Apple: iPods designed to last four years [updated] | iLounge News


Apple: iPods designed to last four years [updated]

In a Chicago Tribune article on faulty iPods, an Apple spokeswoman said that failure rates for the device are low, and that an iPod is designed to last four years. Apple’s Natalie Kerris said iPods have a failure rate of less than 5%, which she said is “fairly low” compared with other electronics. “The vast majority of our customers are extremely happy with their iPods,” she said. Rob Enderle, analyst at the Enderle Group, estimates that 15% of iPods will fail within one year of purchase. He said that’s comparable to other gadgets, such as cell phones. The Tribune article also cites a 2005 survey by MacInTouch, which includes reports from more than 4,000 respondents. The survey found that of the 9,000 iPods owned by the respondents, more than 1,400 of the Apple devices had failed. The survey reported a total failure rate of 13.7%, about half battery related and half hard drive related.

Update: Apple spokeswoman Natalie Kerris has confirmed to iLounge that she was misquoted in the above-linked Chicago Tribune article. She said she told the reporter that the iPod was designed to last “for years”—not “four years.”

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Less than 5%.
Sounds great.

Makes me wonder why I’m on iPod #4 in just over 12 months.

Posted by Zeke on July 26, 2006 at 12:57 PM (CDT)


I bought a 4th G, 40 gb iPod the day it came out. Died in 11 months. I had a product replacement warranty from Future Shop or I would have been SOL. Shrug; I move on and keep hoping nthat Apple will use a replaceable battery.


Posted by Thomas Davie on July 26, 2006 at 1:03 PM (CDT)


3 Year Warranty from Apple.  You walk in, say “My iPod is broken.” and they just hand you a new one.  I’ve never actually had a problem with any of my iPod’s, and my First Gen 5gig iPod is still functioning just fine.

If you’re sloppy, and kick the thing around, then sure, you’re going to have problems, but if you treet it with the same care you treet a laptop or a Palm pilot, you’ll be fine.

Posted by Matthew C Egan on July 26, 2006 at 1:14 PM (CDT)



Actually its a 2 Year Warranty if you purchase the $60 Apple Care.
My 1.5 year old iPod which I hardly ever used died last month.


Posted by mr.steevo on July 26, 2006 at 1:26 PM (CDT)


My 3G iPod is still working perfectly after 4 years… still looks brand new too, thanks to an iSkin cover… :)

Posted by corsa on July 26, 2006 at 1:42 PM (CDT)


I bought the very first iPod (5GB Gen 1) in November ‘01… still my only iPod today.  I use it daily and I’m not particularly gental with it.  I haven’t even had any of the infamous battery problems… I get a good 4+ hrs or more.

I know I’m probably just lucky, but impressive none the less.

Posted by matthew brogan on July 26, 2006 at 1:45 PM (CDT)


hope my 5Gen iPod doesn’t die soon, because i don’t have my music backuped…

Posted by dhoyos on July 26, 2006 at 1:45 PM (CDT)


I bought a 3G iPod the day it came out and thanfully, a 2year warranty. Between battery and drive problems I replaced it 4 times. The last one died 2 weeks after the warranty expired and 2 months before the release of iPod w/video. Needless to say, I bought the warranty again. Let’s face it, its a portable hard drive you carry around all the time. The thing is bound to fail.

Posted by Blank Frank on July 26, 2006 at 2:01 PM (CDT)


“hope my 5Gen iPod doesn’t die soon, because i don’t have my music backuped”

You will regret that someday.

Posted by B.Mick on July 26, 2006 at 2:02 PM (CDT)


I’ve had my 30gb photo for well over a year, and i’ve never had a minute’s trouble with it. Ditto my 4gig nano which I’ve had since they came out. Bear in mind that the Macintouch survey verified that the 40gig b&w 4G was a total lemon, with the highest failure rate of any iPod.

Posted by eiscir on July 26, 2006 at 2:20 PM (CDT)


“hope my 5Gen iPod doesn’t die soon, because i don’t have my music backuped”

Backup backup backup! I did a full backup recently of my 40 gigs iPod (I do have a copy on pc but you never know). Took about 8 dvds, not that big a thing.

PS: Backup the iTunes library file too if you don’t want to lose your ratings (‘cause that’s a real pain…)

Oh and I have a 1.5 year 40gig 4G iPod and I’m at #4… my applecare warranty is still good for about 6 months. Can’t tell you how happy I’ve been to having got that!!

Still, at the price of those things, I would expect them to last more than 4 years…

Posted by MrThebunny on July 26, 2006 at 2:21 PM (CDT)


“The survey reported a total failure rate of 13.7%, about half battery related and half hard drive related.”

(1) You can easily buy iPod replacement batteries in stores or online for most models, even better than the originals
(2) Apple glues together about 4 of Samsung’s new 8gb chips to make a 32gb iPod or more, means no HARD drive to break!

So things can only get better.


Posted by will_bc on July 26, 2006 at 2:22 PM (CDT)


My 3G that I bought in ‘04 still works perfectly. Haven’t noticed any differences in performance. And needless to say my 5G video works without any problems as well.

Posted by Alpha on July 26, 2006 at 2:26 PM (CDT)


I have a 3rd gen ipod and it’s worked even when I’ve dropped it on the cement.  The battery stopped holding a charge a while back so I replaced it with a 3rd party battery and it’s doing fine now.  So that’s been two and a half years.  Not too bad.  The battery wasn’t a big deal since I mostly listen to it while it’s charging at home or in my car.  The replacement was about 25 USD.

Posted by Jeremy on July 26, 2006 at 2:35 PM (CDT)


I’ve had:

1G 5 gig - no problems, EXCELLENT battery life

2G 10 gig - headphone jack failure

4G 20 gig - no problems

5G 30 gig - headphone jack right side failure after 2 months.

So I guess i’m at a 50/50 failure rate with my iPods. I was VERY dissapointed with my video iPod breaking after 2 months, but got it replaced with no problems and no charge thru the Apple store in the Yorkdale plaza.

Posted by ahMEmon on July 26, 2006 at 2:48 PM (CDT)


Have I just gotten lucky? Because I have a 3G 20gig, a Nano and a Shuffle, and none of the above have ever crashed, died or given me an ounce of trouble. I’ve had the 3G for 4 years or so - not a scratch, never a harddrive issue. How are these people treating their iPods???? I still get minimum 4-6 hours battery life from my 3G, and 8 or so from my Nano.

Posted by Jason on July 26, 2006 at 2:51 PM (CDT)


Just keep in mind

Heat is bad, Don’t drop it, Keep away from magnetic devices, and backup,backup,backup

Posted by Jasper Johns on July 26, 2006 at 3:09 PM (CDT)


I hope you guys don’t get jealous, but my first generation iPod just had its hard drive croak in May.

Yep, I have been listening to just 5 GB of music on the thickest, heaviest, and quite ancient iPod for just over four years.

Thanks Apple (and my dad) for the best Christmas gift ever.

Now, if only replacement 5 GB hard drives didn’t cost $80.

Posted by Steven Vance on July 26, 2006 at 3:28 PM (CDT)


My 1G 10GB iPod still works beautifully.  I also have a 30GB 5G iPod that’s a stunner.  No problems with either.

Posted by John CG on July 26, 2006 at 3:29 PM (CDT)


IMHO I think the 1st gen iPods, though heavy and clunky, were the best made. I do know a couple people who are still jamming to their ancient iPods with no battery/hard drive related problems whatsoever!

Posted by ahMEmon on July 26, 2006 at 3:37 PM (CDT)

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