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IPod

The iPod is a hard-drive-based MP3 player from Apple Computer that is distinguished by its small size, simple user interface based on a central scroll wheel, and fast FireWire connection capable of 400-Mbps data transfers.

First announced in October 2001, the iPod was originally available with a 5-GB hard drive. A 10-GB version was announced in March 2002. In July 2002, a 20-GB model was announced, and both the 10- and 20-GB models were updated with a touch-sensitive (rather than moving) scroll wheel, as well as other upgrades. Firmware upgrades have added some PDA functions.

Two ex-Apple Newton developers founded Pixo [1] (http://www.pixo.com), a company that created some of the software that runs the iPod.

The iPod was originally only compatible with Macintosh computers, but as of mid 2002 has also been available in Windows versions, formatted to FAT32 instead of HFS+. Third-party products also exist to allow the use of Mac-formatted iPods with Windows computers.

On April 28, 2003, Steve Jobs introduced an "ultrathin" iPod series. Unlike former products, there is no distinction between Mac and Windows versions; one product can be connected to either a Mac or a Windows PC. In the latter case, the user needs to buy an extra USB2 cable because the iPod is basically designed to be connected with Firewire, which is a standard port for the Mac but uncommon in Windows PCs.

iTunes is used to manage files on the iPod when connected to a Mac. Musicmatch is used to manage files on the iPod when connected to a Windows PC.

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