“The iPod is the modern-day equivalent of the Samurai sword” | iLounge News

2014 iPad iPhone iPod Buyers' Guide from iLounge.com

News

“The iPod is the modern-day equivalent of the Samurai sword”

Author's pic

By Dennis Lloyd

Publisher, iLounge
Published: Tuesday, January 20, 2004
News Categories: iPod

“It is a bit emasculating to admit this, but portable electronics have replaced sidearms in our culture. I draw upon the Japanese katana for my analogy for several reasons. First, the katana was much more than a mere weapon or cutting tool. It was a portable symbol of status, power, and class. The warrior class, the Samurai, were actually quite numerous. At their height they were nearly 10% of the population of Japan. Before 1876, wearing the katana conveyed to the casual observer that the wearer of the long and short swords possessed a rank and status of an elite group.

The simple fact that people are willing to pay hundreds of dollars more for an iPod, when equal technology is available in a less impressive-looking package, points directly to this analogy. People will pay more for a status symbol, and in doing so, they have made the iPod one of the most important cultural icons today.”

« Updated: Audio Outfitters looking for beta testers for new iPod product

Pacific Rim Technologies announces iShield II aluminum case »

Related Stories

Comments

1

So Chris, do you live in Japan? Because I know I don’t. So how have electronics replaced side arms in Western society? I think your line of thinking is flawed to say the least. I would have to say it’s silly.

Posted by Dr_Cogent on January 20, 2004 at 10:59 AM (PDT)

2

Selling a 1.3 million iPods in 24 months sounds impressive, but is not that huge a number when you realize that from 1979 to 1999 Sony managed to sell over 186 million Walkman cassette players, an average of over nine million a year. Apple still has a long way to go to before it’ll achieve the ubiquity that Sony once possessed.

The samurai quickly became lethargic, fattened parasites who retarded Japan’s economy until they were swept away by change initiated by the arrival of advanced American warships, technologies, and culture.

Posted by Ubik on January 20, 2004 at 11:05 AM (PDT)

3

“The simple fact that people are willing to pay hundreds of dollars more for an iPod, when equal technology is available in a less impressive-looking package, points directly to this analogy.”

Equal technology?  I can’t think of any. And don’t say the Dell DJ, because it has a poor interface, larger packaging, and isn’t “hundreds” less.  Then tell me about something that is Mac compatible. 

Posted by Heywood on January 20, 2004 at 11:14 AM (PDT)

4

It’s true some people buy an iPod to show off, but I don’t think they do so to show they belong to a certain category of people. As for myself, I actually dislike seeing so many iPods in other hands. I feel like a sheep.

LoneStar (following the herd)

Posted by LoneStar on January 20, 2004 at 11:16 AM (PDT)

5

...what?

Posted by Schiano on January 20, 2004 at 11:17 AM (PDT)

6

I never bought my iPod to “show off”. I buy my electronics with the following criteria. What is the best product I can afford. If it happens to work out that I can afford the best of the best, I get it. I don’t compromise my tech toys. I don’t care what anyone else thinks and I never have. If they think I am a show off - oh well.

Posted by Dr_Cogent on January 20, 2004 at 11:20 AM (PDT)

7

SamuraiPod. HYAAAH! ;-p

Posted by Sam on January 20, 2004 at 11:21 AM (PDT)

8

Another pointless ‘news’ item. I simply dont care what this person thinks about the iPod being a modern day replacement for the sword.

It is quite ridiculous to siggest that a consumer electronics device has replaced a centuries old symbol of honour.

I’m not trying to deny him his opinion, I’m just bored of these silly so called news items.

I work for a national UK newspaper and this type of artcile is an Opinion (instead of news) article, ipodlounger please take note smile and maybe label them as such in future.

Not only is this incredibly self-important but trivial and very, very dull.

Almost as dull as this reply.

Posted by WebBat on January 20, 2004 at 11:22 AM (PDT)

9

When I can kill someone with my iPod, then it will be more like a Samurai sword. wink

Posted by Dr_Cogent on January 20, 2004 at 11:23 AM (PDT)

10

Ubik: Apple has sold over 2 million iPods (2 millionth in early December). True, that doesn’t equate to Sony’s numbers for Walkmans, but the iPod costs several times more than the Walkman ever did. AND, I do believe that in its first 24 months, the iPod actually outsold the Walkman’s first 24 months.

