Apple’s iPod Photo and iPod U2 Special Edition are only going to add to iPod mania

“I’ve written a lot about the iPod, iTunes, and iTunes Music Store this year. At times I’ve wondered if I’ve devoted too much attention to it. Based on the last few weeks of news, however, perhaps the opposite is true – that the iPod is such a genuine phenomenon that I haven’t written about it enough,” John


  1. Gruber is always a great read.

    I didn’t have time to read the entire article, but I LOVE the first part where he takes apart, limb by limb, everything Thur-idiot has ever written about the iPod– all wrong stuff, that is.

    Talk about amunition.

    Gruber needs more than hits. He needs memberships and a job (see prior articles). He deserves them.

    1st post?

  2. Apple sells about 3 million macs a year..

    They’re on pace to sell 12 million iPods per year.. a number that will grow as more models are released

    how many of those 12 million will think about macs..

    considering they don’t cherish their Dells.. it shouldn’t be too hard..

  3. Brilliant well written article and finally calling some well deserved rational shots to Paul the Turd. Very insightful.

    It is a phenomenon. I have hard core window users asking me about the iPod. They are going to sell tons of them.

    It is about the interface.

  4. Nice article, but the author and the Jupiter Research Analyst he quotes are not quite right when they assert there is no legal source material for an iPod Video. I have tons of home movies in DV format that I would rip to an iPod Video for playback on a TV via iPod. In fact I have more video content than photo content.

    iPod Photo presumably will be a hit because it allows home users to carry their own, non copyright protected photos around. What about their own, non copyright protected home videos?

    Compressed to MP4 it would be ideal for that small sreen too – just like watching a web video in fact – and nobody complaiins about that.

  5. Actually John, the analyst had it right:

    “It�s because unlike music, it�s illegal to rip a DVD to your hard drive, Pixar or otherwise. Simple. No same company wants to get into that legal issue with the studios and provide those tools. Not Apple. Not Microsoft. In fact, the reason MediaCenter Extenders won�t stream DVDs from your MCE to the device is that in order to do so they need to be decrypted to send the stream. That�s illegal too. Should it be? Of course not, but at the moment, it is. The only other source of legal video content is recorded TV and Apple at the moment has no interest in playing in that market. Should they? Perhaps, but that�s another story. Now there�s always personal created video but the market for that is tiny� really, really tiny. Call me and I�ll show you how small those numbers are. There�s a reason we call them consumers, as they consume content and not create it. There�s no market for the video iPod for Apple�s customers at the moment. No evil schemes. No Machiavellian thoughts behind it. It�s just not a good move for Apple without the sources of content they need. They will be there and we will get a video iPod one day. Just not this one.”

  6. “No same company wants to get into that legal issue”

    I have read that quote about 4 times now and it is starting to bug me that no one has put a [sic] after “same” so I will do so here:

    “No same [sic] company wants to get into that legal issue”

    Ah, There. Now I feel better. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”grin” style=”border:0;” />

  7. Mac sales are great already and are set to get MASSIVELY better.

    Year over year CPU unit sales are up 6% but with G5 production problems you need to pay attention to G4 performance. And how much was that up? Just 47.5%!

    I personally don’t think we’ve seen anything yet.

  8. Ed: actually, you miss the point I was making.

    I was not talking about ripping DVDs but transfering your own DV footage.

    Sure ripping DVDs is illegal, so is P2P music sharing, but transferring your home DV movies to an iPod is not illegal.

  9. John is right – what is wrong with copyiing your own DV footage to an iPod?

    Also, the illegal DVD ripping argument seems to be flawed as you can rip a DVD to your Mac now anyway – is the anal-ist suggesting that my PowerBook is an illegal tool?

  10. I certainly don’t care about video capabilities on an iPod. Why would I want to watch a movie or home video on a 2″ screen?!? I know my eye sight isn’t that good. I’ll use a 12″ PowerBook for portable video myself.

  11. John, at the beginning of 2004, only about 1 out of every 3 digital camera owners also owned a camcorder (digital and analog). Since then digital cameras have been on a boom while digital camcorders sell at only a slightly increased sales pace. So cameras (not even including those in cell phones) far exceed camcorders.

    Plus, camcorder video requires editing; granted that it is much easier now with iMovie/Firewire on any Mac (even the $799 eMac). But standard PCs come with neither. Whereas most people do not edit or crop or do anything to their photos.

    So home video content is growing but it is extremely tiny compared to photos and music. That said, being able to carry video (H.264 format) and play-it-back to a TV-display from a pocketable device seems likely in the future.

  12. Barry, whether a device is a copyright-infringing tool comes down to whether that device has other substantial non-copyright-infringing uses. That’s the principle from the VCR case.

    So, clearly a Powerbook does have such uses. I (and you) would argue that the iPod also has such uses (music and photos), but it would not be as clear-cut if the scope ot the argument was narrowed to just video. Would an iPod Video have substantial non-copyright infringing uses for video? Such as for home video and TV content. The courts could go either way, given the small amount of such content.

    In any case, if Apple is planning a long-term lucrative business involving sale of digital movies, there is no point starting off on the wrong foot with the owners of that content. As it is, once Tiger is released with H.264, which could allow higher quality at low bit-rates, Apple will have to figure out how to stop DVDs ripped to H.264 from being sent across networks. Hopefully, Hollywood would just let it go, and focus on selling DRMed High-Definition DVDs.

  13. K: you sound like an apologist for the anal-ist. Copying music to your computer and sharing it over the internet is a Copyright infringement, right?

    And ripping a CD to your HD and transferring it to your iPod I am sure was not part of the original licence agreement either.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.