I have been around gadgets for the greater part of my life. I have seen the face of tech gadgets evolve since my early childhood days as I were fascinated by these machines especially by the Hollywood programming I enjoyed during my upbringing. I wanted to own a car such as that in Back to the future — at least have something like Robocop or Terminator and at times I dreamt of building my own computer network, a childhood obsession I have carried on up to today. In those years it was about who carried the iconic brick game (at least to Ugandan standards) and all iterations of Nintendo’s Gameboys. From Just GameBoy to color and advance and the special editions that came with the GameBoy brand until the PlayStation launched.
As the obsession grew so did the urge to crave and own every single latest piece so long as I could squeeze respectable pockets to get it and thanks to my close friend and his constantly traveling dad, they were always at our fingertips. The obsession didn’t only stop at gadgets, it encompassed gaming, music, movies etcetera. As came the gadgets, so came the greed to know about them and at least own one if means allowed it especially in early the 2000s.
I introduce you to the iPod
I am going to narrow the conversation to only media players out of my love for music. From the legendary Walkmans to the disk mans and the MP3 players then came the iPod. And we’re centering on the last mentioned portable music player to drive this interaction. The original iconic music player (iPod Classic) and of course other modifications that came with later models (as marked with adjustments to the click wheel) as time passed by until Apple has finally discontinued them. This has marked the iPod classic’s 13 years tenure as the device that literally changed the way most people listen to music. The original iPod debuted in 2001 and I will have to admit I didn’t own one not until 2005.
It led to many clones and a new breed of iPods to the iPod line
Many clones sprung up to drive on this iconic device’s success, some copying the whole lot while others slightly modified theirs to conform with what Apple had to offer. It was a revolutionary device I must add cool device that disrupted the portable music players then. Apple has improved this device with every generation that drops and even led to culmination of spinoffs or versions the likes of Nano and Shuffle and the iPod touch. The original (*discontinued) went by classic as it gave birth a new gene of iPods whose names I have mentioned to suit every music lovers desires.
Here comes the bad news
Recently the Cupertino based tech titan besides announcing the much anticipated iPhone 6 and its other larger sibling the iPhone 6 Plus came the bad news of retiring the iPod classic. Economically I would agree with Apple since the brand has seen dwindling sales ever since the iPhone carried all media capabilities of the player first with the iPod as a native app before disbanding it to standalone apps of music and video and so the iPhone took a lead advantage since it could also make calls.
Memories not forgotten as it was a wake up call for Sony and Microsoft
The memories I have with every iteration of iPods I have ever owned until the 4th generation iPod touch makes me recount what it meant carrying one, the status it gave to those that owned them. I think it’s a sickness orchestrated by Apple since their devices command a premium and are known for quality. Owning those 1000+ songs on a device that fit in ones pocket with exceptional designs gave the competition a run for their money. Sony tried to replicate Apple’s success with its Walkman series though they didn’t pick and Microsoft retaliated with the ill-fated Zune that disappeared into oblivion. I used the aforementioned devices but they were no match to Apple’s iPod with a cult following though they delivered in some aspects where the iPod was lacking. We shall live to remember the iPod Classic R.I.P.