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iWatch May Replace iPod in Apple's Lineup

Apple's iPod music players could be going the way of the Dodo. Analysts expect sales of the iPod will decline as a result of consumers purchasing the rumored iWatch as a substitute.

Christopher Caso of Susquehanna Financial Group believes the iWatch "would essentially replace the iPod in the consumer portion of (Apple's) product lineup," citing recent talks with sources from Asian supply chains. It's possible that the watch takes over some of the iPod's functions, which include storing and playing music, movies and apps. 

MORE: Smartwatch Buying Guide: 8 Things You Need to Know

Caso told Barron's Tech Trader Daily, "While we don't expect (Apple) to discontinue iPod for some time, we also don't expect an iPod refresh this year." This is in line with a statement from Apple CEO Tim Cook in an earnings call earlier this year, saying that the "iPod is a declining business."

Apple is rumored to start production of the iWatch in the fourth quarter of 2014, a projection that Caso says now carries more weight thanks to checks from a March trip to Asia. Two models of the iWatch are expected -- 1.3-inch or 1.5-inch face. We also expect to see an LG-made flexible OLED display used as the canvas for an iOS interface. Previous reports also indicate the iWatch will feature a slap bracelet design that will hug your wrist.

If Apple does debut the iWatch later this year, it will face some serious competition. In addition to existing smartwatches such as the Pebble Steel, the Samsung Galaxy Gear 2 and Gear Fit, the iWatch has to contend with Motorola's Moto 360 and LG's G Watch. The latter two will be powered by Google's Android Wear system for wearable devices. We look forward to watching Apple battle its rivals for smartwatch supremacy.

Follow Cherlynn Low at @CherlynnLow and on Google+. Follow Tom's Guide at @tomsguide, on Facebook and on Google+.

  • BranFlake5
    Doesn't make sense to me. I want the classic iPod to be remade and brought back. You can get 1TB 1.8" drives, 3 inch oled 720p displays, why not put them in a aluminum chassis? and the click wheel, either get rid of the patent or keep using it, Apple.
    Reply
  • Haravikk
    Given the size of the iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle I can see an iWatch replacing those if the pricing is right. Personally I'm hoping the iWatch will only optionally have a strap (so you can still clip it on if you prefer), or at least can be worn on the upper arm to avoid a dangling headphone wire. A model with limited storage would do as an iPhone/iPad accessory-only device, while versions with more memory can replace the smallest iPods. Beyond that, I think it makes more sense to combine the iPod Touch and iPod Classic; e.g - make the iPod Touch a more distinct device, perhaps with a curved back designed for gripping, and giving it the room to fit a 1.8" hard drive for capacity, basically make a real focus on capacity and gaming and distinguishing it from just being an iPhone for people with no friends to call (joking).
    Reply
  • WithoutWeakness
    Doesn't make sense to me. I want the classic iPod to be remade and brought back. You can get 1TB 1.8" drives, 3 inch oled 720p displays, why not put them in a aluminum chassis? and the click wheel, either get rid of the patent or keep using it, Apple.
    There's less and less of a market for the iPod now that iPhones and iPads are so prevalent. The iPod market has been steadily declining over the past few years with a 51% drop year-over-year this past quarter. People are still buying them but most people with a smartphone will use that for media rather than rely on a second device. If you need more storage than an iPhone or iPad can muster then you're much better off purchasing a 1TB wireless external hard drive than you are buying an iPod to carry your bulk media files. A 1TB wireless drive can be found for ~$150, which is the same price as a 16GB iPod Nano and $100 cheaper than a 160GB iPod Classic while offering much more storage capacity and the ability to stream that content to multiple devices at once.
    Reply