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Apple Ships iPod Mini, Claims 100,000 Pre-Orders

Apple Ships iPod Mini, Claims 100,000 Pre-Orders

by , 10:15 AM EST, February 17th, 2004

Apple announced this morning that the iPod mini has shipped. Apple first announced the iPod mini at January's Macworld San Francisco, and since that time the company says that it has received more than 100,000 pre-orders for the unit. The iPod mini has been somewhat controversial, with some criticizing it's US$249 price tag for a 4 GB unit, when for US$50 more, a 15 GB iPod could be had. Such criticism has apparently not been universal, however, as people are buying the unit. From Apple:

Apple today announced that iPod mini, the world's smallest portable music player ever to hold up to 1,000 CD-quality songs, will be available on Friday, February 20 at 6:00 p.m. at the Apple Store, Apple's retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers throughout the US. iPod mini is encased in an ultra-portable, lightweight anodized aluminum body and available in a choice of five colors -- silver, gold, pink, blue and green. Apple has received over 100,000 pre-orders for the iPod mini which was introduced last month.

Smaller than most cell phones and weighing only 3.6 ounces, iPod mini builds on the success of the original touch wheel with Apple's innovative patent-pending Click Wheel, which combines the ease and simplicity of the touch wheel with five push buttons for precise, one-handed navigation.

iPod mini features the same award-winning user interface as the rest of the iPod family and works effortlessly with Apple's iTunes Music Store*, the world's number one digital music service, and the iTunes digital music jukebox software for seamlessly buying, managing and listening to digital music collections. iPod mini uses Apple's patent pending Auto-Sync technology that automatically downloads an entire digital music library onto iPod mini and keeps it up-to-date whenever iPod mini is plugged into a Mac or Windows computer.

Pricing & Availability
iPod mini for Mac and Windows will be available in the US through the Apple Store, Apple's retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers on Friday, February 20 for a suggested retail price of US$249. iPod mini will be available worldwide in April. iPod mini comes in a choice of a silver, gold, pink, blue or green 4GB model and includes a belt clip. All iPod minis include earbud headphones, an Apple iPod mini power adapter, a 1.2m 30-pin to FireWire cable, a 1.2m 30-pin to USB 2.0 cable, and a CD with iTunes 4.2 for Mac and Windows computers.

Optional accessories with the following suggested retail prices include the iPod Dock for US$39, in-ear headphones for US$39 and arm band for US$29. Laser engraving is available for iPod mini for US$19 and can include two lines of text with up to 23 characters per line.

iPod mini can be charged with either the FireWire or USB 2.0 cable and gets up to eight hours of battery life**. iPod mini requires a Mac with a FireWire port and Mac OS X version 10.1.5 or later (Mac OS X v10.2 or later recommended); or a Windows PC with a FireWire or USB 2.0 port, or a Windows-certified FireWire or USB 2.0 card and Windows 2000, XP Home or Professional.

* iTunes Music Store open in US only.
** Battery play time and life span vary by use.

You can find more information on the iPod mini at Apple's Web site. You can order the unit directly from the Apple Store.

The Mac Observer Spin:

We shan't call this a raging success; with the iPod mini being more of a low-end product than the regular iPod, Apple should be able to move more minis than iPods. That's the way the market works. We doubt that will happen, however, precisely because of the 3.75X capacity available for US$50 more.

That leaves the iPod mini in a strange niche, but the success story here is that Apple is moving the units at all. 100,000 pre-orders is nothing to sneeze at, to say the least, especially in the quarter after the holiday season. So, while not a raging success, it's definitely a success, and that should shut most of the (us) naysayers up.

Did you order an iPod mini? Will you?

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