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Last Updated: Wednesday, 18 February, 2004, 11:00 GMT
Thousands rush to order iPod mini
Apple's iPod and iPod mini
Apple has sold over 2 million iPods
Apple says it has had more than 100,000 pre-orders for its newest digital music player, the iPod mini.

The credit card size player can store about 1,000 songs in its internal 4GB memory, and comes in five colours.

The little sister of the successful iPod goes on sale in the US on Friday, and the rest of the world in April.

More than 2 million iPods have been sold, but it faces stiff competition in 2004 from others like Dell, Digital Networks, Creative Labs and Archos.

"IPod mini broadens the market for iPod by competing head-on with flash-based players," Phil Schiller, Apple's head of worldwide product marketing said.

Mini bet

Although it costs about $50 (26) more than a 256MB flash-based music player, Apple said it can store 16 times the amount of music.

Flash-based players are different because they use flash memory, like a memory stick or card, which is the type used for storage in digital cameras and video game consoles.

Apple's iPod mini
Storage: 4GB
Battery life: 8 hours
Display: 1.67-inch greyscale LCD with LED backlight
Ports Dock connector, remote connector, stereo minijack
Connectivity: FireWire 400 and USB 2.0 through dock connector
Audio support: AAC, MP3, MP3 VBR, Audible, AIFF (Mac only) and WAV
Size: 3.6 by 2.0 by 0.5 inches
Weight: 3.6 ounces
Ipod mini hits US shop shelves with a price tag $249 (130), but prices look set to be higher than exchange rates suggest when it goes on sale in the UK.

Apple chief Steve Jobs announced the tiny iPod's birth at the Macworld conference in San Francisco earlier in January.

It is betting on the iPod mini to help maintain its position at the top of the MP3 player maker.

Currently, it has a 31% share of the portable digital jukebox market, but rival players are due for release this year which may challenge that dominance.

But Apple's dominance has also been strengthened by its successful iTunes Music Store, which is currently only available in the US.

It offers songs for 99 cents (60 pence) each, which can be downloaded to Windows or Mac computers and iPods.

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12 Feb 04  |  Entertainment
iPod family grows again
09 Jan 04  |  Technology
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07 Jan 04  |  Technology
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24 Dec 03  |  Technology
Hi-tech jukeboxes offer 2m songs
25 Nov 03  |  Entertainment
Dell launches iPod rival
25 Sep 03  |  Business

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