Apple may not have been the first company to make a portable MP3 player, but the iPod has changed the lives of many, writes CNN/Money.

Reporter Gordon Anderson writes: "I walk for blocks each day through Manhattan with those signature white earbuds firmly in place. Seemingly every other pedestrian I pass, or nearly so, does the same thing."

"It's a little big idea that changed my life – and set it to music," he says.

And how did the iPod capture about 70 per cent of the market, he asks: "Only by being brilliant in every way."