from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The iPod product line (from left):
iPod shuffle (4th generation)
iPod nano (7th generation)
iPod classic (6th generation)
iPod touch (6th generation)

iPod (from English pod , capsule) is the name of a series of portable digital media players from Apple . They are the world's best-selling portable music players. Some models can also play video files.

Apple plans to link it to its own free iTunes software in order to fill an iPod with multimedia content (music, pictures, videos, address contacts and games). The iPod can be recorded and managed with software from other manufacturers; however, it is not possible to use the file managers in the operating system.

Jon Rubinstein had the idea of producing a music player at Apple with a spacious hard drive as a storage medium . Such devices were on the market at the time, but were not very successful. Tony Fadell brought the concept of the combination of a portable player and the associated online music distribution into the company; he worked as an electronics developer on the iPod. The devices were designed by Jonathan Ive . In 2002 the iPod won the Red Dot Design Award .


2001: In February 2001, Jon Rubinstein showed the then Apple boss Steve Jobs a first hard drive measuring only 1.8  inches and developed the idea of ​​an iPod. Jobs replied "Go for it!" And on October 23, 2001 presented the first iPod with a 5 GB hard drive. To navigate in playlists, to regulate the volume and to select the desired places within a song, this model had a movable scroll wheel .

2002: After the introduction of a second model with a 10 GB hard drive (on March 21, 2002), the second generation of the iPod was announced on July 17, 2002, with a 10 or 20 GB hard drive and a remote control in the headphone cable. The scroll wheel was now called the touch wheel, because it was no longer mechanically movable, but sensitive to touch - with (depending on the model) more than 100 sensors it determined the direction of rotation. Alternatively, these models were available as Windows versions.

2003: The third generation was introduced on April 28, 2003 and was available from September 8, 2003. It came on the market with a new design, touch-sensitive buttons, dock connector (instead of FireWire socket), USB connection and with a reduction in battery charge from 10 to 8 hours. At the presentation, Apple announced 10, 15 or 30 GB hard drives; iPods with hard drive capacities of 20 and 40 GB were sold. In September 2003, the millionth iPod was sold.

Click wheel

2004: In January 2004, the iPod mini was announced. With this device, the touch wheel and buttons were combined for the first time under one surface, the "click wheel"; it was available in silver, blue, green, pink and gold. The demand for the iPod mini was so great that by February 17th, over 100,000 pre-orders had been received. Deliveries began on February 20, 2004 in the USA and on July 24, 2004 in Europe. Since July 19, 2004, the fourth generation of the original iPod was available in 20 and 40 GB models. Like the iPod mini, it now had a click wheel and, according to Apple , the playing time increased from eight to twelve hours. The first pre-orders for the iPod photo and the limited edition iPod U2 were taken on October 26, 2004. The former had a color screen, improved battery life of 15 hours for music and five hours for slideshow playback. The U2 special edition had a black front with a red click wheel and an engraving of the signatures of the four band members of U2 on the back. In addition, buyers got a discount on The Complete U2 in the iTunes Music Store.

2005: On January 11, 2005, two models of iPod shuffle with 512 and 1024 MB of flash memory were introduced. They each had 18 hours of battery life, no screen, and played the pieces of music either in a fixed or random order. New versions of the iPod mini (available in 4 or 6 GB, battery life now 18 hours), the fourth generation iPod (only available in 20 GB) and the iPod photo (now available in 30 or 60 GB) were released on February 23, 2005 . In addition, the prices of all models have been reduced. IPod photo was no longer available on June 28, 2005. Instead, the iPod was now offered with a color screen and capacities of 20 and 60 GB. The iPod U2 Special Edition also got a color screen. Prices for iPod, iPod U2 Special Edition, and iPod shuffle 1GB have been reduced. Software updates to support podcasts were released in July (along with iTunes version 4.9, but only for fourth generation iPods and iPod mini). The iPod nano with two- and four-GB flash memory was introduced on September 7, 2005. iTunes was now available in version 5. Production of the iPod mini has ceased. On October 12, 2005, Apple presented the fifth generation of iPods that could play videos for the first time. It was available in 30 and 60 GB and, like the iPod nano, in two colors. The iPod U2 Special Edition was discontinued. iTunes was available in version 6 with a new video function and video store, in which (at least in the American ITMS) television series, music videos and Pixar short films are also offered for sale.

2006: On January 10, 2006, Apple presented the iPod Radio Remote accessory for iPod video and iPod nano. At the same time, a new firmware version was released that ensured remote control support and corrected some bugs. On February 7, 2006, Apple lowered the prices of the iPod shuffle range and introduced the 1GB iPod nano. On June 6, 2006, the manufacturer presented the new iPod U2 Special Edition with 30 GB. In addition to the special features of the first version, the buyer received a voucher for 30 minutes of “exclusive U2 video material” from the iTunes Store .

Apple unveiled the second generation iPod nano on September 12, 2006 and updated the fifth generation iPod. The iPod shuffle got a whole new design. The iPod was now available in a 30 and an 80 GB version and the screen was now significantly brighter. There were also games for the iPod in the new iTunes store. The iPod nano now had 2, 4 or 8 GB of storage capacity and an aluminum housing in the colors silver, black, blue, pink and green. The iPod shuffle was smaller than the previous generation, had a silver-colored aluminum housing, had an integrated clip with which it could be attached to clothing, and was only available with 1 GB of storage capacity. On October 13, 2006, Bono from U2 presented the iPod nano Product Red in red with 4 GB of memory, the purchase of which is linked to a donation to the Global Fund . A cooperation with the sports shoe manufacturer Nike started on November 1, 2006 : The Nike + iPod package included a pedometer with a transmitter for the shoe and an adapter with a receiver for the iPod nano. On November 3, Apple also offered the iPod nano Product Red in an 8 GB version.

2007: On January 9, 2007, Steve Jobs introduced the iPhone at Macworld , and on January 30, 2007, Apple offered the iPod shuffle in five colors: pink, orange, green and blue were new. On September 5, 2007, the entire iPod line was updated: the iPod shuffle was available as Product Red , the iPod nano could now play videos, the iPod became the iPod classic, which was now available in 80 GB and 160 GB, and the iPod touch was introduced. The iPhone was first sold in Germany on November 9, 2007, after having been available in the US since June 28, 2007.

2008: As of January 21, 2008, the iPod nano was available in pink. On February 5, 2008, the iPod touch was also offered with 32 GB of storage and the iPhone with 16 GB of storage. On February 19th, the iPod shuffle was reduced in price and got a new 2GB version. On September 9, 2008, Apple introduced the fourth generation of the iPod nano, the second generation of the iPod touch and new color variants of the iPod shuffle. Since then, the iPod classic has been available in the 120 GB version.

2009: On March 11, 2009, the third generation iPod shuffle was introduced. It has a storage capacity of 2 or 4 GB, can only be controlled via the supplied headphone remote control and is available in black, silver, green, light blue and pink, and there is also a special edition in stainless steel . On September 9, 2009, Apple presented the next generation of the iPod nano, the iPod classic and a revision of the iPod touch and the iTunes 9.0 program at a special event entitled It's only rock and roll, but we like it .

2010: On September 1, 2010, Apple introduced a new generation of the iPod nano without a camera and video function - but with multi-touch. Furthermore, the fourth generation of the iPod touch was presented. This is thinner and has two cameras on the front and back for video recordings in HD (720p). It is also possible to use FaceTime , which Apple had already introduced with the iPhone 4. It has a gyroscope and retina display , but no flash. The iPod shuffle has been given back a sleeker design and the buttons that many customers lacked in the previous generation. Playlists and VoiceOver are now also supported. Version 10 of iTunes was also presented.

2011: Apple presented an updated version of the iPod touch on October 4, 2011, which is technically identical to the previous generation. It was available in white and came with iOS  5. At the same time, the iPod nano 6G was presented, which has been upgraded with a new user interface, new clock designs and more fitness functions, with which the last recorded activities can be displayed in categories.