Posted by Atomic Bomb in Mid-Atlantic on January 20, 2004 at 12:00 PM (PDT)

11

2 million? That is impressive.

Remember though, in 1979 when the Walkman was introduced it cost $200 in the US. That’s around $500 in today’s dollar. Seems to compare quite well with the iPod, whose average retail price across the line is less than this. Wasn’t the 10GB model the most popular until recently?

Posted by Ubik on January 20, 2004 at 12:11 PM (PDT)

12

Kill Bill (Gates) !

Posted by jr on January 20, 2004 at 12:13 PM (PDT)

13

“The simple fact that people are willing to pay hundreds of dollars more for an iPod, when equal technology is available in a less impressive-looking package, points directly to this analogy.”

If one wanted to waste money on an mp3 player simply for status one might consider the BeoSound 2 from Bang and Olufsen. With 128 Mb removable SD Ram card, docking base, software and optional A8 headphones the unit retails for a whopping $1400. Did I mention it has no LCD read out? To me, that makes as much sense as “Hey - let’s go to the airport and drink!” I got my 40 gig iPod simply because even though it’s only has around 4,000 songs as of today, I can find exactly what i’m looking for in seconds. If you think the ipod is all Bling, then you need to do your homework, Samurai Dude. It truly is all about the music. And as Sony President Kunitake Ando put it a week or so ago on NPR, in direct reference to the iPod: We’re (Sony) no longer competing with quality and style, we are now competing with concept.

Posted by H. Michael Karshis on January 20, 2004 at 12:26 PM (PDT)

14

I think what he’s trying to say is that the ipod is not the best in terms of specs.  Sound quality isn’t as good as Irivers player or even nomad zen.  So yes you are paying extra for style over quality.

Posted by dave on January 20, 2004 at 1:17 PM (PDT)

15

“Sound quality isn’t as good as Irivers player or even nomad zen.”

What is a “nomad zen”? Is that like a wandering, peaceful Samurai?

Posted by Atomic Bomb in Mid-Atlantic on January 20, 2004 at 1:27 PM (PDT)

16

Maybe it’s because I am not endowed with such discriminating ears, but the iRiver and Zen do not sound any better or any worse than the ipod when using the same headphones. Or maybe I don’t pretend to be pretentious.

Is there empirical data for such claims?

Posted by Agent Orange on January 20, 2004 at 1:29 PM (PDT)

17

“I think what he’s trying to say is that the ipod is not the best in terms of specs.  Sound quality isn’t as good as Irivers player or even nomad zen.  So yes you are paying extra for style over quality.”

The iPod has more then adequate sound for me.  The big difference between it and other players is that it is small, light weight, has a great menu system, and has scroll wheel technology that no one even comes close to.

Mike

Posted by Mike on January 20, 2004 at 1:32 PM (PDT)

18

I love my iPod and all, but man - some people write the craziest $h!t…

Posted by me on January 20, 2004 at 1:53 PM (PDT)

19

equal players for hundreds less? wow i want to live in that world smile there ain’t nothin that can match my pink mini… if it ever gets here!

Posted by Mac Beth on January 20, 2004 at 2:11 PM (PDT)

20

Honestly, this site is going down the drain! What utter rubbish!

Posted by mafo on January 20, 2004 at 2:42 PM (PDT)

Page 1 of 3 pages  1 2 3 >

If you have a comment, news tip, advertising inquiry, or coverage request, a question about iPods/iPhones/iPad or accessories, or if you sell or market iPod/iPhone/iPad products or services, read iLounge's Comments + Questions policies before posting, and fully identify yourself if you do. We will delete comments containing advertising, astroturfing, trolling, personal attacks, offensive language, or other objectionable content, then ban and/or publicly identify violators.

Commenting is not available in this section entry.

Email:

Recent News

Recent Reviews

Recent Articles

Shop for Accessories: Cases, speakers, chargers, etc.