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The music lives on, Apple:

iPod touch will be available while supplies last.

“Music has always been part of our core at Apple, and bringing it to hundreds of millions of users in the way iPod did impacted more than just the music industry — it also redefined how music is discovered, listened to, and shared,” said Greg Joswiak, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing.

“Today, the spirit of iPod lives on. We’ve integrated an incredible music experience across all of our products [...] there’s no better way to enjoy, discover, and experience music.”

Interesting that Joswiak paints Apple's move to streaming as a natural progression of the "spirit" of the iPod, and claims there's no superior method to enjoying music. I personally believe it's anything but.

In my experience, there's an IKEA Effect-esque way in which manually curating a physical (albeit still digital) music collection makes me connect with the music more. Though I'm not hoping for a return to manually adding artwork to hundreds of albums, a happy medium between that era and the current Paradox of Choice landscape seems like the ideal scenario.

Even just taking time to be truly offline and listen to music feels like I'm fighting against the tide in recent years. I know Spotify et al. have offline modes that let you sync music for times when you're without phone signal, but the fact this is only possible on devices that have wireless capabilities anyway makes the whole real point of "offline" — not being bombarded with notifications, social feeds, and the like — moot, in my opinion. It feels like more of a crutch for people who have their entire music library in a streaming service, and want to be able to have their music uninterrupted when disconnected from a server. Shame that wasn't a solved problem decades ago... 😉

Maybe this is just a "golden age" old man rant. Regardless of how you feel about Apple and Co. leaning into streaming and its impact on both the production and consumption of music, Joswiak is right that the iPod brought music to the masses — and I'm sad to see it go.