2012: Apple introduced an updated version of the iPod touch and iPod nano on September 14, 2012. The iPod touch has a 4 ″ retina display and the A5 processor that was already used in the iPhone 4S. On the other hand, it has become thinner compared to its predecessor and comes with iOS 6. IPod touch is now available in multiple colors. The iPod nano has got a larger display and is slightly similar to the iPod touch, but does not run on iOS. On September 9, 2014, iPod classic ceased sales. In July 2017, the iPod shuffle and iPod nano were discontinued. This makes the iPod touch the last iPod to be produced by Apple.


Every iPod (with the exception of the earlier iPod shuffle generations, which did not support Apple Lossless and AIFF ) supports the playback of music data in the formats MP3 , AAC , AIFF, WAV , Apple Lossless, Protected AAC and the audiobook format Audible . Some iPods can also play video files in H.264 and MPEG-4 formats .

iPhone and iPad

In addition to the main function of telephoning, the iPhone contains the full functionality of an iPod touch and can therefore be viewed as a further iPod model. The user interface is based strongly on the conditions of the iTunes versions from version 7.5, so albums are displayed in the cover flow . The same applies to the iPad .

The iPhone is synchronized with iTunes via USB 2.0 and has space in the flash memory for up to 256 GB (depending on the model) minus the operating system (approx. 700 MB). It was introduced in Germany on November 9, 2007.


First generation

The first iPod, introduced on October 23, 2001, contained a 5 GB hard drive and was only compatible with Mac computers . On March 21, 2002, a 10 GB version was added. The first generation iPods still had a movable, rotating scroll wheel and no dock connector; a FireWire socket served as an interface; the appropriate cable was included.

Second generation

Introduced on July 17th, 2002, equipped with a 10 or 20 GB hard drive and optionally available for Mac or Windows , the case of this device was a little flatter than its predecessor. The mechanical scroll wheel has been replaced by a touch-sensitive touchpad with no moving parts. This difference to the first generation can hardly be seen when looking at the device from the front.

With the second generation, Apple released the first Windows-compatible iPod. The data was still transferred via a Firewire connection. Since iTunes for Windows did not yet exist, the Windows iPod came with the MusicMatch jukebox for synchronization .

Third generation

The third generation iPod was introduced on April 28, 2003 with 15 and 30 GB hard drives. On September 4, 2003, Apple increased the capacities to 20 and 40 GB. In January 2004 the 10 GB model was replaced by the re-introduced 15 GB model. The buttons on this device were no longer arranged in a circle around the scroll wheel, but in a row above.

The separation between Mac and Windows was lifted, the same device could be used with both operating systems. The FireWire or USB connection previously located at the top (on the Windows model) has been replaced by a multifunction bus, called a dock connector, at the bottom. With this new connection, a dock for standing upright while charging and synchronizing at the same time and an additional line-out output was brought out. The dock connector offers other manufacturers an interface to the iPod. Use has been subject to a license since mid-2005.

Fourth generation

The fourth generation was introduced on July 19, 2004 with 20 and 40 GB. The scroll wheel has been replaced by the ClickWheel known from the iPod mini, which combines the scroll wheel and buttons. The battery now lasts up to twelve hours, which has been achieved through improvements in the firmware . The iPod can now be supplied not only with data but also with power via the USB 2.0 cable. The menu navigation has been slightly revised. The playback speed of audio books can be controlled without shifting the voice frequencies. Several on-the-go playlists can be managed and titles can also be removed from them.

iPod photo

The iPod photo was introduced by Apple on October 26, 2004 and has a color screen (220 × 176 pixels, 16 bit). This means that in addition to music, it can also display pictures and be connected to a television set. Its battery capacity is sufficient to listen to music for 15 hours or to display music slideshows for five hours.

Photos in JPEG , BMP , GIF , TIFF, and PNG image formats must be converted to a proprietary format and transferred using iTunes to display on iPod photo . However, iPod photo does not contain a camera. In terms of software, the iPod photo differs only slightly from the normal iPod. The screen has seven or eight lines and is colored. Although its appearance is similar to the normal white iPod, they differ slightly in their dimensions and weight. The 30 GB version is 4 millimeters thicker and eight grams heavier. The 60 GB version, on the other hand, is 5 millimeters thicker and 23 grams heavier than the normal white fourth-generation iPod. First the iPod photo was supplied in a 40 or 60 GB version, then the 40 was converted into a 30 GB model. On June 28, 2005, production of the iPod photo was discontinued.

On June 28, 2005, all iPod models were given a color screen and the iPod photo was integrated into the iPod line. The maximum battery life increased from twelve to 15 hours. The new models with color screens are sometimes a little heavier and thicker.

Fifth generation

Introduced on October 12, 2005 with 30 and 60 GB (replaced by 80 GB on September 12, 2006), it is also available in black for the first time in addition to the standard white. In contrast to its predecessor, it has a larger 2.5-inch screen (6.4 cm) with 320 × 240 pixels and is the first iPod to be able to play videos, which is why it is sometimes referred to as "iPod video". It supports the formats MPEG-4 and H.264; the specified battery life for video playback is two hours for 30 GB and three hours for 60 GB. With pure audio playback, a single charge lasts up to 20 hours. At 11 and 14 millimeters, the fifth generation is significantly flatter than the previous generation. It also has the new screen lock, world clock and stop watch functions. In September 2006 new models of the iPod were released (generation 5.5). These have a brighter, less bluish screen and new headphones. The 60 GB model has been replaced by an 80 GB model (the same size as the previous 60 GB model). Both models also have a search function. The battery life for video playback has been increased to six and a half hours for the 80 GB model, according to Apple.

For the previous fifth generation iPod models, there is new software in version 1.2, which means that you can now adjust the screen brightness and install games from the iTunes Store. In addition, now gapless playback ( gapless playback ) is possible. Furthermore, a bug has been removed, whereby the RDS identification of radio stations is now correctly displayed when using the iPod Radio Remote. In addition, scrolling through long lists of artists and titles has been simplified. Apple has made this simplified and accelerated search function available for older fifth generation models with a new software version. At the beginning of December 2006 Apple released a new version 1.2.1 with further bug fixes. The current software version for the fifth iPod generation is called 1.3.

Sixth generation (iPod classic)

The iPod 6G, now known as iPod classic , was introduced by Steve Jobs on September 5, 2007 at a special event called The Beat Goes On in San Francisco . It is available with a storage capacity of 80 or 160 GB in the colors silver and space gray. The battery life was extended in pure music mode to 30 hours for the 80 GB model and 40 hours for the 160 GB model. The bowl is made of metal and is slightly flattened on the sides. It is also possible to leaf through album covers in three dimensions , called Cover Flow . In the main menu, the display is now divided and shows the menu items on the left and various overlays such as music, video and extras on the right. With Generation 6.1 it was offered with 120 GB of storage space and has the Genius functionality, with which playlists can be created with “well-matched titles” (Apple statement: Songs that go great together ).

Generation 6.2, which was available since September 9, 2009, was only offered with 160 GB of storage space. Official sales of the iPod Classic ceased on September 9, 2014.

Technical information

Model generation Storage capacity Max. Battery life Weight Dimensions (H × W × D) Launch
1st generation 005 GB 10 h 185 g 102.6 x 61.8 x 19.9 mm 2001
010 GB
2nd generation 010 GB 10 h 185 g 102.6 x 61.8 x 18.3 mm 2002
020 GB 204 g 102.6 x 61.8 x 21.2 mm
3rd generation 010 GB 08 h 158 g 103.5 x 61.8 x 15.7 mm 2003
015 GB
020 GB
030 GB 176 g 103.5 x 61.8 x 18.7 mm
040 GB
4th generation 020 GB 12 h 158 g 104.0 × 61 × 14 mm 2004
040 GB 176 g 104.0 × 61 × 17 mm
020 GB with color 15 h 167 g 104.0 × 61 × 16 mm
030 GB with color 166 g 104.0 × 61 × 18 mm
060 GB with color 181 g 104.0 × 61 × 19 mm
5th generation 030 GB 14 h 136 g 103.5 × 61.8 × 11 mm 2005
060 GB 20 h 157 g 103.5 × 61.8 × 14 mm
5.5. generation 030 GB 14 h 136 g 103.5 × 61.8 × 11 mm 2006
080 GB 20 h 156 g 103.5 × 61.8 × 14 mm
6th generation 080 GB 30 h 140 g 103.5 x 61.8 x 10.5 mm 2007
160 GB 40 h 162 g 103.5 x 61.8 x 13.5 mm
6.1. generation 120 GB 36 h 140 g 103.5 x 61.8 x 10.5 mm 2008
6.2. generation 160 GB 36 h 140 g 103.5 x 61.8 x 10.5 mm 2009

iPod mini

The iPod mini was introduced in 2004 and was replaced by the iPod nano in the fall of 2005. The iPod mini is no longer sold today.

