Apple job posting hints at radio in iPod’s future

“Apple may be considering adding a radio to the iPod, a feature that 37 per cent of Macworld readers were calling for back in October 2003. The iPod Division is looking to recruit a RF Hardware Engineer,” Macworld UK reports.

From Apple’s employment listing:

Title: RF Hardware Engineer – iPod
Req. ID: 2171396
Location: Santa Clara Valley, California
Country: United States

The iPod Division is looking for an RF hardware engineer. This person will work as a member of a cross-functional team responsible for design, implementation, and system integration. Needs to have knowledge of communication circuits and interest in physical principles utilized in modern radio communication devices, thorough knowledge of modulation methods, coding, compression or encryption. Also essential is a working knowledge of EM fields and antennas as applied to radio communication devices.

Additional consideration will be given to experience with standard wireless protocols. Duties include system simulation including channel impairments and interference, schematic capture, guidance of PCB design, prototype bring-up and debugging, hardware bug tracking, functional verification, signal characterization, and manufacturing support. Assist and track progress of groups who qualify the product such as Reliability, EMC, Certification and Safety. The candidate will be responsible for transitioning product to manufacturing and this may involve international travel to manufacturing sites.

Required Experience:
* BSEE required; MSEE desired
* 5+ years experience in RF hardware design.
* Agency (FCC) qualification experience.

Preferred Experience:
* Consumer electronics experience.
* Experience shipping mass production products.

Details of all jobs at Apple can be found here.


  1. When they say “knowledge of modulation methods, coding, compression or encryption” it makes me think it might be WiFi ready and stream to the Airport Express.

  2. As the iPod division is responsible for not only the iPod and iPod mini, but other home and portable devices, I think it is more likely that this job posting is for another product that will have UWB or WiMax capability. This could be a video version of Airport Express, or a multimedia “tablet”.

    Especially with podcasting beginning to grow, I just don’t see AM/FM radio being added.

  3. Or maybe some cool new headphone/earbud technology that will get rid of the cord. Love my iPod, but I HATE detangling that earbud cord everytime I pick it up.

  4. There are so many features that Apple could add: Wi-fi, Bluetooth, radio, video out so you can play slide shows and videos on your TV. With the popularity established they will be able to continue trouncing the competition through innovation. How about introducing iViewers which would be glasses to view videos full size in a mobile environment?

  5. Feature Request:
    Let the Dell Digital Junkbox have an AM/FM radio, how about a Sirius or XM Satellite Radio option on the top-end iPod? One way to keep the “Premium” in the iPod is to stay way ahead of the rest. Since I’m not an engineer I don’t know if it can be done, but it would be VERY cool.

  6. I have to agree with nathan m, It looks more like an integrated wireless transmitter more than FM radio integration to me. Either way, considering that reduced size of the iPod, they could add new components with only a moderate increase in size.

  7. I’m thinking (hoping) integrated FM transmitter. But that’s going to cut into the business of several third party developers, though I’m sure they’ll find something else to invent for the iPod.

  8. I hope it’s for an entirely different product than the iPod. Radio sucks! That’s why I have an iPod. I’m a much better DJ for my own tastes and with 40G iPod that’s already full I don’t need radio stations and the garbage they play.

    That’s the whole magic of the iPod…your tunes…simple.

  9. Imagine how much fun you could have walking down the sidewalk watching a movie with those video goggles on.

    Imagine how much more fun you could have watching someone else walking down the sidewalk watching a movie with those video goggles on.

    Portable video only works for non driving commuters.

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