iPod sales decline - has the rot set in?

Sometimes it seems like the world is made up of people who have an iPod and people who want an iPod, leaving odd fellows like myself – who neither have nor have ever really wanted one – kinda left out. UK newspaper The Observer has decided to put the electronic cat amongst the PMPigeons with its article Why the iPod is losing its cool, citing declining sales across two consecutive quarters as well as a marked increase in negative feedback in independent research.

Common complaints include locked-down AAC tracks from the iTunes music store, non-replaceable batteries and – most worrying for the Cupertino company – saturation of the market. Carla Avruch of trend-monitoring forecaster The Zandl Group sums it up all too easily:

"Some backlash is against the ubiquity of the iPod – everyone has those white headphones on the train"

A steady increase in cellphones with in-built mp3 players is expected to further nibble away at Apple's share of the PMP market; everyone seems to agree that, if the rot is to be stopped, Steve Jobs will have to pull something pretty damn impressive out of his hat on Tuesday.

Observer: Why the iPod is losing its cool [via LinkMachineGo]