iPod's Halo Effect
The iPod's success is helping not just Apple but a whole lot of other companies that make accessories for the world's most popular MP3 player. The accessories include FM transmitters, speakers and now even clothing specially designed to accomodate the iPod. I read a little while back on BusinessWeek that some innovative entrepreneurs were even making an iPod-holder designed like a cross to attract the gospel-loving, staunch Christians! According to this article, the portable digital player accessory revenue was $412 million in the US in the first 9 months of 2005. And most of it is probably due to the iPod, which is credited with creating an entire ecosphere around it.
Since I used to listen to songs mostly when driving, I was initially looking at buying an FM transmitter for my iPod. But I recently bought iHome's IH5, a clock radio for the iPod. The iPod docks onto it so that you can then play songs from the iPod through its speakers. The sound quality is good(nobody is gonna mistake it for a Bose though!) and it more than replaces my old Boombox since I don't have to keep changing CDs now.
Its pretty amazing how the iPod a lowly MP3 player, is slowly making other everyday items obsolete with the help of such accessories. With its different avatars like the iPod Photo, iPod Video, etc. and the multitude of accessories, the iPod can now replace the walkman/discman, the car stereo, the boombox, the photo album and theoretically, even the TV. The day may not be far when a person can exist completely in the iPod ecosphere!