Creative Ships 25 Millionth MP3 Player

Beleaguered electronics company Creative took a moment to toot its own horn on Wednesday, saying it had recently shipped its 25 millionth player.

Even though Creative was in the digital music market two years before the first iPod even shipped, it took the company eight years to get to this level, whereas Apple passed the same milestone in 2006, in only five years.

However, since then iPod sales have ramped up significantly, with the device selling over 110 million units as of September of this year. It is such a significant explosion in sales that other manufacturers, Creative included, are having a difficult time gaining any traction.

Regardless, this number is enough to make the Korean company the second biggest manufacturer of MP3 players behind Apple, according to studies by research firm IDC.

The first player from Creative was the original Nomad, a flash-based player that shipped in 1999. This was followed by the Nomad Jukebox, its first hard-drive based player that shipped the following year.

"Shipment of 25 million MP3 players marks a major milestone in Creative history, as our player unit volume exceeds the combined unit sales from some of the biggest names in consumer electronics," chairman and CEO Sim Wong Hoo said.

Sim over the years had been one of the digital media device industry's most visible players, known for his sometimes over-the-top comments regarding his not only his products, but Apple and the industry at large. He was one of the bigger proponents internally for expanding into the portable media business.

However, as Creative struggled in the face of Apple, Sim seemed to take an increasingly less public role. It seemed to all end with Apple and Creative settling their differences in August 2006, and the Singaporean company joining the "Made for iPod" program.

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