With iPhones being all the hype on the market right now, do we have a need for devices purely serving our musical needs anymore?

Why buy iPods when iPhones do it all and more? Not only do the latest iPhones have built in iPods and iTunes, but it provides us with the ease of multitasking while listening to our favorite tunes. Have music playing when you're replying to a text, checking the news, or playing games. Even if you have incoming calls-not to worry-your iPhone fades the music while you pick up the line.

Although with a far greater storage capacity for songs, iPod sales have in reality been dropping below its fellow Apple products. With iPads and iPhones under the current spotlight, iPod business has actually been in the lows for several years now. Piper Jaffray and Gene Munster's retail reports suggested that sales declined by 17 percent from last year's numbers. This came as a surprise to everyone-even Apple themselves had predicted a much lower drop in retail sales. Sales for Macs and iPads, however, remain strong competitors next to the iPhone.

Any way you look at it, it seems clear that iPods have reached their peak. First released in 2001, sales were increasing consistently until around 2005 and 2006. Starting in 2005, all major mobile phone manufacturers began introducing mp3 features, which may help explain the dwindling of iPods in that period.

A mere several years ago, iPods were the hottest on the market. The hip white music player shut out long-time competitors like Walkmans, CD players, and, virtually, most other mp3 players out there. With even the most basic phones coming built-in with mp3 player capabilities, chances are it's not just Apple asking if there is a need for music devices anymore. Plus, iPods don't come cheap either. Compared across the board, there are a variety of mp3 players out there that serve the same purposes for a significantly lower price. Of course, with Apple it's never just utility we're paying for.

As a whole, there may be less and less of a need for a standalone music player like the iPod or iTouch, but the reputation and status Apple has built for these products isn't going away for years to come. Indeed, the iPod has arguably revolutionized the culture of listening to music on-the-go no matter what the numbers may say.