First generation

The device was launched in the United States in February 2004 and in all other countries on July 24, 2004. The iPod mini is a much smaller iPod, but it only contained a 4 GB hard drive. It was the first model to receive the ClickWheel, which combines the scroll wheel and buttons. The iPod mini came in five different colors: blue, pink, green, silver, and gold. As a battery life, Apple stated eight hours with medium volume and switched off screen lighting.

Second generation

On February 23, 2005, new models came onto the market. In addition to the 4 GB model, there was also a 6 GB model, the battery life was increased to up to 18 hours and the colors were now significantly stronger. However, the gold-colored model was omitted, leaving pink, blue, green and silver. The charger was no longer part of the scope of delivery and the iPod mini could only be charged using the included USB cable via the interface on the computer or a charger could be purchased as an accessory.

Technical information

Model generation image Storage capacity Max. Battery life Weight Dimensions (H × W × D) Launch
1st generation Green ipodmini 1stgen.jpg 4 GB 08 h 103 g 91 × ​​51 × 13 mm 2004
2nd generation Ipod mini 2gen silver.JPG 4 GB 18 h 103 g 91 × ​​51 × 13 mm 2005
6 GB

iPod nano

First generation

The iPod nano was introduced by Steve Jobs on September 7, 2005 at a special music event and replaced the iPod mini. It is available in three versions (1, 2 and 4 GB) and two colors (black and white) and, like the iPod shuffle, uses NAND flash memory . With dimensions of 90 × 40 × 6.9 mm, it is around 60 percent smaller than its predecessor, the iPod mini, and around two millimeters thinner than the iPod shuffle. Like the fifth generation iPod, the iPod nano has a color screen (1.5 instead of 2.5 inches), a ClickWheel and a function for displaying images. For the first time, the headphone connection is located on the lower edge of the device. The iPod nano was no longer compatible with most of the extensions that existed at the time (such as iTrip) because it no longer had an external power supply. Still, he had most of the functions of his big brother. A world clock , a screen lock, a stop watch and a lyrics display have been added. The new generation comes with the new Apple iPod headphones. In contrast to the first to fourth generation iPod, the iPod nano can only be filled with data via USB; only the battery can be charged via FireWire . The battery life is, according to Apple, up to 14 hours. However, over time the battery life will decrease significantly. It is therefore advisable to switch off the screen lighting, as this significantly reduces the stress on the battery and thus enables longer operating times.

Quality problems were noticeable with some of the devices that were shipped, especially the black version was very sensitive to scratches. Apple compensated for the damage if it was caused by the manufacturing defect. Only one percent of the entire nano production was affected and error-free devices were available for the later batches . As with the iPod video edition, newer devices now come with a protective cover made of fabric to prevent scratches. The sound quality, especially in the bass range, had improved compared to the iPod. On November 11, 2011, Apple launched a recall for the first generation iPod nano devices. There had been indications of overheated batteries in this range of products. Customers with affected devices can fill out a form online with which the serial number of the device is checked. Defective devices are replaced by Apple within six weeks, including a 90-day warranty. Devices with a personal engraving are replaced by non-personalized standard products.

Second generation

The second generation of the iPod nano was presented by Steve Jobs on September 12, 2006 at a special event. The design of the successor model was reminiscent of the iPod mini with its anodized housing available in different colors . However, not all colors are available for all memory sizes; the 2 GB version was offered in silver, the 4 GB version in green, pink, orange, blue and silver, and the 8 GB version in black. In October 2006 the series was supplemented by a 4 GB special model and an 8 GB special model “iPod nano Product Red”. Compared to the first generation, the second generation iPod nano, according to Apple, has a screen that is up to 40% brighter and weighs 40 grams with a size of 90 × 40 × 6.5 mm, making it a little flatter and lighter than the iPod Previous version. This results in a volume of 23.4 cm³. In addition, according to Apple, the battery life has been increased by ten hours and is now 24 hours. The connections on the underside of the second generation iPod nano have been changed so that some accessories from the previous generation, such as lanyard headphones, docking station or wristband, cannot be used here. The new version of iPod nano required version 7 of iTunes. Older versions (for example iTunes version 6) were no longer compatible.

Third generation

The third generation of the iPod nano was introduced by Steve Jobs on September 5, 2007 at the same event as the iPod classic and the iPod touch. The most striking feature was the two-inch screen with LED backlight and QVGA resolution (320 × 240 pixels). The iPod nano could now also play videos and also mastered Cover Flow . In the main menu, the display is divided, overall the iPod nano 3G is reminiscent of the iPod classic, even if it was still made of anodized aluminum in different colors. There were two storage variants: On the one hand the silver-gray 4 GB model and on the other hand an 8 GB model, which was also available in blue, red (Product Red), green, black and, since January 21, 2008, also in pink. Compared to its predecessor, the device was shorter and slightly thinner, but wider (69.8 × 52.3 × 6.5 mm). This resulted in a volume of 23.73 cm³ and a weight of 49.2 grams. According to Apple, one charge was enough for 24 hours of music or five hours of video playback.

Fourth generation

The fourth-generation iPod nano was available since September 9, 2008 with a storage capacity of 4 or 8 GB and, unlike its predecessor, with 16 GB in nine different colors (silver, black, purple, blue, green, yellow, orange, red and Pink) available. Like the iPod touch, it now has an accelerometer. For example, when the device is shaken, it starts random playback (Shake to Shuffle) and automatically changes the format from portrait to landscape using a position sensor if the device is held accordingly. Another new feature is the so-called “Genius Playlist”, which automatically plays matching pieces of music. It was now also possible to change the font size in the menus. It was also the first ipod to offer the option of using a kind of audio guide. The menu information and information about the current piece of music are announced to the user. The speech synthesis is generated on the computer. The user therefore has a large selection of speech outputs. In Windows, for example, the Speech API is used. iTunes synchronizes the information in the media library with the audio guide so that there is always the possibility of finding out information about the piece of music, the podcast, the video or the picture. With a weight of 36.8 grams, the battery life is up to four hours for video playback and up to 24 hours for music only, according to the manufacturer. This iPod Nano uses a Samsung S5L8720 - SoC .

Shortly after the publication in September 2008, devices with 4 GB of storage capacity appeared at various specialist dealers (but not in Apple stores or Apple online stores), which were available in all the usual colors except for red. A short time later, Apple officially confirmed the 4GB models and stated that they were available in limited editions in some markets. Apple remains silent as to whether these devices may have come from a faulty production or were originally intended for the markets in developing countries. In December 2008, Stiftung Warentest tested 20 mobile multimedia players and the iPod nano received an overall grade of 2.5, placing it second behind the Sony NWZ-A828 (grade 2.2).

Fifth generation

On September 9, 2009, Apple unveiled the fifth generation iPod nano at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts . He had a video camera , an FM radio, a microphone , a loudspeaker , a step counter and was prepared for a heart rate monitor. The display has a diagonal of 2.2 inches. Its surface is made of polished aluminum, but it doesn't look very different from the fourth-generation iPod nano. It is available with 8 and 16 GB in the colors silver, black, purple, blue, green, orange and pink - in the Apple Store also in yellow and red (Product Red).

Sixth generation

On September 1, 2010, the sixth generation iPod nano was introduced. Compared to the previous generation, it has been reduced to 37.5 mm × 40.9 mm, but thicker, as there was a large clamp borrowed from the iPod shuffle on the back. It was possible to reduce the footprint by using a touchscreen display with a 3.91 cm (1.54 inch) screen diagonal and a resolution of 240 × 240 pixels, which took up the entire footprint. The control elements such as the Clickwheel were thus omitted except for three buttons on the long side. The camera, video playback function and loudspeaker introduced in the previous generation were also omitted. As with the fourth generation iPod, the surface was made of anodized aluminum . It was available in seven colors (silver, gray, blue, green, orange and pink, as well as exclusively in red as Product Red in the Apple online shop). The hardware remained essentially unchanged until the introduction of the seventh generation. On February 28, 2011, a firmware update (version 1.1) was released for this generation of iPod nano, which contained some minor changes to the operation. Another update (version 1.2) was presented on October 4, 2011 as part of Apple's Let's Talk iPhone event. It included major changes to the user interface, new watch designs, and more fitness functions that show the most recent activities in categories.

