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Apple Responds To iPod Competition

2/23/2005 12:32:00 PM Eastern

Cupertino, Calif. — Apple responded to growing competition in the portable MP3 market by introducing a quartet of hard-disk-drive (HDD) iPods at lower prices. Some offer longer battery lives than their predecessors.

Two new iPod minis more than double battery life to 18 hours, from 8 hours, and bring Apple’s opening HDD price point to a suggested $199 for a 4GB model that replaces a current $249 4GB model. A second new mini adds the new disk capacity of 6GB. It retails for a suggested $249. Color choices are silver, pink, blue and green.

Two other new models are iPod Photos, one with a new disk capacity of 30GB. The other iPod Photo’s capacity is 60GB. Suggested retails are $349 and $449, respectively, compared to the current 40GB and 60GB iPod Photos at $499 and $599, respectively. The new models add personal information manager (PIM) functions, such as contact lists and calendar, and add an optional voice-recorder attachment. Battery life remains at 15 hours for music playback.