Dwindling iPod classic supplies spark refresh rumors | iLounge News

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Dwindling iPod classic supplies spark refresh rumors

A number of major retailers are reporting short supplies of the iPod classic, leading some to speculate that the aging iPod model may finally see a refresh—or else be discontinued. iPodnn reports that estimated shipping times for the silver iPod classic have slipped from 24 hours to 1-3 business days on the Apple Online Store, while Best Buy’s website claims the player is backordered for 1-2 weeks, and Target has it listed as backordered for 2-4 weeks. Although the original report states that the supply issues are limited to the silver model of the iPod classic, Apple reseller J&R lists both the silver and black models as out of stock, and Amazon.com’s shipping times for the silver model are 1-3 weeks, compared to 2-4 weeks for the black model. The iPod classic was last updated in September 2009 with a modest capacity bump from 120GB to 160GB and was not mentioned at Apple’s annual iPod event for 2010, however, Toshiba recently announced a new line of hard drives in capacities up to 220GB that could be used in a next-generation model. Whether this shortage is temporary, a sign of an impending update, or a sign that Apple is discontinuing the model entirely is currently unknown.

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Comments

1

I hope it gets more than a memory bump, just something to keep it fresh for everyone who doesn’t want a touch screen iPod.

Posted by Andy in London, UK on February 8, 2011 at 2:27 PM (CST)

2

The Apple Store UK says that both Silver and Black Classics are in stock and ship within 24hrs however Amazon UK is down to two Black and three Silver Classics.

Posted by Andy in London, UK on February 8, 2011 at 2:59 PM (CST)

3

My local Best Buy finally get a bunch in a couple weeks ago and now the case is bare.  I have been holding out on hopes that there is a refresh with the new Toshiba 220GB drives.  That would make me finally upgrade from my 5G 60GB.

I gotta think there obviously is some market if places are showing out of stock or delays and backorders.  Make it right, I have my touch phone but I want my High Capacity Music Player!

Posted by MadtwonMoxie on February 8, 2011 at 3:34 PM (CST)

4

I would not be holding your breath over a refresh this time of year for a product that was unofficially declared non-existent nearly six months ago at last year’s iPod event. IF there’s going to be some sort of new classic, I’d wager they’d wait until this fall at the 10th anniversary, not roll out its first update in 18 months at the time of year they rolled out the oh-so-high-profile 3G shuffle. Most likely it’s a hiccup in the supply chain, otherwise my prediction from last fall is panning out and they’re quietly discontinuing the classic now that the holiday season is past.

Posted by Code Monkey in Midstate New York on February 8, 2011 at 3:42 PM (CST)

5

It looks to me like the Classic’s days are numbered. Maybe we’ll see a bigger iPhone (finally getting up to 64GB) followed by a high-cap (128GB?) iPod Touch 5th gen.

Posted by Jarathen on February 8, 2011 at 4:01 PM (CST)

6

I think the Classic still has some life to it, if only for the folks who want either high-capacity iPods or love the click-wheel interface. A capacity bump would be nice and is something that could be announced alongside iPad 2 in the next few weeks.

In the long run, the Classic could get a few more improvements like a larger screen a la the Zune, and perhaps FM radio. That could be introduced in September as the 10th anniversary edition. Apple’s a big fan of milestones, so it would be like Jobs to talk about the iPod that started it all and how many billions of songs they’ve sold, etc.

Maybe the Classic will just be one of those devices where Apple updates it occasionally with some capacity bumps and tweaks. Not everything in Apple’s lineup is updated annually, including its Airport wireless routers and Cinema Display monitors, along with some other accessories like the universal dock or the earphones. Maybe the Classic just goes with those items now. It’s not dead, it’s just moving on to a different type of retail existence outside of the annual refresh cycle.

Posted by cxc273 on February 8, 2011 at 4:33 PM (CST)

7

I cant see a 128GB flash iPod around in September, look at the MacBook Air, you add $200 just to jump from 64GB to 128GB, everything else is identical, then take a 64GB iPod touch at $399, if Apple did nothing but a memory bump on it, it would cost in the ball park of $599. Or you could get a Classic for less than half the price with a few more GB’s of memory.

The Classic could get a small internal speaker like the iPod Nano 5th gen had.

