iPod Timeline

It's a music revolution

2001: The iPod arrives

On 23 October the first generation iPod goes on sale, featuring a mechanical scroll wheel.

​After finding existing digital music players "big and clunky or small and useless" with user interfaces that were "unbelievably awful," Apple develops what it describes as "the Walkman of the twenty-first century".

In less than a year it unveils the iPod as a product that Steve Jobs describes as Mac-compatible with a 5 GB hard drive that puts "1,000 songs in your pocket."

2003: A new model

The third generation iPod is launched, the first redesign with an all-touch interface, dock connector, 4-pin remote connector and a slimmer case.

2004: The iPod goes mini

The Mini first generation iPod is launched. This is a smaller model, available in 5 colours, which also introduces a 'Click Wheel'.

2005: More products

The fourth generation iPod is launched as a premium product with a colour screen for the first time and picture viewing capability.

​In addition, this year the fifth generation iPod is launched in black or white with the second full redesign of the product with a slimmer case and larger screen with video playback.

​Plus, the first generation iPod Shuffle is launched. This serves as the product range's new entry-level model and uses flash memory without a screen.

2006: Patent dispute

An iPod patent dispute from 2005 is resolved when Apple and Creative announce a settlement to end the dispute.

As part of this, Apple pays Creative $100 million for a paid-up license to use Creative's awarded patent in all Apple products. As part of the agreement, Apple recoups part of its payment if Creative is indeed successful in licensing the patent and then announces its intention to produce iPod accessories by joining the Made for iPod programme.

2007: Sales milestone

The iPod Touch is launched. This is the first iPod with Wi-Fi and a Multi-touch interface. It also features a Safari browser, and wireless access to the iTunes Store as well as YouTube and is similar in appearance in many ways to the iPhone.

​It is also announced that Apple has sold its one-hundred millionth iPod, making it the biggest-selling digital music player of all time. During April Apple also reports second-quarter revenue of $5.2 billion, of which 32% comes from iPod sales alone.

2008: The Nano gets a makeover

The fourth generation iPod Nano is launched. Reverted to a tall form factor and using an all-aluminium enclosure with nine colour choices, this model also adds an accelerometer for "shake to shuffle" functionality as well as horizontal viewing.

2012: Still in touch

An all-new aluminium design with coloured case options is added to the Touch line. This model features improved cameras along with A5 processor, Siri and a taller 4" Retina Display.