If you’ve been planning on buying an iPod Classic or iPod Shuffle, now would be a good time to do so.

Last night, TUAW corroborated an earlier report from 9to5Mac that Apple is looking to discontinue the iPod Classic and iPod Shuffle. The “product transition” that Apple hinted at during its last earnings call is apparently within the iPod product line. TUAW’s source has said that Apple will axe the two iPods this year, presumably at Tuesday’s event

Apple’s Fall event has been devoted to the iPod in the past, but this year will revolve around a new iPhone. It’s expected that Apple will at least introduce a minor refresh of the iPod touch with a white color option and upgraded specs. The rest of the iPod line, including the iPod Nano, will likely never see a refresh again.

It’s not surprising that Apple would want to discontinue the Shuffle and the Classic. An article on CNET suggests that next week would be the optimal time for Apple to begin phasing out products in its iPod product line:

“For starters, this year (October 24) marks the 10-year anniversary of the iPod. That’s quite an achievement, but it’s also a nice place to bookend things. I can imagine Apple saying, “It had a great run, now go buy an iPhone.”

Also, the iPod just isn’t the moneymaker it once was for Apple. In the fourth quarter of 2010, iPod sales made up just 8 percent of Apple’s total revenue, and they have been in a steady decline ever since the iPhone’s introduction.”

The iPod touch is Apple’s money maker within the iPod line, so it makes sense for Apple to focus on selling that product as the premium option, with the iPod Nano still available as the cheap option for customers that just want to play music.

At the iPod event last year, Steve Jobs said that Apple was redesigning “every model” of the iPod. The iPod Classic wasn’t mentioned at the event once. Apple hasn’t considered the Classic as part of its iPod line for a long time already.

The Shuffle just doesn’t make sense in light of how cheap the Nano is and what non-iPhone owners want from an iPod in the first place. The Shuffle is a better watch than iPod.

TUAW is usually tight-lipped about Apple rumors, so we have reason to believe that the site has certainty about this news.

How do you feel about Apple discontinuing the iPod Classic and iPod Shuffle? Is it a smart move?

  • Irv

    I can’t see the shuffle being ditched unless they slash the nano price massively. In my experience it’s a great almost disposable music player for kids and stands as an effective “gateway iPod” to get Apple hardware into the hands of people early where they then move onto the touch and ultimately iPhones.

    Also should add it’s the nano that is used as a watch not the shuffle 🙂 the shuffle would make a pretty useless watch.

  • Andy

    The thing about the Classic that I like is the 160 GB capacity. I hope that they make a Touch with more capacity if they discontinue the Classic.

  • Kat

    Lol. Irv is right about the shuffle useless watch, rofl

    I hate it that they are ditching the classic. I have been looking to replace my 80 gb iPod classic for a long time but I haven’t because I was hoping they would renew the 160 gb’s one.

    It is ok that they take out some products but they should offer a new one with the same abilities. I don’t think they would make a 160 gb iPod touch or iPhone and if they do it would be super expensive. I have a 16 gb iPhone but those 16 gb are for pics, videos and apps, I want another device to listen all my music and the 80 gb is not enough!!!!!

    I’m kind of angry right now and don’t want to buy an old or discontinued iPod ò_ó

  • Bobby

    Is it cuz Justin bieber won’t buy one and use it?

    • Ken

      You mean bieber and cook is what?

  • DH88

    “The rest of the iPod line, including the iPod nano, will never see a refresh again”.

    Really? What is your evidence for saying that the nano is going to be axed following this product cycle? This is utterly baseless speculation that, quite frankly, doesn’t make a lick of sense. Apple is a company that has found enormous success in the development and deployment of touch based devices. Therefore, the discontinuation of the shuffle and the classic makes sense, as it leaves Apple with only touch based devices. This is not to mention the reputable rumors coming from 9to5 Mac and TUAW corroborating this discontinuation. The iPod Touch is certainly the flagship iPod and has been since it’s initial release, but for apple to discontinue the nano would leave them with no inexpensive entry model for their iPod lineup. Therefore, I am calling you out Alex, because you have no evidence suggesting that the nano will be discontinued following this product cycle and to do so would make no sense for Apple from a business perspective. The writers of iDB need to stop injecting every thought or rumor that they come across into every article they write. (This is especially true following the speculation yesterday that only one new iPhone would be released due to the notification badge on the invitation. Worse yet was that in a subsequent article, this speculation was passed off as absolute fact.)