Seventh generation

Seventh generation of iPod nanos

With a depth of 5.4 mm and a 2.5 ″ multi-touch display, the modified form in the seventh generation was announced on September 12, 2012. In addition to new colors (light shades of graphite, silver, violet, pink, yellow, green, blue and a special red variant), the new Lightning connection and the integrated radio antenna, a Bluetooth 4.0 module is also installed for wireless connection for the first time to build accessories, speakers and headphones. This iPod will initially only be available in 16 GB capacity and contains the new EarPod headphones. During development, Apple said it scanned hundreds of ears to improve the comfort of the EarPods. According to Apple, the development time was three years. On September 10, 2013, the graphite color known from the iPhone 5 was replaced by the new space gray color known from the iPhone 5s, iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. On March 9, 2015, the price was increased from 169 to 179 euros (in Austria it costs 189 euros due to the higher VAT, in Switzerland 179  francs ). In August 2015, the color palette was renewed and now shows stronger colors and a delicate golden variant. IPod nano was discontinued on July 27, 2017.

Technical information

Model generation image Storage capacity Max. Battery life Weight Dimensions (H × W × D) Color display size
1st generation 01 GB 14 h audio 42 g 90 × 40 × 6.9 mm 3.81 cm (1.5 in)
176 × 132 pixels
32 MB 2005
02 GB
04 GB
2nd generation
2G iPod nano.jpg
02 GB 24 h audio 40 g 90 × 40 × 6.5 mm 3.81 cm (1.5 in)
176 × 132 pixels
32 MB 2006
04 GB
08 GB
3rd generation
3G iPod nano UI.jpg
04 GB 24 h audio
05 h video
49.2 g 69.8 x 52.3 x 6.5 mm 5.08 cm (2 inches)
320 × 240 pixels
32 MB 2007
08 GB
4th generation
IPod Nano 4G black.jpg
04 GB 24 h audio
04 h video
36.8 g 90.7 x 38.7 x 6.2 mm 5.08 cm (2 inches)
240 × 320 pixels
32 MB 2008
08 GB
16 GB
5th generation Ipod nano 5G.png 08 GB 24 h audio
05 h video
36.3 g 91.4 x 38.1 x 6.1 mm 5.59 cm (2.2 in)
240 × 376 pixels
64 MB 2009
16 GB
6th generation
6G IPod Nano.svg
08 GB 24 h audio 21.1 g 37.5 x 40.9 x 8.78 mm 3.91 cm (1.54 in)
240 × 240 pixels
64 MB 2010
16 GB
7th generation
7th generation iPod Nano.svg
016 GB 30 h audio, 3.5 h video 31.0 g 76.5 x 39.6 x 5.4 mm 6.35 cm (2.5 in)
240 × 432 pixels (202 ppi)
64 MB 2012

iPod shuffle

First generation

The iPod shuffle (from English to shuffle = '[cards] to mix') was introduced on January 11, 2005 and updated in September 2006. It has a glossy white plastic housing and instead of a hard drive it has a flash- based memory of 512 MB or 1024 MB (1 GB). IPod shuffle has no display . In addition to its function as a music player, it can also be used as a normal USB data stick . The USB connection is used to charge and the music or files are copied. On the back is a switch that operates iPod shuffle. It can be set in three positions:

  1. Switched off.
  2. Play all pieces in a fixed order.
  3. Play the pieces in random order.

There is a battery indicator under the switch: After pressing a button, the illuminated color in a traffic light system shows the charge status of the integrated battery:

Green: good state of charge
Yellow: moderate charge level
Red: bad state of charge or battery discharged.

Via iTunes, you can choose to play random tracks or copy a specific playlist to the iPod.

Second generation

On September 12, 2006, the second generation iPod shuffle was introduced by Steve Jobs. IPod shuffle was launched on September 5, 2007, with color changes to match those of the third generation iPod nano. For the first time, the smallest model in the iPod range also has a Product Red series . Since February 19, 2008, the iPod shuffle has been available in a 2 GB version in addition to the 1 GB model. On September 9, 2008, the available colors of the Shuffle were changed. The scope of delivery includes a small battery charging station that is connected to the iPod shuffle's headphone jack. On the opposite side there are two small switches that are used to switch on and off and to switch between the functions "Shuffle" and "Play in sequence". The iPod shuffle can be attached almost anywhere with an integrated, stable clip. In contrast to its predecessor, its exterior is made of anodized aluminum . With dimensions of 27.3 × 41.2 × 10.5 mm (about the size of the Apple Radio Remote, but a little thicker) and a weight of 15 grams, the model is smaller and lighter than its predecessor and, according to Apple, was considered to be currently the smallest audio player worldwide.

Third generation

On March 11, 2009, the third generation iPod shuffle was introduced. This is available with either 2 or 4 GB of memory. It can only be controlled with the supplied headphone remote control. Since September 9, 2009, the iPod shuffle has been available in blue, green and pink as well as in black and silver, as well as in a 2 GB version. There is also a special edition made of polished stainless steel ; this has 4 GB of storage capacity and is only available in the Apple Store . Another new feature of the third-generation models is a functionality called VoiceOver , which, at the push of a button on the headphone remote control, names the artist currently being played, the title and the playlist. The speech synthesis takes place on the computer, not on the iPod. The announcements are generated in the desired language as AAC files and copied to the iPod during synchronization. When it was first introduced, the feature was available in 14 languages. The voice used is female on Windows and Mac OS X Tiger and male on Mac OS X Leopard .

Fourth generation

On September 1, 2010, the fourth generation iPod shuffle was introduced. This is available with 2 GB of memory and is available in the colors silver, blue, green, yellow and pink. It can now be controlled again using buttons on the case, but still has no display. This is to be compensated with the VoiceOver function, which announces the current title and its artist in 29 languages, warns of a critical charge level or gives playlists. As of September 12, 2012, only the colors of iPod shuffle were updated. On September 10, 2013, the graphite color known from the iPhone 5 was replaced by the new space gray color known from the iPhone 5s, iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. On March 9, 2015, the price in Germany was increased from 49 to 55 euros (in Austria it costs 59 euros due to the higher VAT, in Switzerland 59  francs ). In August 2015 the colors of the shuffle were renewed. They are now stronger and correspond to those of the iPod Nano, which was updated at the same time. On July 27, 2017, iPod shuffle and iPod nano were retired.

Technical information

Model generation image Storage capacity Max. Battery life Weight Dimensions (H × W × D) Launch
1st generation
IPod shuffle 1G.png
512 MB 12 h 22 g 84 × 25 × 8.4 mm 2005
001 GB
2nd generation
Shuffle 2G iPod.svg
001 GB 12 h 15.6 g 27.3 x 41.2 x 10.5 mm 2006
002 GB
3rd generation
IPod shuffle 3G.png
002 GB 10 h 10.7 g 45.2 x 17.5 x 7.8 mm 2009
004 GB
4th generation
IPod shuffle 4G silver.jpg
002 GB 15 h 12.5 g 29.0 x 31.6 x 8.7 mm 2010

From the 2nd generation onwards, iPod shuffles are connected to the computer or the iTunes software with a special cable, four-pole 3.5 mm mini-jack on USB. The cables for the 3rd and 4th generation, although they are mechanically compatible, cannot be used with the 2nd generation iPod shuffles.

iPod touch

First generation

On September 5, 2007, Apple introduced the iPod touch at a special event at the Moscone Center in San Francisco . The device is based on the technology of the iPhone and is operated via a multi-touch screen. As with the iPhone, this takes up a large part of the surface of the top of the case and has a resolution of 480 × 320  pixels . The case is very similar to that of the iPhone, but is significantly flatter. The device is the first iPod to have WiFi . The iPod Dock Connector for a cable connection is also available. The components used are largely the same as those of the iPhone, with the exception of the phone and camera functions, Bluetooth and some software components.

