iPod is a brand of portable media players that is designed and marketed by Apple and was launched on October 23, 2001. Since October 2004, iPod sales have dominated the market for digital music players in the United States.
Devices in the iPod range are primarily digital music players, designed around a central click wheel — although the iPod shuffle has buttons only.
The full-sized model stores media on an internal hard drive, while the smaller iPod nano and iPod shuffle use flash memory. Like many digital audio players, iPods can also serve as external data storage devices.
In addition to playing music, iPods with display screens can display calendars, contact information, and text files, and play a limited range of video games. Models introduced in 2004 include the ability to display photos and the fifth-generation iPod, introduced in 2005, can additionally play video files. In January 2007, Apple announced the iPhone, combining the features of a video-capable iPod with integrated mobile phone and mobile internet capabilities.
Apple's iTunes software is used for transferring music (as well as photos, videos, games, contacts and calendars, for models that support those features). As a free jukebox application, iTunes stores a comprehensive library of music on the user's computer and can play, burn, and rip music from a CD. It can also sync photos and videos.
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