Apple Device Lineup/Revamp Imminent As the End of iPod Nears?

As iOS and Mac have become Apple’s most prominent staples, it is apparent that the traditional iPod is being phased-out by touchscreen devices. Though MP3 players of any sort seem to be synonymous with the word “iPod,” Apple may be taking a step away from iPod branding, as one of the first discoveries a user will make as soon as booting into iOS 5 makes obvious.

With iOS 5, the music player on tens of millions of devices will be simply renamed to a generic “Music,” rather than the current iPod name that is commonly associated with Apple. Losing the name may seem like a small deal, but it takes iPod, the word that Apple made famous and frequently appears in iOS on iPhone and iPad, completely out of the devices and thus makes mentioning the iOS music player more bland and mundane.

There are a few possible scenarios as to why Apple is reducing the number of iWords (in an unrelated note, it seems like this article has too many) in iOS. Firstly, the company may want users to shift their idea of iPod back to the device itself rather than the app. If I was going to be bold in my assumptions, it would not be a stretch to say that the full iPod lineup may be redesigned later this year.

Another scenario may be that Apple is beginning to get rid of the iPod and maybe even introduce a new name along with a redesign. It is not implausible to think that this fall could mark the end of the aging iPod OS and a shift towards iOS on every portable device in the company’s catalog.

That leaves us at the iPod touch. Should it still be considered an iPod now that its functionalities stretch much further? There is still a notable amount of average customers who do not know that the iPod touch offers similar features as the iPhone and iPad, or simply that it is not just a MP3 player with a touchscreen. What if Apple expands the iPad lineup so that the iPod touch is rebranded as something along the lines of the iPad Mini?

Some may think that I am taking what appears to be a small change too far, but in reality removing a term so important to and for a company is kind of a big deal. As the iPhone will likely be refreshed alongside other new Apple devices (traditionally iPods), it will be interesting to see if a lineup revamp and reorganization is the reason.