Second generation

On September 9, 2008, the second generation of the iPod touch was presented at the Apple Special Event Let's Rock in San Francisco. The design has been slightly revised and is similar to the iPhone 3G. The back is now slightly curved, and there was also an integrated loudspeaker and a volume control on the left. Compared to the first-generation iPod touch, the new device is 0.5 mm thicker, but it looks much flatter because it has been rounded on the sides. A technical innovation is an integrated receiver for the Nike + iPod system. All you have to do now is buy the sensor chip and not the entire Nike + Sport Kit . In addition, the battery life has been increased from 22 to 36 hours for music playback and from five to six hours for videos. In addition, the processor clock frequency has been increased from 412 MHz to 532 MHz. The installed firmware brings various new features and bug fixes with it and is also available free of charge for the first generation iPod touch if 2.x firmware is already installed. The AppStore , which has been included since firmware 2.0 and is used to load new programs and games onto the iPod touch, is also included. The devices are offered with 8, 16, 32 GB. The iPod, the headphones and the USB cable are made without PVC and brominated flame retardants . On January 18th, 2009 the members of the iPhone Dev Team succeeded in jailbreaking the iPod touch 2G for the first time .

In the spring of 2009, software version 3.0 was offered for the iPod touch. This is based on the software of the iPhone 3G. The new software update makes it possible to establish a Bluetooth connection with a 2nd generation iPod touch. The chip required for this was built into these devices from the start. This allows, among other things, the use of stereo Bluetooth headphones. The new firmware also introduces a system-wide cut, copy and paste function and the Spotlight search. Unlike the iPhone, the update wasn't free for a while. These features were also possible with the iPhone OS 2.2.1, but you had to jailbreak it .

Third generation (upgrade 2009)

On September 9, 2009, a technically slightly modified, but externally unchanged iPod touch was presented. It was marketed by Apple as "iPod touch late 2009". Colloquially , it was called "iPod touch 3G" because it was the third iPod touch ever released. When introducing the iPhone OS 4.0, Apple used the name “iPod touch 3rd generation (late 2009)”. For the devices with 32 and 64 GB there was a newer processor (ARM Cortex A8 833 MHz, clocked at 633 MHz) and twice as much memory (256 MB RAM). The 16 GB model was omitted. The version with 8 GB was not changed and technically corresponded to the iPod touch 2G. The iPod touch now also had voice control and the voice-over feature . The battery life was reduced to 30 hours when playing music. Significant innovations came with the new software version 3.1, which was also available for all previous iPod touches, but only developed its full functionality on the "Late 09" version. The iPod touch was advertised by Apple as a "mobile game console " through TV spots and on its own website .

Fourth generation

The fourth generation was introduced on September 1, 2010 at the Apple Special Event in San Francisco. It has a retina display with a resolution of 960 × 640 pixels, a WLAN function with Draft-N support, a high-resolution camera on the back that also records HD videos , a second camera on the front with VGA - Resolution as well as a microphone. The cameras do not have autofocus, the focus is static. At 7.2 millimeters, the iPod touch 4G is almost 1½ millimeters thinner than its predecessor, and its back is made entirely of stainless steel . While the storage space has remained the same as the previous model, the hardware uses the more powerful Apple A4 processor and a gyroscope (3-axis gyro sensor) for more gaming options. Thanks to the cameras, the iPod touch now supports FaceTime , whereby the email address of the user is used to call instead of a phone number. FaceTime calls can be made to other fourth generation iPod touch devices, the iPhone 4, and an Apple computer with FaceTime software installed. However, both interlocutors must be online for this. According to Apple, the battery should last up to 40 hours for music playback and up to seven hours for video playback. On October 4, 2011, an updated version of the iPod touch was unveiled. The only difference to the previous version is the now also available color variation in white.

Fifth generation

The fifth generation was introduced in San Francisco on September 12, 2012. It has a larger retina display, a high-resolution camera (iSight) on the back that records Full HD videos and photos with 5 megapixels (2592 × 1936 pixels), a second camera on the front and a microphone. The new iPod touch also has a flash for taking photos for the first time. At 6.1 millimeters, the iPod touch is 1.1 millimeters thinner than its predecessor. The more powerful ARM Cortex A9 in the Apple A5 SoC is used in the hardware. According to Apple, the battery should last up to 40 hours for music playback and up to eight hours for video playback. The iPod touch is available in anodized aluminum in the colors pink, yellow, blue, white and black as well as in a red Product Red special edition, in which Apple donates part of the proceeds to the Global Found to fight AIDS in Africa. Another special feature is the iPod touch loop, where a wrist strap can be attached to the back of the iPod touch. The device is the first iPod touch on which the Siri voice control is installed and which does not contain an ambient light sensor for automatic screen brightness adjustment. Phil Schiller, Apple's manager and marketing vice-president, responded to a request that there was no room for an ambient light sensor due to the small thickness. The iPod touch supports WLAN 802.11 a / b / g / n and Bluetooth 4.0. Apple's mobile operating system iOS 6 runs on the multimedia player. Versions with 32 GB and 64 GB internal memory are available. IOS 6 on the iPod touch 5G inherently offers features such as Siri , AirPlay , iMessage , FaceTime , Facebook and Twitter integration. On May 30, 2013, a variant with 16 GB memory was released. With this device, however, the user has to do without the rear camera and the loop. At the same time, sales of the fourth generation were finally stopped.

Sixth generation

The sixth generation was released on July 15, 2015. It looks like the fifth generation, now has the Apple A8 SoC and does not have a camera loop. The new camera has a resolution of 8 megapixels and an optional slow motion function for filming. As with the iPod nano and iPod shuffle, the colors have been updated to match those of the iPhone 6 : silver, gold and "space gray" as well as the new colors dark blue and pink. There is also a Product Red special edition again. A 128 GB version was also introduced for an extra charge of 110 euros compared to the 64 GB version. The prices of the other versions correspond to those of the predecessor.

After the rest of the iPods were discontinued on July 27, 2017, the prices of the iPod touch were lowered. The versions with 16 and 64 GB were no longer sold. The 32 GB version costs 229 euros, the 128 GB iPod touch from now on 339 euros.

Seventh generation

The seventh generation was released on May 29, 2019. There are no external changes to the sixth generation. The main change is the use of the A10 Fusion chip, which was also used on the iPhone 7 . The use of the chip also enables the availability of group Facetime calls, which were introduced on iPhones with iOS 12.1. The memory sizes 32 GB, 128 GB and 256 GB are available. The colors correspond to those of the sixth generation (silver, gold, space gray, blue and pink and "Product Red").

Technical information

Model generation image Storage capacity Max. Battery life Weight Dimensions (H × W × D) Screen size /
speaker Bluetooth camera microphone random access memory CPU clock Device colors Launch
1st generation IPod touch (aka) .jpg 08 GB 22 h audio
05 h video
120 g 110 × 61.8 × 8 mm 3.5 inches
480 × 320 pixels
163 ppi
No No No No 128 MB 412  MHz black 2007
16 GB
32 GB
2nd generation IPod touch 2G.png 08 GB 36 h audio
06 h video
115 g 110 x 61.8 x 8.5 mm 3.5 inches
480 × 320 pixels
163 ppi
Yes Yes No No 128 MB 532 MHz black 2008
16 GB
32 GB
3rd generation
IPod Touch (3G) .jpg
08 GB 30 h audio
05 h video
115 g 110 x 61.8 x 8.5 mm 3.5 inches
480 × 320 pixels
163 ppi
Yes Yes No No 256 MB 633 MHz black 2009
32 GB
64 GB
4th generation IPod touch 4G.png 08 GB 40 h audio
07 h video
101 g 111 x 58.9 x 7.2 mm 3.5 inches
960 × 640 pixels
326 ppi
Yes Yes Yes Yes 256 MB 776 MHz (
1 GHz at full load )
White (since October 12, 2011)
32 GB
64 GB
5th generation
5th generation iPod Touch.svg
16 GB 40 h audio
08 h video
088 g 123.4 x 58.6 x 6.1 mm 4.0 inches
1136 × 640 pixels
326 ppi
Yes Yes Yes Yes 512 MB 2 × 800 MHz Black, silver, blue, yellow, pink, red (= Product Red ) 2012
32 GB
64 GB
6th generation
5th generation iPod Touch.svg
16 GB 40 h audio
08 h video
088 g 123.4 x 58.6 x 6.1 mm 4.0 inches
1136 × 640 pixels
326 ppi
Yes Yes Yes Yes 1 GB 2 x 1.10 GHz Silver, Gold, Space Gray, Pink, Blue, Red (= Product Red ) 2015
32 GB
64 GB
128 GB
7th generation
5th generation iPod Touch.svg
32 GB 40 h audio
08 h video
088 g 123.4 x 58.6 x 6.1 mm 4.0 inches
1136 × 640 pixels
326 ppi
Yes Yes Yes Yes 1 GB 1.6 GHz Silver, Gold, Space Gray, Pink, Blue, Red (= Product Red ) 2019
128 GB
256 GB

