Although Apple’s new iPod licensing deal may not affect consumers immediately, it may eventually drive the price of some iPod accessories up. Apple is now charging iPod aftermarket accessory manufactures a royalty for placing a ‘Made For iPod’ symbol on its product. Until recently, Apple had not made the symbol a mandatory for any device that connects electronically to the iPod (i.e its docking connection). There are rumored reports that the royalty costs upwards of 10% of the device’s wholesale cost.
Many manufactures not pleased with the deal should take ease in knowing that the new royalty does guarantee them some privileges, though. As a result of the ‘iPod tax’, Apple is guaranteeing that their accessories will be compatible with future iPods, thus increasing not only the shelf life of their products but an increase in revenue. Apple recently shipped its Nano with an adapter that enables compatibly with older docks and also released a Universal Dock that works with many older iPods.