154

    No kidding! I wasn't aware the battery wasn't even able to be replaced by the user.

    Man... I was really wanting to get one of these, but if I can't replace the battery when it runs out of charge, I think I'll keep holding off.
  25. Masque

    Masque TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,058

    I know we've become a disposable society, but give me a break! That is WAYYY to much money to hand to the junk collector. Sheesh!
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