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Design Flaw Shelves New iPod Amoeba
CUPERTINO, Calif. (CAP) - Apple Corp. has announced that the 2007 release of its newest music player, the iPod Amoeba, has been delayed indefinitely due to a flaw in the overall design. Company officials are hesitant to speculate when the Amoeba may be ready for the consumer market.
"We really have no idea how this even got out of R&M," said Apple chief designer Jonathan Ive. "We will be issuing refunds to everyone who pre-ordered the Amoeba because at this time, we can't even say if it will be available at all in 2007."
At issue is the basic design of Apple's smallest iTunes player, a 5/8 inch square technological marvel that measures only 1/16 of an inch thick. The problem is that it is too small for the smallest audio adapter, a 1/8 inch plug, which means there's no way to actually listen to the Amoeba.
"They say it holds ten hours of music, but it doesn't matter if it holds ten days of music if you can't listen to it," said industry analyst Josh Carson. "I think Apple needs to rethink their time-to-market strategy because this one is going to take a lot to recover from."
Apple officials acknowledged that their lack of forethought will hit them in the pocketbook, but they don't believe there will be any deleterious effect to their image in the marketplace. They said they've based that estimate on internet chatter from sites like Digg, SlashDot and EnGadget.
"You know, the new Shuffle's great, but it's just too big," said Vallco Mall shopper Pete Hearst. "I mean, what if I don't have anywhere to clip it to? I was really looking forward to getting one of those Amoebas."
Apple shares dropped 13 cents to $86.31 before the opening bell today on word of the delay. However, investors said they don't expect the news to be of any further detriment to Apple stock due to brisk sales of Apple's other iPod devices.