HP iPod

Hewlett-Packard (HP) sold the iPod in its own product range since August 27, 2004. While the prototype was still in the typical HP gray, the final model hardly differed from the fourth-generation iPod. The only external difference was an HP logo on the back below the apple and the iPod lettering. The iPod was only sold in the USA under the name Apple iPod from HP . It was as expensive as the original at $ 299 and $ 399, respectively. What was interesting about this strategic partnership was that all HP desktop PCs and notebooks were preinstalled with iTunes for PC, which was good for the acceptance of this important software for Apple. At the end of July 2005, Mark Hurd , the new CEO of HP, terminated this agreement on the grounds that it no longer fit into the corporate strategy of HP.

iPod "Special Editions"


The iPod U2 Special Edition was released in October 2004. The first iPod special model is identical to the fourth generation iPod and contains 20 GB of memory. The normally white housing is black, the ClickWheel is blood red. The signatures of the four band members of U2 are engraved on the back . Since July 2005, the iPod U2 has also had the color screen that has become common on all other models. The iPod U2 was created as part of a partnership and joint marketing campaign between Apple, the U2 group and the Universal Music Group (UMG).

On October 12, 2005, it was discontinued in favor of the fifth generation black iPod. On June 6, 2006 Apple presented a new edition of the U2 edition. The special model has been updated to the fifth generation iPod with 30 GB of memory. On September 22nd, 2006 the U2 edition was adapted to the new generation 5.5 models and now also has a brighter screen, a search function and a higher video resolution on external devices.

Product Red

On October 13, 2006, the iPod nano Product Red was introduced by U2- Frontmann Bono and US talk show host Oprah Winfrey . For each device of this special edition sold, Apple will donate $ 10 to the HIV / AIDS relief foundation "Global Funds". The second generation iPod nano, which was presented on September 12, 2006, is also available as a Product Red Edition, as is the iPod shuffle for the first time. This color is currently only available for the iPod nano (7th generation), iPod touch (6th generation) and iPod shuffle (4th generation) in the Apple Online Store and in the Apple Store.

Harry Potter Edition

In the United States, Apple sold a 20 GB iPod with a color screen and an engraved Hogwarts emblem on the back on September 7, 2005 . This edition was launched at the start of the Harry Potter Audiobooks in iTunes. The iPod contained all six Harry Potter audiobooks published to date. In Austria this iPod was shipped with 30 GB (Harry Potter 30 GB Collector's iPod).

Unofficial "Special Editions"


The iPod has been extremely successful since its introduction in December 2001, particularly in the US digital music player market. In the fourth quarter of 2005, 14 million iPods were shipped, bringing the total number of devices sold to over 42 million. According to Apple, more than 60 million iPods had been sold worldwide by mid-September 2006, including ten million iPod shuffles. On April 9, 2007, Apple reported a total of 100 million iPods sold. By the third quarter of 2007, ten million more iPods had been sold. The iPod holds a large market share in the field of hard drive players, especially in the USA, despite the fact that players from other manufacturers sometimes offer lower prices, longer battery life and more functionality. As a rule, however, they lack software such as iTunes that manages music, videos, audio books and podcasts and automatically synchronizes them with the player. The user guidance of the iPod itself is often considered to be particularly simple and well thought-out. Another argument is the very large selection of matching accessories, which in many cases only work with the iPod. Competitors include the Zen and MuVo model series offered by Creative and the company's iriver players .


Griffin iTrip
iPod Camera Connector
Loudspeaker and docking station "Radial" from JBL with iPod Classic G 6.5

A separate branch of accessory manufacturers has developed around the iPod. The products offered range from standard accessories such cases to FM - transmitters (for example Griffin iTrip , Belkin Tunecast II ), with the help of iPod music wirelessly to FM -Radios transfer can (only allowed in Germany with CE marking and a transmission power up to a maximum of 50 nW). iPods since the third generation means allow additional hardware other functions such as the inclusion of clay material (as iTalk ), or provide further interfaces ready. For example, the iPod Camera Connector could be used to transfer photos from a digital camera to older iPod models.

Various providers (including Apple) have developed systems for integrating the iPod in hi-fi systems or "base stations" with speakers so that the iPod can also be used without headphones . In recent years, numerous car manufacturers have integrated adapters for connecting different iPod variants to the hi-fi / information systems in their vehicles. The iPod is operated using the corresponding buttons on the vehicle. In addition, many original car radios and those for subsequent installation with changer control can be retrofitted with an adapter that addresses the iPod like a CD changer; thus all functions can be controlled by the car radio.


iPod earphones (generation 5.5, 2006)

The earphones are known for their white color and design. They have become a trademark of the iPod and represent a recognition symbol. "The white earbuds show that you enjoy your music in style," says Apple's product description for the iPod shuffle. The cable is white-gray and is connected to the headphone socket of the iPod with an elongated jack plug (3.5 mm). The cable routing is on both sides. The wired headphones included with the iPod work with 18 mm drivers and have neodymium magnets as transducers. The frequency range extends from 20 to 20,000  Hz . The scope of delivery includes ear pads for the earphones. On all iPods with a dock connector, the earphones can also be expanded with a cable remote control, which includes all important control functions such as 'Play / Stop', fast forward and rewind, volume adjustment and 'Hold'. Pressing the 'Hold' button on the remote control has no effect on the 'Hold' button on the iPod and thus only locks the buttons on the remote control.

With the introduction of the iPod generation 5.5 (see above) and the second generation of the iPod nano on September 12, 2006, the design of the earphones was also changed slightly. They are kept in the same white and gray color combination as the previous model, but their shape has become a bit more rounded. With a slightly smaller diameter, they now also fit into smaller ear canals . In addition, the sound has been improved a bit, according to Apple. The technical specifications have stayed the same.

Since 2012 Apple has been selling "EarPods". According to Apple, these were developed over several years with the help of 3D scans of many ears so that they remain more stable in the ear than their predecessors. But since they have a uniform shape, they do not suit every user equally well. Other manufacturers solve this problem with rubber attachments. Earpods offer better sound than the previous model and include a microphone.

Nike + iPod

Nike + iPod

Nike + iPod is a training system for the iPod nano, iPod touch (from 2nd generation) and from the iPhone 3GS, which was developed by Apple in cooperation with Nike . It consists of a pedometer that is inserted into the sole of special Nike shoes and a receiver that is connected to the iPod. With the iPod touch, the receiver is integrated into the device. The sensor part contains a piezo sensor and a transmitter that transmits the data to the receiver via radio. The training data is displayed on the iPod screen and can also be announced via the headphones at the touch of a button. There is also the option of setting the desired route length, training duration or the desired energy expenditure before training. In this case, the training data is announced regularly (for example after every kilometer). After training, the user can also view and evaluate his training data on the computer. Users of the Nike + iPod Sport Kit can upload their training data, compare them to other athletes and take part in competitions on the Nikeplus website.

The sales strategy is often criticized: the batteries in the sensor cannot be replaced. If these are discharged, a complete new sports kit must be purchased. Many athletes react angrily to this, especially since the batteries are not particularly long-lasting and endurance athletes in particular would have to buy a new device several times a year. With the introduction of the new iPod touch, Apple has added the sensor to its range separately. The separate application Nike + for iPhone and iPod, which does not require a separate sensor, has been available in the App Store since 2011 . Instead, the running distance and speed are recorded via the GPS receiver . To mark the anniversary of the collaboration between Nike and Apple, the app was temporarily offered free of charge.

