July 24 is the magic date set for the long-awaited arrival of Apple’s iPod mini, which is capable of holding 1,000 CD-quality songs at any one time. The tiny 4Gb device is expected to retail locally for around €201.50 and will be available in a choice of silver, gold, pink, blue or green colours.
Since launching the original iPod device two years ago, Apple has notched up almost one million sales of its iPod device in the last business quarter alone, making it one of the biggest selling digital music players in the world.
Apple in recent days began the countdown to more than 100m songs that have been downloaded from its iTunes music store in the States. Apple in recent weeks unveiled its iTunes music store to the UK, France and Germany, with a broader pan-European rollout of the service planned for October. Songs on the service will cost just €0.99 and £0.79 sterling per track.
“The iPod mini has been a smash hit in the US, and we’re thrilled to finally be able to offer it to music lovers the world over,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “iPod has changed the way people listen to music and is now the number one digital music player in the world.”
However, the kind of reception iPod mini will get in Europe is unclear in terms of unresolved battery issues surrounding the devices, as well as the delay in opening its iTunes music stores to a European audience already saturated with conflicting media players. These include devices by Creative Labs that are based around the PC, as well as a growing number of online music stores based on the Windows MediaPlayer and the RealPlayer entertainment media formats.
By John Kennedy