The iPod is 20 years old: Tony Fadell, the daddy of the walkman, looks back on his creation

On the occasion of the 20th anniversary (which will take place tomorrow) of the first iPod, Tony Fadell returned to CNET on the role he had during the creation. His nickname is “the daddy of the iPod” because he oversaw the project when he worked at Apple.

The iPod is 20 years old, Tony Fadell’s memories

Tony Fadell explains that Apple’s mission was to launch the iPod before Christmas in 2001. He says he really started to think about and develop the device in May of the same year, just five months before its presentation by Steve Jobs. “It was nonstop, seven days a week”, he said.

The daddy of the iPod asked whoever was the boss of Apple if he was ready to go all the way with the player, to the point of creating a family of products. Tony Fadell had been through enough scenarios in which a company canceled the first product nine months later because they didn’t want to invest in the next. For Tony Fadell, it took three generations for the sauce to really take hold. “A lot of people stop halfway through the trip and I wanted to make sure we weren’t going to do this”, did he declare.

When Steve Jobs unveiled the iPod at a press event, the device was not completely finished according to Tony Fadell. Nevertheless, he claims that Steve Jobs distributed this first version of the device to the media present, as well as a collection of 20 CDs with the music that had been pre-loaded on the player.

Today, Tony Fadell says he keeps the first iPod as a sort of time capsule, with the music it contained at the time. “It’s a window of time in my music library and that’s how you leave it. You plug in and you say to yourself: I’m right in the music of the early 2000s. It’s a bit like a great mixtape ”.

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