Thread 500. First reactions to the iPod.

One of the advantages of having a site that has been around for 7 years is that we have an archive of user reactions to various releases over the years.

In October of 2001, Apple announced they were holding a special press conference to announce a “breakthrough digital device.”

This coming Tuesday, Apple invites you to the unveiling of a breakthrough digital device, (Hint: it’s not a Mac).

The Mac web was abuzz with rumors of what Apple might be coming out with and on October 23, 2001, Apple released the iPod.

By chance, it was the 500th thread ( on the forum, so many MacRumors users now refer to it simply as “thread 500”. The reaction to the iPod was strong, and not generally positive.

  • Great just what the world needs, another freaking MP3 player. Go Steve! Where’s the Newton?! — WeezerX80
  • hey – heres an idea Apple – rather than enter the world of gimmicks and toys, why dont you spend a little more time sorting out your pathetically expensive and crap server line up? or are you really aiming to become a glorified consumer gimmicks firm? — Pants
  • $400 for an Mp3 Player! I’d call it the Cube 2.0 as it wont sell, and be killed off in a short time…and it’s not really functional. — elitemacor
  • All that hype for an MP3 player? Break-thru digital device? The Reality Distiortion Fieldâ„¢ is starting to warp Steve’s mind if he thinks for one second that this thing is gonna take off.
    — anonymous*

To be fair, some users were very positive and recognized the potential:

  • We live in the YEAR 2001… not 6000 years from now when ridiculously awsome technology will exist. No other mp3 player has a harddrive like this… 5gigs… **** yeah. A rio of the same size offers 64megs. Jesum Crow, get over your moping.. .this is revolutionary…. plus it’s just the beggining. This device litterally bests anything on the market by about 100x — Traveler
  • Apple hit a HOME RUN with this thing, and just as always proved that there’s no one that can make products like them. Way to go Apple — anonymous*

And for full disclosure, here was my response on that day

  • You can waste $200 for a 20gig MP3 player that is too bulky to carry around… or you can spend $400 on one you will actually take with you. (and will work on your mac and itunes) — arn

Of course, the iPod eventually became a breakaway success, now accounting for almost 50% of Apple’s revenue. The iPod evolved over time, and did address many of the concerns that were originally raised. Apple eventually filled out the product line with smaller and more affordable models.

* In 2001, we allowed anonymous posting on the MacRumors Forums

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8 Responses to Thread 500. First reactions to the iPod.

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    Thread 500 is a thread that will live in infamy

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