Monday, August 27, 2007

Technology History: The World's First MP3 Player

The world's first MP3 player wasn't introduced to the public by Apple (nope, not the iPod). It wasn't offered by Creative Labs (not the Zen either). The first MP3 player wasn't even a Diamond Corporation product (can anyone say Rio?). The world premiere of the MP3 was from a now defunct company named Eiger Labs.
Eiger Labs brought the world's first MP3 player to the masses during the summer of 1998 -- for a mere $165. The 32Mb portable held up to 32 minutes of near CD-quality audio or approximately 64 minutes of FM stereo-quality audio.
The player, dubbed the MPMan F10, was very basic and not user expandable, though owners could upgrade the memory to 64Mb by sending the player back to Eiger Labs. One article described the Eiger MPMan player as: "It’s probably easiest to describe it as the next generation of Sony Walkman. It’s probably just as Revolutionary as the very first Walkman if not more, because it represents the beginning of a new era in Digital Audio." [random capitalization copyright the original author]