iPod (3rd generation)

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iPod (Third Generation)
Third Generation iPod
Release dateApril 28th, 2003
Units sold----
CPUDual PP5002 @ 90 MHz
Storage10 / 15GB / 20GB / 30GB / 40GB 4200RPM 1.8" Toshiba IDE Hard Drive
ARBL8 hours of music playback

The iPod Third Generation represented a significant step forward in the design of the iPod. It was the first iPod to have a fully solid state interface and the first iPod to have a model larger than 20GB. It was also the first iPod to use Apple's proprietary 30-pin dock connector, which would continue with the iPod line up until the last iPod touch and nano models. It is also the only iPod to have the buttons back lit, and also the last to have the buttons separate from the navigation wheels. This iPod was the first one to have plans to have an HP version. The unreleased HP iPod 3rd Gen had a HP Blue faceplate instead of the normal white faceplate.

Detailed Information

  • Release Date: April 28th, 2003
  • Processor: Dual PP5002 @ 90mhz
  • RAM: 32MB
  • Storage: 1.8" 4200RPM Toshiba IDE hard drive
  • Battery: 850mAh
  • ARBL: 8 Hours of Playback
  • Interface: Firewire 400 for both Syncing and Charging, 30-pin Dock Connector for Syncing only

The original models are as follows:

Capacity 10GB 15GB 30GB
MSRP $299 $399 $499

The Third Generation iPods had a minor refresh around early 2004, upgrading their capacity:

Capacity 15GB 20GB 40GB
MSRP $299 $399 $499


The third generation iPod was the first to use the silhouette advertising campaign, which skyrocketed sales for the iPod, it was both in the streets via posters, in magazines and online on ads and Apple's website. All advertising for this generation had the sillouhetes present in some way.


The third generation iPod is the first generation to include the 30-pin dock connector. This iPod can be charged and synced using a 30-pin to FireWire cable, but can also be synced with a 30-pin to USB cable. This iPod cannot charge over USB; it requires a 12 V FireWire connection. Accessories and docks utilizing this port were also manufactured.

Apple reports that it can quick charge in 1 hour to 80%, and fully charges in 3 hours


EveryMac's page on the iPod 3rd Generation (Revision 1): https://everymac.com/systems/apple/ipod/specs/ipod_3rdgen.html
EveryMac's page on the iPod 3rd Generation (Revision 2): https://everymac.com/systems/apple/ipod/specs/ipod_4threv.html
EveryMac's page on the iPod 3rd Generation (Revision 3): https://everymac.com/systems/apple/ipod/specs/ipod_5threv.html

Archived Webpage from Apple.com on the iPod 3rd Generation: https://web.archive.org/web/20040710070625/http://www.apple.com/ipod/

Article About the HP Blue iPod Reveal: https://pc.watch.impress.co.jp/docs/2004/0109/ces06.htm