Posted by Andy in London, UK on February 8, 2011 at 5:02 PM (CST)

8

I would be just be happy to see the ability to turn off Cover Flow, like I can do in my previous generation Nano.

Cover Flow takes up too much processing power and hard-drive movement.  It may work for iTunes on a desktop or laptop, but it certainly bogs down everything to a crawl on the iPod Classic.

And if you can turn it off in the Nano, why don’t they extend the same courtesy to the iPod Classic?

And while you’re at it, bring back the Myriad typeface.  Helvetica takes up too much space compared to Myriad (compare it to the iPod Generation 5.5, the gold standard of iPods).

Posted by JimmyBobSmith on February 8, 2011 at 6:01 PM (CST)

9

The iPod Classic will always be the choice for hard-core music lovers. I doubt that they would drop it.

Posted by Josh C. on February 8, 2011 at 9:37 PM (CST)

10

@9: Doubting they would drop it seems a foolish bit of faith to put in Apple. One, it’s not “always” the choice (I couldn’t fit my media collection on the current classic even if I wanted. Your claim is not backed up by anything other than wanting it to be so, plenty of “hard-core” music lovers (whatever that means) choose devices other than the classic for myriad reasons.  Two, whether they keep it or not is purely a function of profit margins and marketing value, not just the fact that it still sells some number of units annually to the music pack rats of the world (not hard to do with no other competition in the same device class). 

The “classic” hasn’t been the top selling iPod line for Apple since 2003 (the mini rapidly displaced it after its Jan 2004 debut), and the situation certainly isn’t improved today. If Apple perceives that keeping the classic on shelves is costing them more in their current brand perception than they are making selling them, they’ll drop it and not look back.

Posted by Code Monkey in Midstate New York on February 9, 2011 at 10:17 AM (CST)

11

Along with a bump to 220gb, I’d like to see the Classic given the ability to connect to the iPad and the MacBook Air as a full fledged outboard HD.

Posted by ScooterD35 on February 9, 2011 at 10:50 AM (CST)

12

As I said in the other post, there’s still a big enough market for a dedicated media player; certainly enough for one more generation of such a device. Even today, not everyone wants the cost (and agony) of AT&T’s mobile phone service. Nor do they want “apps” or a tablet for running them. Mobile computing (iOS, Android, et. al.) is great, but it’s not for everyone.

If the “new Classic,” for lack of a better name, gets the new 220GB hard drive, a snappy UI (a sticking point on the current Classic), and a GOOD display - let’s face it, the one on the current Classic is almost useless - it’ll be a winner. It will do well for Apple, for the reasons I listed above, and also give the old Click-Wheel iPod a well-deserved last hurrah.

Posted by Farnsworth on February 9, 2011 at 11:28 AM (CST)

13

It’s the best choice for car audio storage.

Posted by solar on February 9, 2011 at 3:13 PM (CST)

14

Sorry, but since its nowhere near September it probably means the thing is done.  Too bad, but that’s the way of things.  I hope it means a higher density Touch is on its way later this year.

Posted by Fanfoot on February 11, 2011 at 12:18 AM (CST)

15

Amazon UK has the silver one back in stock and the black one back in stock from the 15th February, but I don’t think Apple would kill it off with out some sort of farewell like Steve did with OS9. Plus the click wheel iPod made Apple a house hold name and it’s ten years old this year so I think there will be a special edition coming out.

Posted by Andy in London, UK on February 11, 2011 at 8:31 AM (CST)

16

Since the loss of the preferred Wolfson DAC in the iPod around Gen6/Classic, I have one eye on Cowon as they pay more attention to audio quality than Apple has been.

I’d love to see a new classic iPod that returns its focus to audio, to the Wolfson DAC or better - perhaps a 96/24 DAC,  or Burr Brown!  That would certainly differentiate it from the rest of the product line.  Of course… I’m not holding my breath.  I think Apple has gone cheap on audio quality for good, and is heading toward the toilet in that regard, but that is going to give room for other players to take that marketshare.

A phone/camera or tablet is great for calls and apps but I would never use that sort of “noisy” electronic leash to listen to my music… and I’m not alone; perhaps not in the majority, but not alone.

Posted by Eric on March 11, 2011 at 7:50 PM (CST)

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