10/23/2013 11:21 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Happy Birthday iPod! (And Good-Bye)

Could this be the end of the iPod?

Wednesday is the iPod's 12th birthday, and it may also mark the close of the music device's reign. There hasn't been a new iPod released in more than a year and if there were going to be a new iPod, it probably would have been released Tuesday, when the company unveiled two new iPads, a new OS and new computers.

There have been 24 different iPods released over the years. Remember when you first heard that lovely "click" of the iPod's white wheel? Remember when you first listened to your favorite song through the now-iconic white earbuds? Remember the ads featuring silhouettes dancing to pop songs?

ipod birthday

The original iPods seem clunky now and Apple worked hard to slim them down over the years.

ipod birthday

The first iPods came in 5 GB and 10 GB versions, enough for 1,000 and 2,000 songs and nothing more. No games, no fancy graphics, just songs. Today's iPods go all the way up to 160 GB (around 40,000 songs), have cameras, retina displays, WiFi, apps and more.

When the iPod came out in 2001, it was Apple's only non-computer device. Now the iPhone and iPad can do everything the iPod does and more. The iPod's sales have been plummeting for a few years, and as of last June, sales had fallen 32 percent year-over-year.

Still, the iPod will always have a special place in our hearts as one of Apple's first world-changing innovations. It turned a computer company into a lifestyle brand.

Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the future of the iPod. And for now you can still buy a range of iPods: From the $49 shuffle to the 160 GB Classic, which costs $249.

It's been a good ride, iPod. We'll create an amazing playlist in your honor!



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