If you didn’t know today was going to be all about Apple, where have you been? With the announcement of the new iPhone, the Cupertino, California company also took the time to refresh its much loved iPod series of media players, updating the phone-less Touch and the weightless Nano, while the Shuffle and Classic mostly just stay the same.
One of the key brands that practically resurrected Apple as a major player in the technology world has been upgraded along with the iPhone, with new iPods for everyone that still has a use for one.
While more and more people are making their phones and tablets into their dedicated music and video players, there are still oodles of customers who have a use for a phone-less media player, and that’s who Apple is catering for with the updates.
Apple’s iPod Touch is the most obvious candidate for the refresh, with the next generation of iOS media player following a similar design change as the next iPhone. The iPod Touch usually keeps some of the design elements seen in its mobile sibling, and that’s still the case with this update.
In fact, the new iPod Touch features the 4 inch closer-to-widescreen-than-ever Retina screen right from the iPhone 5. The chassis is made from aluminium, though in a different and thinner design than Apple’s flagship phone (6.1mm thin compared to iPhone 5’s 7.6mm), and you’ll also find Bluetooth 4.0, a dual-band 802.11 a/b/g/n WiFi system, and the latest version of iOS – iOS 6 – upon release its in October.
The specs aren’t completely the same, with a dual-core A5 processor inside, 5 megapixel backside-illuminated camera, and a cool little loop at the bottom rear of the device, making it easy to strap the iPod Touch to your wrist.
Storage sizes are changing slightly, with 16GB meeting its maker and the new iPod Touch only arriving in 32GB and 64GB, with $329 and $439 prices respectively.
Oh, and there will be plenty of nifty colours so you don’t have to settle with just the standard black or silver.
The last generation of the iPod Touch will still be around in case you want to spend a little less and don’t care about the elongated screen, with that model coming in at $219 for 16GB and $279 for 32GB.
Apple’s popular Nano micro media has also taken a change, with a design that makes for the thinnest iPod yet, but almost goes backward in design.
With a look that brings it closer to an iPod Nano pre-2010, Apple has done away with the tiny clip-on touchscreen square that we admired so much from several years ago, moving instead to a thin rectangular design that marries a 2.5 inch multitouch display, aluminium casing, 5.4mm thickness, Bluetooth, Nike+ support, and pretty much everything else you’ve come to expect from an iPod Nano, with audio and video playback.
Those of you who loved to the clip-on look the Nano sported before will likely be disappointed, with the Shuffle now the only model to adopt this design, and anyone who thought Apple would slim the Nano to make an even nicer wristwatch can be included in this group too.
Given the bigger dimensions (albeit smaller thickness), you probably won’t be attaching this to your wrist, so it might be time to find another digital wristwatch.
There is now also only one size of iPod Nano, with 16GB the only capacity you’ll be able to find when it lands in October for $169 RRP.
Apple’s traditional iPod dock connector has changed in both of these models, with the new dock using not only a different design, but also allowing the high-speed USB 3.0 to move files much more quickly across the platforms.
Oh, and those earbuds each of these normally came with? They’ve changed too, with the new Earpods arriving with each device when they hit online and store shelves in October.
Elsewhere, some things at Apple still stay the same, as the Classic hard-drive based iPod – still featuring a whopping 160GB of storage – and truly pint-sized Shuffle have yet to receive any major updates. The Shuffle will be arriving in new colours and hitting a $55 price tag locally for 2GB of storage, but no major refreshes on these two devices, though we’d expect Apple will be throwing in the new Earpods across the range.