    • How does it not make sense? Based on your own logic, the Nano has no place in Apple’s lineup due to its lack of a touch screen. Do I think that Apple will totally axe the Nano next week? No. Apple never abruptly “axes” anything. It will be like the Classic: a device that sits in the back of the iPod line for possibly 1-2 years before the last bit of inventory is sold off and people have moved on.

      Rumors are saying that something in the iPod/iPhone lineup is about to become a lot cheaper, and that Apple is about to have a new entry device. Whether that’s a 3G iPod touch or not, we don’t really know. What we do know is that Apple is all about iOS, the iPhone, and the iPod touch — not the Nano, and certainly not the Shuffle or Classic. Take a 10,000 ft step back and look at all of the rumors. You’ll see that there’s no room for the Nano moving forward, and that Apple has something huge up its sleeve for iOS hardware.

      And as far as “injecting every thought or rumor” into “every article we write” in regards to the iPhone invite from yesterday, actually read the subsequent articles and you’ll see that the argument for only one iPhone next week is based off dozens and dozens of corroborating rumors that have been circulating since the beginning of this year. The dissection piece on the invite was purely speculation, as Jeff made clear.

      • DH88

        Do you even know what the iPod nano is in its current incarnation? It has a 1.54″ touch screen… How is it that you right for an Apple heavy blog and have no idea about this? Therefore, keeping the nano is in line with Apple’s touch-centric approach. Do some research (i.e. actually have some understanding of what current devices are out there) before making wild claims.

        Going back to this single iPhone debate, iDB has published numerous articles supporting a two device approach and only recently has been speculating that a single new device would emerge. Furthermore, my issue is that the article that Sebastien wrote yesterday states, “And according to the invite, the company will only announce one iPhone.” with a link back to Jeff’s article. A more appropriate link would have been to a landing page containing the articles outlining all of the single-device rumors. That’s not what it was though.

      • DH88

        *right should actually be write

      • +1

        Thanks for clarifying things up.

  • Matt

    People actually used the shuffle? I honestly don’t think I have ever heard anyone say they own or seen anyone using one before.

    As for the classic, I’ve had nearly all the generations and loved them. Kinda sad to see them go. Unless Apple introduced an iTouch (what it should be called :P) with a massive capacity, I see the classic cancellation as a bad choice.

  • Sarag

    a lot of people use small mp3 players to listen to music while they go jogging or to the gym. if they kill both the nano and shuffle, they a lot of customers because ipod touch and iphones are way to big and heavy to bring with you.. and what would happen to the nike + ipod thing ?
    Killing the shuffle is the right move to make but I think they will keep the nano, but maybe not refresh it

    • Good point. They’ll keep the Nano around for awhile, but you’re right. Something will have to change.

  • Free

    Would like to see a new Nano with access to Cloud, so something small and affordable but can sync wirelessly and stream music in my iTunes. Keep it touch screen.

  • yes I think it’s very smart move .

  • The iPod classic stands out for its huge capacity for true music lovers like myself. They better make one of the other iDevices with a larger capacity or something if they discontinue it. Apple is always making such silly decisions it seems.


    Whu would they kill the classic?! With it’s big space and stuff, it needs to stay. F*** the new iphone, F*** the new nano. stop coming out with new gadgets. new stuff is great and all, but keep the classics. as they say, new friends are silver, but old ones are golden.

  • Kevin Silvestris

    Apple to drop its iPod Classic, iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle digital music players from the lineup for good, so they can concentrate on its iPod Touch, iPhone and iPad lines