How Low Will the iPod Price Go?

How much cheaper are these dang iPods gonna get?
Find out after the jump.

First, a chart detailing each generation of iPod with its price, size and cost per gig.

chart.jpg Courtesy of Apple Matters.

Next, a graph.

graph.jpg Courtesy of Apple Matters.

Now, you solve the math problem. Based on the information above, how many gigs will gen 6 hold, what is its price point and cost per gig?

Yes, graphing calculators and any study materials you may have brought with you are allowed.

How much cheaper is the iPod going to get? [Apple Matters]


Edit Your Comment

  1. RandomHookup says:

    Is the x-axis in months or some other unit?

  2. Tex Texerson says:

    That graph sucks. The X-axis corresponds to the table above — Point 17 is the 17th item in the table (5th gen 60GB). It needs separate lines for low-end, mid- and high-end iPods with the “generation” as the X-axis.

  3. geek 101 says:

    i think that this would be more acurate if it were labeld properly thats rule number 3 in math right after use pencil and the claculator is your friend ….or wht ever the hell i was ment to learn in math

  4. CMPalmer says:

    If my math is correct, eventually they will have infinite storage and be free. Is that what everyone else got?

  5. SamC says:

    Looks like someone skimped on their research. Where’s the ipod photo? I’ve got a 30gb model. And I’m fairly certain there was a 60 GB model.

    There were more like 6 versions of the 4th generation ipods. The original monochromatic screens, the ipod photo, and then the 4G with color screens.

    And I agree with Tex about breaking up the graph. It’d help a lot.

  6. SamC says:

    Oh. RH, x-axis is the position of the item on the table above, so the two 5G ipods are items 16 & 17.

  7. Ben Popken says:

    It’s all part of the puzzle…

  8. GenXCub says:

    The thing that one must be careful of is to look at the trends. The $ per GB is flattening out. As X approaches infinity, if the Value doesn’t go below $1, the iPods will become infinite in price!

  9. mrscolex says:

    For some reason I suspect that the generation 6 iPod isn’t going to go down in price per GB, given the design of the device. I also suspect that the storage to price ratio will reach a plataeu, not necessarily by the physical limitations, but by demand limitations.

    My theory is that as storage increases, iPod retention will increase. The third party market for iPod battery replacement services will suddenly boom as the 70 or so percent of people who don’t buy the extended apple care plans for their iPod’s realize that they have a perfectly fine working device with 50% of it’s storage still available that won’t turn on– and since their manufacturer’s warranty has expired there will be nothing that stops them from going the third-party route for battery replacements.

    I’ll give you an example: I still have a 3rd generation iPod 15GB iPod and I still haven’t hit the music cap on storage space. I won’t replace it until I do because as long as I’ve got a car charger and a stereo input for my iPod, I’ve still got a use for it.

    It’s silly to judge where an iPod trend will go based on GB because if you read between the lines, you’ll slyly note that with each generation little baby features are added in. When they hit the ceiling of those features (the final frontier: iPod DVR’s for your TV and an apple broadband subscription based TV service) then thats when everything will truly plataeu.

  10. GenXCub says:

    Either that or it will go in 2 simultaneous directions:

    1) iPod Mobile – We already carry around phones, and the Motorola ROKR has started the trend of mobile phones with iTunes connection for music. Apple will brand a mobile phone, assuming there isn’t some non-compete agreement with Motorola.

    2) iMacPod Media Server – the Home media edition of mac/ipod that is meant to integrate the home TV/Stereo/DVD/DVR experience.

    Both of these are already out there in some form… it’s just up to Mr. Jobs to make it white and put a fruit on it, integrate the two, and make it look minimalist, and to tell people how elite they are if they get it.

  11. mrscolex says:


    I’ve often wondered why the cell phone and the iPod hasn’t merged more successfully in the past. I think of the ROKR as a strange experiment, but with weird offputting results– ie: boingboing reporting that the ROKR had an internal limit, but worse yet:….

    It seems to me that giving mobile access to the iTMS would make a lot of sense.

    I think you make an astute point though, the iPod is certainly going to branch off in two directions: home entertainment, and mobile entertainment.

