Who says Apple doesn't offer users a choice?

Apple has managed to simultaneously make it harder to choose and easier to up sell with new editions of iPod minis and photos, and new prices to go along with them. There is now an iPod at $50 increments from $99 to $349, with the high end, 60GB iPod photo topping out at $449. If you don’t have a clear idea of what you want in an iPod, it could be very hard to make up your mind.

If you want the best bang for your buck, go with the largest iPod photo. It will cost you only $7.48/GB of storage. On the other hand, if you want the least expensive iPod, grab a 512 MB shuffle (only $198/GB).

Want something small that you can hang around your neck? Either shuffle version will work. Or you can pay a bit more, expand your storage and still use a lanyard with one of the new minis.

While there is something for everyone, the dividing lines are no longer as clear as they may have been a couple of days ago…


I think Apple proved that people don’t care about “bang for your buck” with the advent of the original iPod. It had a drive capacity that wasn’t as good as other models, and it was more expensive.

So really, Apple has segregated the market into three. Yes, some people fit in more than one market, but we still have three.

The Shufflers… Those that want something to work out with. Something that won’t ever skip. Something that’s lighter and smaller than anything out there. These people also may want to cash in on the Apple caché at a low price point, but that’s a distant fourth reason.

The minis… I’ve found that this market is mostly women who view the iPod as a fashion accessory. They don’t care that capacity is limited, they just like the colours, and the smaller size (smaller than the normal iPod)

The “real” iPodders… These people want capacity, plain and simple. Some of them want the ability to show photos. Both the iPod and iPod photo are in this group.

The new line-up brings down the price of a colour-screen iPod so that even people without a fat wallet can enjoy a colour screen. The only reason Apple even has a 20GB iPod is to hit a “low end” price point. Expect the next low-end IPod to have a colour screen… for the same $299

Posted by: CM Harrington on February 24, 2005 03:32 PM

Spot on analysis—mine tends toward the tongue in cheek. Speaking of which, you’ve misspelled color…


Posted by: Mark Newhouse on February 24, 2005 03:45 PM

with regard to the tongue-in-cheek… I tend to be a bit dense on such things. I’ll try to do better next time ;-)

Posted by: CM Harrington on February 27, 2005 10:13 PM

That’s ok—my humor tends toward the dry and subtle, and I often err by being too subtle…

Posted by: Mark Newhouse on February 28, 2005 10:19 AM

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In which Mark riffs on Apple's new iPod offerings...

February 24, 2005 | Apple | iPod

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