The iPod — now there’s a name we’ve not heard in a long, long time. The music playing sensation that put Apple back on the map in 2001 helped popularize digital music, but the time comes for all good devices to be laid to rest. The iPod Classic has long since been retired, and now two more models are moving on to join it — the tiny iPod Nano and the tinier iPod Shuffle.
The iPod Nano and the iPod Shuffle have both been removed from Apple’s storefront, a move that Apple has confirmed signals they will no longer produce either. The Nano came out in 2005 as a more pocket-friendly alternative to the still pretty massive iPod Classic. It was joined that year by the Shuffle, a music player that lacked a display, establishing itself as a basic playlist player ideal for running or hitting the gym.
Smartphones have since made standalone mp3 players superfluous — while there’s still a smattering of interest, it appears there isn’t enough for Apple to justify continuing production of the Nano. With the rise of exercise-friendly wireless in-ear headphones and wearables, the Shuffle also became a tough sell over the years — the relatively small capacities didn’t help, either.
But, the iPod name isn’t dead just yet. Apple is still churning out the iPod Touch — essentially an iPhone without the phone. It’s probably no coincidence that that’s the only remaining iPod that can play Apple Music, Apple’s streaming music service — the iPod Nano and Shuffle remained pure mp3 players to the end. As for the iPod Touch, it looks like it won’t be going anywhere for the time being. Not only is Apple continuing production, they’re doubling storage capacity options from 16 GB and 64 GB to 32 GB and 128 GB. Despite the storage bump, the prices will still be the same — $200 and $300, respectively.