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Here's Why Apple (AAPL) Discontinued the iPod Nano and Shuffle

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Apple (AAPL - Free Report) removed iPod Nanos and iPod Shuffles from its website and online store on Thursday, discontinuing its last two devices that didn’t run the iOS software system.

Debuted in 2005, the Nano and Shuffle came out as an alternative and less expensive version of Apple’s standard iPod. The company’s iconic devices’ sales peaked in 2008 when the devices generated revenue of $9.2 billion. In comparison, the iPhone created $1.8 billion revenue in the same year.

But as of last year, the iPhone generated nearly $136 billion, whereas Apple no longer specifies how much Nanos and Shuffles generate in revenue.

Apple has needed to make the shift away from selling traditional music players because now most people listen to music only on their smartphones. And to do that, they use music streaming services.

While Rhapsody, the original music streaming service, has been around since 2001, the competition among streaming services has only been heating up in recent years. Various companies now offer $9.99 per month plans alongside Rhapsody, like Pandora (P - Free Report) , Alphabet’s (GOOGL - Free Report) Google Play Music, Jay-Z’s Tidal, and, the most popular of all, Spotify. (AMZN - Free Report) has also recently gotten into the game by offering Prime Music free to all prime members. The retail giant also offers Music Unlimited for $9.99 per month, or $7.99 per month for prime members.

Apple launched its music streaming service in 2015. Apple Music currently offers monthly subscriptions at $9.99 for individuals and $14.99 for families, allowing up to six people to use the same account. It has drawn popularity with its extensive music library and its collaborations with popular artists, like Taylor Swift and Drake.

The iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle aren’t compatible with this growing trend of music streaming, Apple’s new strategy of growth. Neither device supports Apple Music, forcing users to purchase new music from the Apple store. And the iPod Shuffle doesn’t have Bluetooth, preventing the device from working with AirPods, Apple’s latest wireless headphones.

So while iPods led the way for iPhones and helped cement Apple’s current popularity, Apple is setting its sights on the future of music once again.

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