IPod Shuffle

by Jack Richins

Out of all the apple announcements this week, I can’t think of any more contrasting than the iPod Shuffle and the Mac mini. The Mac mini I think makes tons of sense for Apple. A low price point machine can’t help but increase their market share. And it’s cheap enough that some users frustrated with the spyware and viruses on their PC might just throw away $500 at a chance to actually read their email and browse the web in peace (at least, they may think that’s what will happen :). Heck, I almost sold myself on the idea just writing about until I thought – what a minute, what else would it be good for other than email and the web? And I can buy a $200 box from AMD and do the same thing. But I digress.

My real gripe is that the iPod shuffle just degrades the iPod name. The iPod was actually revolutionary – the shuffle is an MP3 player circa 1999. The crazy thing is, I think Apple will probably get away with this – they have enough of a brand name, I think people will actually spend $100 to buy something called an iPod. Regardless of how much better the competing $100 MP3 players are. Or that they can get an equivalent MP3 player for $60. Or less. At the $100 price point, people start making foolish decisions. Like the family that bought a digital camera for their daughter and son-in-law who didn’t own a computer. Still don’t understand that one. Don’t want to name names to protect the idio… I mean innocents. Guess 2005 will either enlighten me on why the shuffle really is a good thing or on how many innocents there really are in the world.

Anyone else’s opinion?