Apple Releases 20 GB, 40 GB iPods, "10,000 Songs In Your Pocket"

In a surprise move, Apple bumped the mid-range and high-end iPod models, just four months after the last revision to the product line. The company has replaced the 15 GB and 30 GB iPods with 20 GB and 40 GB units, respectively. Pricing for the new units remains the same as the previous units (US$399 and US$499), and the units are otherwise the same as their predecessors. The 10 GB entry-level iPod is unchanged. From Apple:

Apple® today announced new 20GB and 40GB models of its best-selling iPod™ digital music player. The new 40GB iPod holds up to 10,000 CD-quality songs (playing each song back-to-back takes a month) in a stunning enclosure that is lighter and thinner than two CDs. iPods are available in three models: a 10GB model for just $299 (US), the new 20GB model for $399 (US) and the new 40GB model for $499 (US); and offer the perfect combination of ease of use, storage capacity, audio performance and ultra-portable design.

iPod is the only portable music player with Appleis patent pending Auto-Sync, an innovative feature that automatically downloads your entire digital music library onto iPod and keeps it up-to-date whenever the iPod is plugged into your Mac® or Windows PC using FireWire® or USB 2.0. The ultra-portable iPods are designed with a solid-state "no moving parts" navigation wheel and backlit buttons for precise, effortless navigation through thousands of songs; an elegant dock for easy syncing and charging with an audio line out for quick connection to a home stereo or powered speakers; an "On-The-Go" playlist so users can build a playlist right on their iPod; a customizable main menu so users can promote the features they use most often to their top level menu; and a rechargeable lithium-ion battery for more than eight hours of continuous music.

Pricing & Availability
New iPods for Mac and Windows PCs are available today for a suggested retail price of $299 (US) for the 10GB iPod, $399 (US) for the 20GB iPod and $499 (US) for the 40GB iPod through the Apple Store®, Appleis retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers. Laser engraving is available for $19 (US) and can include two lines of text with up to 27 characters per line. The new iPods support high-speed syncing via USB 2.0 with Windows; a separate USB 2.0 cable.

All iPod models include earbud headphones, an Apple iPod power adapter, a FireWire cable and a 4-pin-to-6-pin iPod FireWire adapter. 20GB and 40GB iPod models also include the iPod Dock, carrying case and wired remote; these optional accessories can be ordered for 10GB iPod models through the Apple Store. iPod requires a Mac with FireWire port, Mac® OS X version 10.1.5 or later (Mac OS X v10.2 or later recommended) or a Windows PC with FireWire or USB 2.0 port, or Windows-certified FireWire or USB 2.0 card, Windows Me, Windows 2000, or Windows XP Home or Professional. A CD containing iTunes* for Mac OS X and MUSICMATCH Jukebox Plus 7.5 software is included with all iPod purchases.

*Some iPod features require a Mac and iTunes.

You can find more information on the new iPods at Appleis Web site, or you can order directly at The Apple Store (or TMOis affiliate Mac retailers).

Also announced today were revised iMacs.