Many people have a misconception that an iPod is a general name given to any MP3 player available in the market. However, they need to know that iPod is exclusively a product of the Apple, Inc. brand. You just cannot refer to a music player made by any another company as an iPod.
The Apple iPod
The 'iPod' is a name given to a series of music players manufactured by Apple, Inc. The Apple iPod has been through several modifications since its debut around a decade ago; and it certainly has advanced in features, style, and more importantly the memory storage capacity and sound quality. There are many who use iPods everyday, but do not have any idea as to who invented this. Some believe that the inventor was Steve Jobs.
Who Invented the iPod?
The original concept of the iPod was created by an Englishman named Kane Kramer, in the year 1979. He and his friend James Campbell manufactured this device named IXI for which they registered a patent in England. It had a screen and a button for four-way navigation, like today's iPods. But it couldn't hold music for over a few minutes. In 1988, they were not able to pay the amount for renewal of the worldwide patent, and so the patent expired.
The iPod at Apple
In 2000, Apple got a team of the best designers and engineers to make an MP3 player to trump the rest. The team members were Jonathan Ive, Jon Rubinstein, Michael Dhuey, and Tony Fadell with Steve Jobs as CEO who was managing the whole project. Apple has had the reputation for manufacturing products on its own. However, the case of the iPod was an exception. The design of the iPod belonged to a company named PortalPlayer, and the interface was taken from a company known as Pixo.
Naming the iPod
The name 'iPod' was suggested by a non-Apple employee, Vinnie Chieco, who was a freelance copyrighter. He recommended the name keeping in mind the white EVA pods from the movie 2001: A Space Oddyssey. Later, Apple found out that the name I-Pod had already been trademarked by an Internet kiosk manufacturer. However, Apple bought the trademark name to themselves, changing the name 'I-Pod' to the present 'iPod'.
Till now, there have been many versions of this music player; such as iPod mini, iPod photo, iPod video, iPod shuffle, iPod nano, iPod classic, and finally the iPod touch which is also called the iTouch. I hope, by now you might have got a fair idea regarding who invented the iPod. You can say that the invention of the IXI was a kind of an inspiration for the invention of the iPod.