Back in 2014, The Verge writer Sean Hollister claimed that the age of the iPod had ended. Hollister has some good points. Even a quick look at his chart showing how iPod sales declined dramatically just as iPad and iPhone sales skyrocketed will convince some people that MP3 players have lost their place in the world.
MP3 players might have gone out of style, but they still play important roles in the lives of many people. You may even become one of those people after you consider these three reasons to own an MP3 player.
MP3 Players Are Perfectly Sized for Exercise
The old iPods were huge by today’s standards. If that’s what you think of when you hear about MP3 players, then you need to look at the newer, smaller designs. The latest 8GB SanDisk Clip Sport measures 2.6 inches by 0.63 inches. The tiny device even has a clip that attaches it to your shorts, shirt, or hat.
Apple’s smallest iPhone, the iPhone SE, has a four-inch screen. The SE is impressively small for a smartphone, but it’s giant compared to MP3 players designed for athletic training.
When you want to listen to music without lugging around an annoying device, stand-alone MP3 players have the advantage. Plus, many of them can play music for over 20 hours on a single charge. No matter how much you work out, your MP3 player will keep up with you.
An MP3 Player Will Save Your Smartphone’s Battery Life
Playing MP3 on your smartphone doesn’t put a lot of stress on the battery, but it does drain some of the battery’s electricity. (Streaming music on Wi-Fi uses considerably more energy, but few MP3 players use Wi-Fi, so it’s not an apt comparison.)
While playing MP3s on your smartphone won’t kill the battery, it will take up precious energy you may need to place calls or browse the internet. Even as smartphone manufacturers improve their batteries, most companies remain focused on building smaller phones with high-resolution displays. This focus results in phones that still don’t offer the battery life most consumers want.
Switching to a stand-alone MP3 player may only buy you half an hour of smartphone use. If you ever find yourself cursing your phone’s battery, though, that’s a half hour you can’t afford to waste.
MP3 Players Are Cheap and Durable
Daily life can expose your smartphone to a lot of dangers such as tripping on a root while running trails or jumping into a pool before you think to take the device out of your pocket. Considering that an iPhone 6 costs about $550, do you really want to expose it to those dangers?
MP3 players cost significantly less than even the cheapest smartphones. The 8GB SanDisk Clip Sport costs less than $50. The 4GB version costs less than $30. At that price, they’re practically disposable. Even if you manage to break your MP3 player, it’s easy to replace.
It’s hard to convince some people that MP3 players still fill a need in today’s world. As stand-alone devices continue to improve, though, you could see a resurgence in the near future.
Image via Flickr by Alan Light