iPod Functions & Purpose

by Sophie Southern

Apple's iPod was originally released in 2001 as an MP3 player that allowed you to carry "1,000 songs in your pocket" and has since evolved into a personal media center with many features. As of 2011, four iPod models are available: iPod classic, iPod touch, iPod nano and iPod shuffle. All iPod models, with the exception of the Shuffle, now play videos on top of music and the iPod touch even features mobile applications like the iPhone. The iPod has many uses, including personal stereo or disc jockey, video player and portable media center.


The primary purpose of the iPod is being able to listen to music anytime, anywhere. The iPod is available with various amounts of storage capacity for music and videos. As of 2011, available models range from 2GB to 160GB of storage. The iPod classic uses a click-wheel menu system and the iPod shuffle uses a four-button system designed to look like the click-wheel. The iPod touch and iPod nano use a multi-touch screen system. All iPods come with Apple's iconic white earbuds.


The iPod has a lithium battery that can be charged via USB cord when connected to a computer or power outlet; lithium batteries in the iPod allow for up to 40 hours of audio play on the go, depending on the model. The fact that any of the iPod models can fit in your pocket makes them extremely portable and easy to take with you, whether you're in the car or walking down the street. The iPod classic, which is the heaviest model, weighs only 4.9 ounces. You can even purchase arm bands and clips to keep your iPod in place while running, playing sports or working out at the gym.


The iPod's original primary use was music and that is still one of the main reasons people purchase iPods. The largest iPod Ccassic model has a storage capacity of 160GB, which can hold approximately 40,000 songs and allows you to keep your entire music collection in your pocket. The iPod features a playlist system, which allows you to organize songs to be played together in groups. Many accessories are available that allow you to use an iPod in your car, home stereo system and with professional audio equipment.

Extra Features

Since its debut in 2001, the iPod has acquired many extra features beyond the scope of just playing music. The iPod classic and nano play video and music; the iPod touch can record and play video in addition to playing music. The iPod classic also allows you to synchronize contacts, calendars and notes with a computer. The iPod nano features a touchscreen with built-in radio, Genius mixes and personal trainer app. The iPod touch uses the iPhone's app system and has many extra features including voice memos, map localization and a world clock.

About the Author

Sophie Southern has been a freelance writer since 2004. Her writing has been featured in "JPG" magazine and on Zlio.com. Southern holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in photography from the School of Visual Arts.

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