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Is Apple’s digital music player bad to the core? According to Reuters, Apple has been hit with five class action suits brought by music fans who claim that the company fraudulently concealed the fact that the iPod battery has a scant 18 month lifespan.

The iPod, of course, has been the killer app of the digital revolution so this swelling backlash is bad news. iPod protesters have been hitting the streets, putting graffiti about the bogus batteries on Apples kandy-kolored posters. A couple guys called the Neistat Brothers even made a film documenting their insurgency. Apple now offers a time-consuming and pricey $105 fix. Okay. But the problem remains. There are legions of iPoders out there (myself included) who feel rather ripped and burned. How could Jobs have let this happen? The iPod should be redesigned to accommodate a cheap, easy-to-install replacement battery. Or cut the price.

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