Pouring one out for the iPod Classic
As the tech industry becomes increasingly marred by planned obsolescence, it can be incredibly exhausting to keep up with all the new devices seemingly thrust into the world out of nowhere. But while many flocked to Apple’s site this month to take in the specs of the latest iPhone — and hear Jony Ive’s terrific pronunciation of “aluminum” — I found myself scorning the new device in order to mourn the death of an esteemed old one.
In an unforeseen move, Apple has ceased production of the iPod Classic. What was once its marquee music player has now been unceremoniously pulled from the Apple website without much fanfare.
There is almost no reason for anyone to care with many other options available, but I still felt personally aggrieved and fair bit sentimental upon hearing the news, considering I still use mine to this day.
Born and bred with a touch screen close at hand, today’s youth have no reason to be nostalgic for a time when navigating one’s music library meant using a cumbersome click-wheel.
Despite its sometimes-tedious interface, the Classic was a music nerd’s dream with its one hundred and sixty gigabytes of storage and its understatedly sleek design. In many ways, the Classic was the gateway to a life spent obsessing over music.
I still remember with a touch of pride the day my library expanded to the point where my paltry sixteen gigabyte Nano couldn’t contain it; I could finally justify the purchase of a Classic to my mom whose credit card I would borrow to make the purchase at the store, as my debit had a hundred dollar limit (before you mock me, this was in grade ten).
I rushed home to unbox my prize and cradled it with tenderness normally reserved for newborns. The black iPod had a certain heft to it that made it a pleasure to hold in the palm of my hand and I vowed to keep it in pristine form for as long as possible.
As with all machines, it had a number of eccentricities that made it all the more loveable, including the gentle whir of its inner mechanisms. Although I was careful with it through the years, my iPod now has a few knocks that could have been avoided — did I really have to stick it in my hoodie pocket only for it to fall out during my run? —but it is still steadily plugging along.
Over time, I’ve gradually filled its innards with more newly discovered music – and I only have twenty-five gigs left. It saddens me that the sixty-four gigabyte touch is the largest iPod people have to choose from now, but I realize that with the popularization of cloud-based streaming services like Spotify and the gradual cheapening of data plans, large storage capacity won’t be necessary in the future.
Although I’ll still stick with mine for the time being, it pains me to say farewell to a mammoth. Take care, iPod classic. Don’t forget to eject before disconnecting.