The original iPod was designed, engineered, and released in the same year. Ex-Apple SVP Tony Fadell revealed the staggering timeline to Stripe CEO Patrick Collison.
iPod Designed, Engineered And Released in Under a Year
In a tweet, Mr. Collison revealed that, according to Mr. Fadell, the first call relating to what became the iPod happened in the first week of January 2001. The device shipped to customers in the first week of November that same year.
Mr. Fadell joined Apple later in January 2001. When he arrived to lead the project, the idea simply was for a hard-drive based MP3 player. There was “No team, prototype, designs, nothing,” according to Mr. Fadell (via 9to5Mac). The idea of the iPod was only pitched to Steve Jobs in March, eight months before it shipped.