  12. Brian Gee says:

    I’ll tell you why there isn’t a more successful merger of an iPod with a phone: because Steve Jobs is a pussy!

    They could do it. Easily. It not like there’s a technological barrier to it. Tape an iPod nano to the back of a RAZR or SLVR and you can see its possible.

    He just doesn’t want to piss off the Carriers, who are too busy finding ways to nickel and dime us (ok, $2 and $3 us) to listen to what their customers want, by introducing anything that might wipe away all that no-effort revenue that only exists because a desirable combination of an iPod and a phone simply doesn’t exist.

    Steve Jobs could wipe out a multi-billion dollar revenue stream overnight, simply by selling an iPod phone. To everyone. Seriously. Practically everyone would buy one. Or the inevitable knock offs and imports that are just waiting for the first one to hit the US.

    They just need to get on an Edge or GPRS network and it can connect right to the itunes store, and get regular music on your ipod, instead of a 10-sec ringtone versio nfor 3x the price.

    See! A whole multi-billion revenue stream, that appeared OUT OF NOWHERE about 2 years ago, suddenly vanishes. And rightly so. The cellcos need to thank everyone for their 2 year bubble, then get back to reality. Ripping people off for something that is built into the phone but you, the carrier, forcibly disable is not a good business model. Quit trying to see who’s best at screwing the customer and actually do something to move your industry forward!

    But anyway….

    Apple can “make” us buy a new one every few years by adding new, compelling features in the new versions. Like they always do.

    And they really don’t even need to come up with anything that’s actually NEW!

    They could integrate stuff they already have, like bits of the NewtonOS, Apple Remote Desktop (remote control your Mac at home from wherever!), that full-screen touchscreen ipod patent dealy, apple remote.

    They could add wifi, and your phone could automatically switch its data channels to your Wireless LAN when you get home. Add a checkbox on “Airport Admin Utility” that says:

    [ ] Share my wireless with other iPhones

    and other people could get high speed data on their iPhone when they visit you.

    The only thing holding it back is “agreements” with the cellcos who don’t want anyone “using their lines for free”.

    I want a good Apple iPod+PDA+Phone combo. What I do NOT want is one that sucks (like everything we have now in US mobile services).

  13. AFD says:

    6G High-capacity iPod (80GB) = $400
    6G Low-capacity iPod (40GB) = $300

    7G High-capacity iPod (100GB) = $400
    7G Low-capacity iPod (60GB) = $300

    8G iPod (100GB, more features) = $300
    8G Nano (20GB w/flash memory) = $300

  14. mrscolex says:


    As an owner of a Treo 650 I hear your pain. The Treo gets great reviews from the numerous magazine lapdogs that exist but I view it as a cumbersome piece of equipment that is ultimately broken. The interface is clumsy, you can’t use mp3’s as a custom ringtones, you’ve only got 20M of internal memory (is that a joke in the iPod era? They’re deliberately trying to screw us!). The web browser is broken, VersaMail crashes on you, and Palm OS 5 was so shitty that it was even abandond by Palm themselves in the Treo 700.

    Just like in politics there are far too many chefs in the kitchen. A great smart phone will never be designed with an internal hard drive as long as the [SD/Compact Flash/Etc..] card memory keeps a hold on the testicles of the hardware designers.

    But for now I can always dream– I can dream that cell phone carriers will lose their arrogance in pretending that they can be media couriers, while playfully subsidizing the cost on the people who don’t need the services.

    Let Apple bring on the revolution! Viva La Apple! Let them be our harbingers of cell phone justice. I don’t see it happening; Steve Jobs may be powerful, but can he take on Verizon? Even if Verizon is the equivalent of a inept bumbling paraplegic Apple couldn’t fight Verizon.

  15. Tex Texerson says:

    The latest iPods won’t get any cheaper because Apple will keep coming up with more reasons for us to buy new ones. If we somehow hit a limit in how big a hard drive can get, or Apple finally managed to fit every last bit of content at the highest possible resolution onto an iPod, then maybe they’d start to drop in price.. At least until they release the next generation which can transform into a jetpack or laser weapon, or they add blue LED’s. Or better yet, turquoise LED’s.. the LED’s of the FUTURE.