College students around the world are heavy music listeners, and for some students, listening to music is a must. There are many styles of music that are embraced and focused on. But the way music is heard has made a slight change in today’s society. From a spinning CD to a small hand held device, the bulkiness of a CD player does not compete with the compact size of Apple’s iPods. Although, the size of an iPod is small and can fit in the palm of a hand, it has the capability to hold over 2,000 songs. “The iPod is so convenient for me,” said Sarah Watkins, a senior secondary English education major from Bloomington, Ill. ” It allows me to save space in my back pack because I don’t have to bring a folder of CDs which I used to listen to everyday before I got an iPod and it also doesn’t skip like CD players.” Ever since the iPod hit retail stores in October of 2001, it was a product that changed the way people listened to music. But it wasn’t always on the top of the list for music players. It received criticisms because of its high prices. “I had one of the first iPods,” said Ron Blakley, a computer salesman at Best Buy. “When they were first introduced, the price, which was $400, didn’t balance with the product. Apple computers were not major sellers and it was not compatible with more common programs such as Windows.” Today, the price of the original iPod has decreased and Apple has added slight modifications to the product to fit its customers’ needs. There a various types of iPods that can cater to any crowd, especially college students. iPods now let you view movies, listen to the radio, view pictures, and add extra memory to your device. “The iPod Shuffle is the one that I thought would be best for me,” said Wendy Spikes, a fitness trainer at a local YMCA. “I selected this particular iPod because it is very small and when I’m working out I don’t have to worry about breaking it if it falls.” Not only has the iPod been modified in size and capability, it has also added some changes in style. There are many types of colors that can be on an iPod or it can even be customized. “That’s where majority of our sales come from each year at the end of summer;” said
Dillion Fields, a representative from an Apple store in Los Angeles. “A lot of college students like to come in and order customized iPods. I would say 40 percent of our sales in the fourth quarter are from college students.” According to apple.com, on April 9, the 100 millionth iPod had been sold making it the fastest selling music player in history. “At this historic milestone, we want to thank music lovers everywhere for making iPod such an incredible success,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “iPod has helped millions of people around the world rekindle their passion for music, and we’re thrilled to be a part of that.” With the digital music world being taken over by iPod, it has found a new way besides music to attract customers. The iPhone was introduced in the summer of 2007 and has been a highly talked about product. The same capabilities that were on the standard iPods are now transferred to a telephone. Searching the web, calling classmates, watching videos, and the traditional listening to music is now done through a slim platform that is reasonably priced. “I think the iPhone has lived up to its hype,” said Charmin Rodgers, a junior business management major from Lafayette. “I actually waited in the Cingular store for two hours for the phone and it was well worth my wait.” With the emergence of the iPhone and record breaking sales of the iPod, the digital era is on its way to a new level. The iPod is here to stay and competitors need to strategize a brilliant plan if they want to stand a chance.