Made for iPod

Official Mfi logo that accessory manufacturers are allowed to print on licensed products

In 2005, Apple introduced the Made for iPod (Mfi) program to help customers find products that are guaranteed to work with their iPod. Participation in this program is mandatory for accessory manufacturers who use the dock connector on the iPod. Apple initially demanded license fees of up to ten percent of sales with these accessories, in 2006 Apple changed the conditions and now requires a fixed amount of 4 US dollars per accessory sold. In return, the licensees receive a complete developer documentation, which has grown to several hundred pages over the years, in addition to the pin assignment that has meanwhile been disclosed by third parties on the network, etc. a. Description of the control via the dock connection, as well as detailed specifications, how a connected accessory part has to behave in relation to the iPod (e.g. power consumption, commands that the accessory has to send when an external power supply is disconnected). Some functions of the dock connection - such as video output or serial communication - have only been available since autumn 2007 through the use of a special chip, the so-called authentication coprocessor. This chip specially developed by / for Apple is only available to Mfi licensees.

With the introduction of the iPhone 5 in September 2012, the dock connector was replaced by the Lightning connector. In the future, iPhones, iPads and iPods will have the much smaller, eight-pin connector that can be plugged in on both sides. By default, this connector only supplies digital, no analog signals (such as composite video or line out audio). In addition, every plug is factory-fitted with an authentication chip, which, according to Apple, should make it impossible to use unlicensed accessories.



In the design of all iPod models, there is no provision for the user to change the built-in internal batteries . Batteries from other manufacturers are available depending on the design (iPod, iPod mini). Installation by the user is possible with sufficient manual skills. Apple offers an exchange service outside of the warranty period, but this is more expensive than installation by the user or by some third-party providers. With the newer small iPods (shuffle, nano), the great integration density of the components and the execution of the internal cabling do not allow the battery to be changed without soldering. The US Securities and Exchange Commission confirmed that Apple had filed several class actions against the company in 2003. The plaintiffs saw the short battery life and the lack of replacement service for the iPod batteries as a breach of warranty and unfair competition. In the documentary Buy for the Garbage Dump , the iPod battery is even mentioned as an example of planned obsolescence .

Software and data transmission

To use the iPod, you need the iTunes software , which is no longer supplied on CD-ROM . Customers without internet access cannot put the iPod into operation immediately. As the background to this decision, Apple cites the fact that the Internet and computers will soon be available everywhere and that doing without them will save important resources, since only a few users are dependent on the CD-ROM. The latest generation of iPods uses a checksum in its database, which initially ruled out the devices being loaded with unsupported software. Other software is often preferred by users because it works even better than iTunes on weaker computers in addition to other applications, and because iTunes as a music management software is sometimes rejected by technically savvy users in particular. Under Linux, these alternatives are even the only way to supply the iPod with music. It is believed that Apple intends to force the use of iTunes; The DRM used can only be guaranteed in this way. It is also possible that the checksum from the iTunes WiFi Store, which was introduced almost at the same time , is required for the iPod touch and the iPhone in order to guarantee the consistency of the database. However, this checksum was hacked within a few days so that, for example , the latest version of libgpod can communicate with the iPod again as usual.

Format support

Although the technology of the iPod is basically capable of playing a wide variety of audio formats, Apple has mainly limited itself to the MP3 and its further development, the AAC format . Importing a WMA file to iTunes is only possible through conversion. Users who prefer other audio formats (such as the open Ogg Vorbis ) must first convert the files to a compatible format using third-party programs. In order to play formats on the iPod without prior conversion, you have to use alternative operating systems ( e.g. Rockbox ). Music that is purchased online is often protected with DRM copy protection. The in-house iTunes Store is required to use purchased music on the iPod. DRM-protected music from providers such as Musicload cannot be played on the iPod because they use the competing format WMA with DRM.

Surfaces and processing

The materials and the workmanship of the case have come under fire because touching the controls and especially the high-gloss back leave fingerprint marks that can only be prevented by a protective cover that can be purchased separately. The shiny metal backs of many models and the plastic front of the first-generation iPod nano are also very prone to scratches. Exceptions are the iPod minis, which are no longer available today, the second generation iPod nanos, which have been available since September 2006, as well as the fourth generation iPod nano models, as their surfaces are made entirely of aluminum.

operating system

Pixo OS

Similar to the hardware, Apple also bought the operating system software for the iPod and adapted it to its own needs. In the first generation, the player was based on software called Pixo OS in version 2.1, which was specially produced for MP3 players by the company of the same name, Pixo. Some former Apple employees were employed by Pixo, which may have made the business connection easier. Because of some differences between Pixo and Apple, the development of the software was supposedly bought up by Apple along with the employees who worked on it. As of the second generation, "Pixo OS" is no longer listed separately in the "About" menu. Pixo has since been bought by Sun Microsystems and focuses on the development of Java applications.


With the introduction of the third generation iPods, Apple switched to a real-time operating system called RTXC from the Texan company Quadros. Version 3.2 of this OS has been adapted by Apple to the hardware and design. Because it can be used on various microprocessors and DSP chips, RTXC can also be easily adapted to future devices, especially since future expansions can be easily developed with the support of multitasking . Apple marked the change with a version change to 2.x.


With the introduction of the iPhone with integrated iPod functions, the iPhone OS was introduced, which was renamed iOS with version 4 . It is based on Mac OS X and is the standard operating system for the Apple products iPhone, iPod touch, iPad and Apple TV (from Apple TV 2). At the presentation of the iPhone, Steve Jobs announced, among other things, that the conversion of further or even all future iPods to OS X was planned.

Alternative operating systems

Linux on the iPod

Several ambitious programmers have set themselves the goal of creating executable alternatives to the original Apple operating system. Often existing problems and restrictions are circumvented in this way at your own risk. This includes the lack of support for certain audio formats or the lack of cross-fading between pieces of music. In addition to the “iPod Linux” developed for the iPod, there is the Rockbox project, which was initially developed for other music players. The Android port “iDroid” can also be installed on the iPod touch.

iPod Linux

iPodLinux is a Linux -based system for the iPod. Not all generations and models are currently officially supported by iPodLinux. First to third generation iPods are supported. However, the system potentially runs on all iPods, except for the iPod shuffle, the iPod Classic (6th generation) and the iPod nano from the second generation, because of the encrypted firmware , for which support is not planned. The Linux operating system is still in development for the other models, but it can already be installed. The new features include the display of pictures and videos on the iPod. The number of games has also been expanded to include Tetris and Space Invaders , for example . Two of the interessantesten achievements are probably the GameBoy - emulator that makes it possible to play Game Boy games on the iPod, and a port of the classic Doom . The support for the Ogg Vorbis format and various MOD formats are almost complete. In addition, an improved recording function is available under Linux, which produces a much better quality with 96 kHz sampling rate than the Apple firmware with only 8 kHz.


Rockbox on an iPod nano

Rockbox was originally developed for the " Archos Jukebox" because some dissatisfied users wanted to make better use of their hardware. After the independent firmware had also been ported to the iRiver, the developers introduced rudimentary support for many iPod models on January 28, 2006. In contrast to iPodLinux, the software does not support the iPod database, but can generate its own. This database was originally limited to a maximum of 10,000 files, but this limit has now been lifted. Folder navigation is also possible. Support for the iPod database is not planned. However, there are various programs that can manage iTunes databases. In contrast to the original firmware of the iPod, with the alternative software it is now also possible to play Ogg Vorbis , FLAC , Musepack , MP2 and WAV files. In addition, seamless playback is supported.

Alternative archiving software

In addition to Apple's iTunes software, programs from other providers also allow the management of music and data on the iPod, including the open source programs ipod-sharp and gtkpod, which is based on the platform-independent GTK2 library. Both programs thus also offer Unix and GNU / Linux users a way to use the iPod. The libgpod program library, which has been outsourced from gtkpod, is used by several other programs such as the audio players Amarok and Exaile . The audio player Banshee , on the other hand, uses ipod-sharp. There was a new version of libgpod for the two newest iPods, which can also be used to play the player under Linux.

