Apple's iPod offers higher volume than many other music players because Apple CEO Steve Jobs is hard of hearing, Wired alleges.

Wired spoke with former PortalPlayer senior manager Ben Knauss, who made the claims. PortalPlayer is the company Apple worked with to develop the iPod, and Wired has the exclusive interview with Knauss.

He claims the idea of the iPod was dreamt up by hardware expert Tony Fadell, who approached Apple looking for help. Fadell has risen to become senior director of the iPod and special projects group at Apple.

The Wired piece is full of insights into the project, including claims that when the iPod project began it had "100 per cent" of Jobs' time, including daily meetings when the first iPod prototypes were built.

And the reason the iPod's louder than many is because of Jobs' "partial deafness," the report claims.

Knauss worked at PortalPlayer until near the end of development of the product, but quit before its release because he was not confident it would succeed.

He now works for Microsoft.