Apple Has a Gift Tree … I Have an iPod Tree!

Apple Has a Gift Tree ... I Have an iPod Tree!

In the ‘last minute gift’ email from Apple yesterday they included the image at the top, showing representations of various Apple products on the base of a Mac Pro, with different colored iPod Shuffles as ornaments. It is a cool image that immediately struck me.

On reason it struck me was that while I was gathering up gear to stuff in the SeV Expedition for my review video, I took all of our iPods and arranged them in a sort of ‘family tree’ and took a few pictures. I had thought it might make a good basis for a post … but until I saw that Apple image I didn’t know when or why.

The holidays are a great time to reminisce and share memories, and since I have spent more time focusing on music reviews – particularly across genres I don’t generally track – this year than ever before (and am still WAY behind), I have appreciated my iPods abilities in a new way. Music is central to my family in terms of three of us (all but my wife) being multi-instrumentalists as well as having large personal music collections. Yet at the same time the ascendancy of streaming music has also had a great impact on out listening. So it seems appropriate to step back in time over the last 9+ years of my iPod history.

Here is my iPod Family Tree!

Apple Has a Gift Tree ... I Have an iPod Tree!

Let’s take a walk down memory lane, going top to bottom, left to right:

iPod 5GB – the original, Mac-only, FireWire-only hard-disk based iPod. I used it to replace the computer-like Archos 6GB Jukebox 6000, which was USB 1.1 and paired with Musicatch Jukebox. The contrast between the two couldn’t have been more stark …

iPod Mini 6GB – ‘Pinky’, as my wife called it. She really had little desire for an iPod, and looked at it as a gift as not being much better than a blender. Yet as soon as we loaded up a couple of GBs of her library, and she had an arm-band case … she was sold!

iPod Shuffle 512MB – my older son’s first MP3 player. He was just building his own music library, so we could dump it all into a folder and shuffle it up for him!

iPod 40GB – actually my 2nd iPod! I had no need to switch from the original one – I was still on a Mac, still had FireWire … but keeping a 5GB library was a pain. So I just imported EVERYTHING into the 40GB! My iTunes music library has never been as large … now most of that is on an external drive!

iPod Nano 4GB – I found having the 40GB was more hassle than anything else, and really wanted to get back to something smaller. My kids already had their ‘fatty’ Nanos, so I went last-gen for this one, and it has been my ‘car iPod’ ever since!

iPod Nano 8GB – like all iPods, Pinky’s battery was dying after a couple of years of heavy use … so along came ‘Maggie’. This is still her main iPod (no interest in my old Touch), and she still has less than 4GB of stuff on it!

iPod Shuffle 1GB – my younger son’s first MP3 player. Loaded up a folder just like his brother … but with very different musical inclinations! After he moved on this became my exercise iPod while I was going to the gym.

iPod Touch 1st Gen 32GB – In early 2008 when I got this I was happy with my Dell Axim x51v for a PDA, happy with the Axim as well as the DS & PSP for gaming, had enough iPods, and didn’t care about video on the go. Even before the App Store this had shifted to take a large chunk of my life … and that has only increased! The battery on this one is getting pretty weary at this point and is only good for a few hours.

iPod Nano 4GB – we got the boys matching 4GB iPod Nanos for Christmas when they came out. They have used them for music, video, and so on … well, until my older son was doing his own laundry last week and put his through the wash!

iPod Touch ‘3rd’ Gen 8GB – This one my younger son saved up for and bought himself, and absolutely gets the use from on a daily basis! I put ‘3rd’ in quotes since the 8GB is really a 2nd gen hold-over, so it gets a ‘partial’ iOS 4 upgrade (no multitasking). Also … this was the first iPod we owned that didn’t support FireWire … meaning we had to start paying attention to the pile of accessories we had built up!

iPad 32GB WiFi – I ordered this the first moment I could through my corporate portal … and it is the center of my life – office apps, mind manager, email & web, games, music apps, and on and on!

iPod Touch 4thGen 32GB – whatever the iPad doesn’t do … gets done by the iPod Touch! It is my main music device, and is absolutely great for gaming.

Missing from the picture – surprisingly not too much. My older son’s ‘washed’ Nano, and a 1GB 1st gen Shuffle I had gotten as a door prize at a technical conference … that lasted about 6 months and eventually I let my kids dissect!

So what does your iPod Family Tree look like?

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About the Author

Michael Anderson
I have loved technology for as long as I can remember - and have been a computer gamer since the PDP-10! Mobile Technology has played a major role in my life - I have used an electronic companion since the HP95LX more than 20 years ago, and have been a 'Laptop First' person since my Compaq LTE Lite 3/20 and Powerbook 170 back in 1991! As an avid gamer and gadget-junkie I was constantly asked for my opinions on new technology, which led to writing small blurbs ... and eventually becoming a reviewer many years ago. My family is my biggest priority in life, and they alternate between loving and tolerating my gaming and gadget hobbies ... but ultimately benefits from the addition of technology to our lives!

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