Who says Apple doesn’t care about backward compatibility?

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Who says Apple doesn't care about backwards compatibility? Photo: Matthew Pearce
Who says Apple doesn't care about backward compatibility? Photo: Matthew Pearce

Apple has a reputation for not being afraid to move on.

Buy a new iPhone, and you’re lucky if iOS supports your device just four years down the line. Buy a Mac? Apple’s constantly making older models obsolete with every new OS X release. Heck, there’s an entire ocean of old PowerPC apps that were orphaned by Apple when they migrated to Intel.

Yet Apple isn’t without loyalty to the gadgets that once made it great. Case in point: If you plug a first-gen iPod into your modern-day Mac, iTunes 12 will still sync with it.

Donate your old iPod to help people suffering from Alzheimer’s

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iPods can play an extraordinary part in helping people suffering from dementia.
iPods can play an extraordinary part in helping people suffering from dementia.

As tech fans, it’s easy to take a forward-looking view of technology: constantly excited about the next iPhone or smart wearable, while our old gadgets gather dust in the back of a cupboard somewhere.

Hoping to reach some of those tech owners, the SIU School of Medicine in Illinois is currently requesting old iPods as part of what it calls the “Music and Memory” program to help people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia.

As the medical school explains it, the iPods are used for a form of musical therapy designed to help calm patients and make them happier and more sociable by playing music from their younger years.

Rest in Pod: Apple no longer reporting iPod sales

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Dressing up as an iPod becomes a Halloween sensation. Photo: Maria Ly/Flickr CC
If we were going to the iPod's funeral, this is how we'd dress up. Photo: Maria Ly/Flickr CC

Although the iMac generated a whole lot of buzz for Apple upon Steve Jobs’ return in the late 1990s, it was the debut of the iPod in October 2001 that truly dispatched Apple on its path to astronomical levels of success: a path it hasn’t strayed from in the near decade-and-a-half since then.

Which is why it’s kind of sad to realize that on Apple’s most recent quarterly filing, the “little MP3 player that could” has been unceremoniously shuffled (get it?) into the “Other Products” category, along with such “hobby” project as Apple TV.

To be fair, Apple had warned everyone this would happen back in October 2014, but seeing the iPod no longer mentioned with Apple’s flagship products is a reminder of how the once mighty have fallen — and how much Apple’s core business has changed since the millennium.

Alas, poor iPod! We knew you well!

Father of the iPod tasked with saving Google Glass from extinction

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After failing to garner consumer interest for nearly two years, the fate of Google Glass is now in the hands of former Apple executive Tony Fadell. The Glass Explorer program is also being shut down on January 19th, which means it will be impossible to buy the $1,500 headset commercially.

Fadell, whose claim to fame at Apple was leading the development of the original iPod, joined Google last February when Nest was acquired for $3.2 billion. Now Google Glass is being moved out of the experimental Google X division and placed under Fadell’s leadership.

The development of Glass hasn’t been halted, but the move signals the trouble Google has had gaining momentum with the project.

Apple wins at last: iTunes DRM was ‘genuine improvement,’ jury finds

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Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

The verdict is in, and after nearly a decade of legal wrangling, Apple has prevailed in the class-action lawsuit seeking over $1 billion in damages by iPod owners who claimed the company conspired to kill competing music services by adding restrictions to iTunes.

The eight-person jury found Apple not liable of adding DRM restrictions as an anti-competitive move toward rival players like RealNetworks from 2006 to 2009. The Verge reports that the jury unanimously delivered the verdict this morning and said that iTunes 7.0 is a “genuine product improvement” that increased security for consumers.