Ten years ago today, Steve Jobs took the stage and introduced the first iPod.
The portable music player is seen as being largely responsible for ’s dramatic comeback over the past decade. It also led Apple down the path into the consumer electronics market. While the iPod has diminished in importance over the past few years, Apple’s bottom line is now dominated by devices such as the and .
Macworld provides a nice story detailing how the iPod came to be:
Behind every successful product lies a problem in search of a solution. The inspirational problem, in the iPod’s case, involved the pitiful state of the young MP3 player market in the late 1990s.
Portable MP3 players had been around since the mid 1990s, but Apple found that every one on the market offered a lackluster user experience. Steve Jobs had a strong term for gadgets like that: “crap”. Everyone at Apple agreed.
Initial reaction to the iPod wasn’t entirely favorable. Slashdot’s famous reaction was “No wireless. Less space than a nomad. Lame.”
Of course, ten years later, the iPod has sold over 304 million units.