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ple Launches New iPods & 'Genius' iTunes 8

Gordon Kelly


Apple Overhauls iPod nano, Tweaks touch, Sidelines classic

I predicted 7 out of 10 on the excitement scale for tonight's big 'Let's Rock' event and we hit, yep: a 7 - if you're feeling really generous.

So let's break it down: the iPod nano is the big mover and shaker (pun intended... you'll see) of the line and is now as we knew elongated back to its 2G proportions, has a curved aluminium design reminiscent of the iPhone 3G and 2G touch (wait for it...), is even thinner (6.2mm) and lighter (36g), comes in up to 16GB capacities and has an enlarged screen and integrated accelerometer which automatically flips into landscape model for displaying pictures and video and skips tracks when shaken (I had an old CD player which did the same and no one thought that was clever!). The UI has also had a tweak but it's not the iPhone-esque icon overhaul that was mooted (wow, one leak wasn't true).

The next biggest mover (which isn't saying much) is the iPod touch which - again, as expected - is merely a gentle refresh: it gets a rounded iPhone 3G/iPod nano design, iPhone matching inbuilt speaker and side volume controls and offers up to 36 hours and six hours of continuous music and video playback respectively on a single charge. On the software front it will come with firmware 2.1 (available free to touch owners with 2.0, a $9.95 charge otherwise) and offers Nike+ software built in - which is about as close to a surprise as it we got tonight.

Apple is also now heavily pushing the touch as a game machine: "It's the best portable device for playing games" spouted Jobs, which is pretty funny considering you can't even get a decent Tetris clone and card and tilt based games remain its highlights to date. Still, we'll give this one time yet as its early days.

Lastly the iPod classic (the shuffle was ignored completely) is clearly set for the sidelines within the next 12/18 months as Apple has scrapped both the 80GB and 160GB versions and replaced them with a single 120GB model - yeah hardware travelling jukebox fans, we're disappointed too. Changes? That's it: just the option of a lower capacity than could be bought before. Goodbye HDDs...

So let's get some pricing and here we do get some (yes, expected!) good news: the 4G 8GB and 16GB iPod nano will cost just £109 and £149 respectively while the 120GB classic retails for £179 and the 8GB, 16GB and 32GB touch line start at £169, rising to £219 and £279. Personally I'm not sure the touch has come down enough however to stop its continued cannibalisation from subsidised iPhone 3G sales.

Yep, all in all... pretty dull. I'm changing that score to a 6...

What news of iTunes and the iPhone I hear (some) of you cry! That article is being scribbled as you read this...

Update: The less said about the English in Apple's latest iPod touch advertising slogan the better...

Update 2: Continuing the odd new ad tags, here's the despotic line for the 120GB classic (no more 160 gigabytes, that's you told *cough*)


iPod nano 4G

iPod classic 120GB

iPod touch 2G


September 9, 2008, 11:37 pm

Too bad there were no surprises! I was really waiting for that "one more thing". So, when do we expect an event for new macbooks? It's time already!


September 9, 2008, 11:38 pm

i call first post (i think...)

ipod nano - available in more colours than a friggin' rainbow


September 9, 2008, 11:55 pm

alright, then, not first post - anyway, i think it's ugly (the 4G nano), but then again, i thought the 3G nano was even uglier, so...

i hope apple have improved on the audio quality of these things, too - though that probably isn't likely (prove me wrong, please)

and about these "leaks" - i hope i wasn't the only one thinking these "leaks" were done on purpose.


September 10, 2008, 12:18 am

Chalk up another hit for Kevin Rose... what's his right to wrong ratio now? Yay I was right to be a believer of his findings, and on my bet of the (albeit typical) September arrival too, and also to base those beliefs on the curved design - despite one users comment of "It's not really in-line with classic Apple design. A dead give-away is the curved front" - Check and mate.

... but what I'm (probably) going to be wrong about is the MacBook refreshes landing this month also. Well...

Then again... there are plenty of days left in September... and a quick glance at the stock levels on the entire Apple notebook range at Apple Authorised Distributors in the UK channel indicate that we may not be far away at all. MacBook Air is eight months old in a weeks time... anyone for bigger and cheaper SSD's?

I think IF anything new is announced this month, it will be one week tomorrow, Wednesday, September 17th... and it will be a quiet update, no special event... remember this is in the unlikely event that it did happen, of course. Haha! Which it will. Eventually.


September 10, 2008, 12:23 am

Another slew of distinctly average players from Apple, the new nano is just 'meh' which includes Apples long run of bad battery life, sub par features and audio quality to achieve a player that is no more pocketable then almost every competitor.

The changes to the touch are again simple and unnecessary, I don't want integrated speakers in my mp3 players, because they are just bad sound quality wise. And this means that the market will be flooded with cheap 1st generation Touches which are much better value for money.

And I don't understand the 120GB model, isn't this a downgrade? Since I though 160GB classics were still hovering about.


September 10, 2008, 12:47 am

hmmm. That nano looks way too big. I can fit my third gen nano in my wallet's credit card slots, which is actually fairly useful as I just plug it in my car and it's always with me. No chance of doing that with the new one by the look of it.

I haven't had any battery problems with it. It easily lasts long enough that it never runs out before I want to resync it for new podcasts.

Paul Randle 1

September 10, 2008, 3:07 am

SIX? Do you really think that's a six? I rate it 3 at most. And that's one too any Apple stories today.


September 10, 2008, 3:12 am

@Paul - count yourself lucky, 2 is about 6 to 8 less than you'll see on other sites. And yes, it was disappointing.

For me the most interesting aspect was this is clearly the beginning of the end for the iPod classic...


September 10, 2008, 1:20 pm

Anyone else noticed that the Ipod touch 32GB is now &#163289, not &#163279 as in the picture on page 1? It is only $399 in the US, which is only around &#163230 anyway. Sort it out Apple.....


September 10, 2008, 2:07 pm

mperrett, well spotted on the 32GB touch price hike!

Luan Bach

September 10, 2008, 3:06 pm

Not just me then! I thought I was losing my memory, because when I checked at 7pm the price was &#163279 for the 32GB, then was thinking about getting it when I saw later that night that it was &#163289. My sister is going to the US in October, may get it from there then.


September 10, 2008, 4:04 pm

Bitterly disappointed with the launch. Where was a 64GB touch? Also as somebody who is after storing the most music in lossless (preferably FLAC) format the removal of the 160GB classic is another kick in the teeth. It clearly looks like the start of the end for hard disk based players. So how long am I going to have to wait before a 128GB flash based player becomes economic?


September 10, 2008, 5:24 pm

It was reported in this article Apple charges people almost $10 for a firmware upgrade to the latest version. That really takes the pi** out of all those people who rushed out and bought the ipod when first launched.

I don't see why the end user has to pay for Apple's original errors on their products.

The Pope

September 10, 2008, 5:41 pm

TL1210 - I read that the firmware update is free to anyone who already has v2.0

But I still think you're right.


September 10, 2008, 7:55 pm

@mperrett - good spot, I've written about this here:


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