MP3 player with a hard drive – that’s so 1999

Laura Ries writes about the Apple brand:

“Then Apple introduced the iPod, the first MP3 player with a hard drive.”

It’s not the first time I’ve read this misconception. In August, Jan Gradvall wrote an article in Dagens Nyheter about the iPod:

“iPod is the first technical gadget that makes it possible for someone to carry around a piece of his cultural heritage.”

Although he doesn’t say it explicitly, I interpret him as saying that the iPod was the first mp3 player that could store thousands of songs (he goes on to talk about that later in the article). Either way, the iPod was launched in October 2001 and is not the first hard disk based mp3 player. Instead, a product called the Personal Jukebox was introduced in November 1999, two years prior to the birth of the iPod. Other brands launched similar products in 2000 and 2001, like Creative’s Nomad Jukebox that was introduced in November 2000 (I bought one myself). The iPod is undoubtedly the most successful mp3 player ever, but it was not the first to sport a hard drive.