Wow, my 401(k) is really taking a beating. Thank goodness I invested all that money in Bitcoin! Uhhhhh …
The Plain View
Weeks after introducing the iPhone in January 2007, Steve Jobs visited New York City to show his creation to top editors at a couple of publications. I hosted him for a lunch at Newsweek, and my bosses were dazzled by a hands-on demo of the new device, months before its release. Before Jobs took off, I had a conversation with him and we shared a thought: Wouldn’t it be great to have an iPhone but not the phone? This was because Jobs had explained several times throughout his presentation why certain features were limited by the security and connectivity requirements of the mobile carrier. He said it wouldn’t work and was dismissive.
Later that year, we saw the iPod Touch, an iPhone without iOS. It had a touch screen and, of course a music player among other apps. It was one of countless 180s that Jobs executed in his years at Apple, a skill that freed him from preconceptions. Or was it already underway when we spoke? Whatever. It was just a coincidence that the SIM-less wonder would become the last device to claim the legendary iPod name. As of this week, there is no such device. Apple announced Tuesday that the iPod will be discontinued. You can still get one, but they are limited. The company issued a press release reminiscing on the iPod’s history, which was a rare move.
Including me. There was no way I was going to ignore this event–I wrote the book on the iPod! So even though last week I wrote about Apple losing its soul, this week I am compelled to talk about Apple literally losing its Touch.
What does Apple and the world lose by not having an iPod? This question is anticlimactic because it was not possible to call the Touch an iPod. Its iPodness is due to its iPhone parentage. As all Apple geeks know, Jobs introduced iPhone as three devices in one: a phone, an internet communicator and an iPod. The iPhone’s real secret weapon was its operating system, which used sensors and connectivity to bring new types of apps. Like its sibling phone, the iPod Touch featured music as one function. In the days since Apple’s announcement this week