The iPod Classic: Not Dead Yet

If you watched today's Apple media event, you probably saw Steve Jobs talk about the "all-new" iPod lineup, featuring updated versions of the iPod touch, iPod nano and iPod shuffle. Not mentioned in the keynote was the iPod classic, the last hard-drive based iPod available.

Well, the iPod classic -- the spiritual successor to the original iPod -- is not dead, not yet anyway. Sure, it didn't get updated, and the price didn't change at all, but it's still there on Apple's iPod web site. In fact, here's visual proof:

There it is, right next to the updated iPod touch and the new Apple TV, looking fat and lame as ever. It's amazing just how far the iPod has come. When it first debuted in October of 2001, it was much thicker, all white, had individual buttons for each function (next, back, menu, play/pause) rather than the clickwheel, had a black and white screen and held five gigabytes of music. It was a complete dinosaur compared to the current iPod classic, but was seen as revolutionary (well, technically it wasn't until the third-generation iPod that the revolution really began, but you get my point).

Now, the iPod classic is pretty much just sitting there stagnant in Apple's lineup waiting to be killed, which is a shame. I still think there's a market for a device that holds a large amount of media, especially since Apple has yet to introduce a good method for streaming media from your desktop iTunes library to your iOS device (which is interesting since Airplay -- the updated version of AirTunes -- now supports streaming FROM an iOS device to the AppleTV).

I'm actually surprised that Apple didn't kill the iPod classic, but I guess if they're still turning a profit on them, it doesn't make sense to kill them off entirely. It's just kind of sad to see a keynote where "iPod" no longer includes a screen+clickwheel device. Maybe it'll get an update eventually, but more likely it'll be quietly removed from the lineup at some point in the next year. So if you want an iPod that holds more than 64 GB of media, you should probably pick up a classic sooner rather than later.