Another solution are the freeware programs YamiPod, Floola and SharePod. This makes it possible to manage, play and transfer music to the iPod, as well as transferring music from the iPod to another storage medium. The tools do not have to be installed for this, so that they can be used immediately on any computer, even directly from the iPod. In contrast to YamiPod, Floola even offers album artwork support; Each song and album on the iPod can be assigned covers that the iPod displays when it is played. The Windows MP3 player Winamp and the MediaMonkey music library are further alternatives . With the “ml ipod” plug-in, Winamp can now also run smoothly with the current ipod classic and nano models up to the fourth generation. MediaMonkey can even be used with iPod touch and iPhone. What is interesting about these programs is the possibility of creating a "query" (database query) to transfer certain titles and the creation and synchronization of so-called "Smart Playlists" (Winamp) or "Auto Playlist". The transfer of photos and videos is also implemented in Winamp. MediaMonkey offers many possibilities to edit MP3 tags automatically, so missing tags and album images can be queried not only via CDDB, but also via amazon.de.


The central processor of the iPod is manufactured by PortalPlayer , who also created the reference design for the portable MP3 player that became the iPod after Apple's entry. PortalPlayer was also involved in the development of the user interface for the iPod, which Pixo was involved in.

iPod, iPod photo, iPod mini, and iPod nano

Inner workings of an iPod, 3rd generation
  • Dual-core ARM processor (90 MHz [1st to 3rd generation] or 80 MHz [from 4th generation] from PortalPlayer Inc.)
  • Frequency range: 20 Hz to 20,000 Hz
  • 1.8- inch hard drive with 20, 30, 60, 80, 120 or 160 GB (iPod, iPod U2 and iPod photo); One-inch hard drive from Hitachi with 4 or 6 GB (iPod mini) and 1, 2, 4 or 8 GB flash memory from Samsung (iPod nano), 2, 4 or 8 GB flash memory (iPod nano 2nd generation)
  • Built -in lithium-ion battery
  • 2-inch color liquid crystal screen with 220 × 176  pixels (1.67-inch for iPod mini, 138 × 110 pixels, monochrome) and backlight
  • 2.5-inch color liquid crystal screen with 320 × 240 pixels (iPod video)
  • Controls: Depending on the series, touch-sensitive scroll wheel or mechanical scroll buttons, mechanical hold button on the top
  • Headphone output (iPod photo: combined audio and TV output)
  • Connection for remote control (from the third generation with a separate connection; first and second generation have the connection around the headphone jack)
  • Dock connection system (from the third generation)
  • FireWire - interface for data transfer and charging the batteries (data transmission only to the fifth generation possible)
  • USB 2.0 interface for data transfer and for charging the battery
  • Housing back made of stainless steel and front made of polyamide (iPod, U2 iPod and iPod photo) or anodized aluminum (iPod mini and iPod nano from September 2006)

iPod shuffle 2nd generation

  • Samsung processor
  • Frequency range: 20 to 20,000 Hz
  • 1 and 2 GB of flash memory from Samsung
  • Built -in lithium-ion battery
  • Controls on the front: mechanical buttons for play / pause, volume and forward / back; on the back: slider for random playback and normal order, battery status button
  • Two light-emitting diodes on the two middle sides provide information about the status of the iPod.
  • The headphone output is used as a headphone connection and as a USB  2.0 output for the supplied dock for data transfer and for charging the battery.


Front and back of an "Ei-Pott" from the company koziol with the label from Ernst & Young . On the back you can see the "Pott", which was made unrecognizable after the trademark dispute.
  • The pronunciation of the device led some users to the parodic term "egg pot". This is to be assessed as a colloquial joke. Apple went to court to protect the name of “iPod” and sued the company koziol for an egg cup by designer Michael Neubauer. The Erbach-based company previously sold this under the name "eiPOTT". In August 2010, the Hanseatic Higher Regional Court in Hamburg recognized the likelihood of confusion between the name “eiPott” and the media player made by Apple. According to information from koziol , Apple had tried in vain to have the production of the egg cup generally prohibited and the sale of the egg cup at the second attempt.


  • Daniel Mandl: iLife '05 for the Mac. Digital photos and music, making movies, DVDs and songs. SmartBooks 2005, ISBN 3-908497-18-3 (with information on iPod and iTunes).
  • Yasukuni Notomi: iPod - the book for the cult player. O'Reilly, 2005, ISBN 3-89721-401-6 .
  • JD Bierstorfer: iPod Shuffle Fan Book. O'Reilly, 2005, ISBN 0-596-10070-1 (English).
  • Gerald Erdmann, Charlotte Stanek: iPod + iTunes. O'Reilly, 2007, ISBN 978-3-89721-475-0 .
  • Daniel Mandl, Michael Schwarz: iTunes 07 and iPod - iLife from Apple for mobile media enjoyment. Mandl & Schwarz-Verlag, Husum 2006, ISBN 3-939685-02-X .

Web links

Commons : iPod  - collection of pictures, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Summary Apple Special Event . on benm.at, September 1, 2010.
  2. Apple → Support → iPod nano Replacement Program , Apple Support Website.
  3. Apple: iPod nano - Features . at apple.com (English).
  4. zdnet.de
  5. The new Apple EarPods in the test . October 12, 2012.
  6. Up to 40 euros surcharge: Apple is raising iPod prices
  7. Apple Unveils the New iPod shuffle. ( February 29, 2008 memento on the Internet Archive ) on apple.com (English).
  8. Apple Introduces All New iPod nano. ( Memento of February 18, 2008 on the Internet Archive ) on apple.com (English).
  9. iPod shuffle Now Just $ 49. ( Memento of February 25, 2008 on the Internet Archive ) on apple.com (English).
  10. VoiceOver. Tells you what you want to hear . on apple.com.
  11. Up to 40 euros surcharge: Apple is raising iPod prices
  12. Can I use the 3rd generation usb cable to charge the 2nd generation shuffle? ( Memento of November 12, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) on apple.com (English).
  13. Apple: Colorful nanos, playful touch and iTunes 8 . at heise.de.
  14. Get a sneak peek into the future of iPhone OS . at apple.com ( English ).
  15. Four years after the last model: Apple announces the new iPod touch. Retrieved May 30, 2019 .
  16. Harry Potter Digital Audiobooks Debut Exclusively on iTunes Music Store. ( Memento from May 1, 2008 on the Internet Archive ) on apple.com (English).
  17. The digital Bach edition with iPod Classic . on bachpod.de.
  18. Macwelt: iPod-Xavier-Naidoo-Special-Edition. December 1, 2005, accessed April 22, 2014.
  19. iPod Camera Connector: Supported Devices . at support.apple.com ( English ).
  20. Nike + iPod Frequently Asked Questions (Technical) . at apple.com (English).
  21. Music and series on netzwelt.de.
  22. For running fans: Nike + for the iPhone is temporarily free
  23. iLounge: Made for iPod central information hub . January 30, 2005, accessed April 22, 2014.
  24. Report: Apple changes 'Made for iPod' fee . on ilounge.com (English).
  25. Lightning cable's authentication chip found to offer 'just enough' security on AppleInsider.com (English).
  26. Class lawsuits over iPod battery. In: golem.de. February 11, 2004, accessed February 26, 2011 .
  27. Buy a documentary by Cosima Dannoritzer for the garbage dump (French original title: fr: Prêt à jeter , English title: The Light Bulb Conspiracy ), ARTE documentary film, 75 minutes 2010. ( Online ( Memento from November 19, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) ).
  28. $ 22.5 million for scratched iPods . at heise.de.
  29. Steve Jobs on future Macs and iPods. ( Memento from September 27, 2007 in the Internet Archive ) on MacTechNews.de, August 17, 2007.
  30. Little-known startup was behind iPod's easy-to-use interface . on sfgate.com.
  31. Dieter Rams: Apple has achieved something I never did , The Telegraph, June 5, 2011.
  32. Everyone copies, Apple included. It's how you do it that matters , The Telegraph, April 21, 2011.
  33. Apple design: Learned suspiciously well from Braun ( Memento from June 18, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) . In: Chip , August 12, 2011.
  34. Ref .: 5 W 84/10.
  35. Apple obtains an injunction against egg cups . on heise.de, August 21, 2010, 5:43 pm, accessed on August 22, 2010.
This version was added to the list of articles worth reading on December 18, 2005 .