Tag Archive for ‘iPod shuffle’

The Third-Generation iPod Shuffle ➝

Riccardo Mori recently acquired a third-generation iPod Shuffle and shared his thoughts on the minuscule music player. The device was a drastic change from previous iPods. Lacking controls on the unit itself, it relied on VoiceOver and the included headphones’ in-line controls.

This iteration of the iPod Shuffle was not well-received and Apple brought the on-device controls back in the following model. But reflecting on the third-generation iPod Shuffle today, I’m left wondering how long it will take for the AirPods to gain a little more independence. What if they featured a small amount of flash storage that could be automatically filled with music or the latest episode of your favorite podcast?

The Nano and Shuffle Discontinuation

As you may have heard, Apple quietly discontinued the iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle yesterday. The move wasn’t done alongside a press release or a statement, Instead, Apple simply removed the items from their online store. And people noticed. The news was later confirmed by Business Insider, who received confirmation from Apple that the Nano and Shuffle were, indeed, discontinued.

The Nano and Shuffle will still be available in some retail stores while supplies last, but this news leaves the iPod Touch as the only “iPod” branded product in Apple’s lineup. You’ll get more storage for your money with the iPod Touch today, though. Apple has increased storage capacities on the two models — 32GB for $199 and 128GB for $299.

The first-generation iPod Nano was the first Apple product I ever owned. I received it as a Christmas gift in 2005 and it marked a turning point in my computing life. Prior to owning the iPod, I was a dedicated PC enthusiast. I was enthralled by graphics cards, motherboards, processors, and all other forms of computer components. All I wanted to do was build computers and set them up. But the iPod changed that.

The iPod Nano acted as the halo product that everyone claimed it to be. From the moment I connected the iPod Nano to my PC and configured it in iTunes, I was hooked. I had never interacted with a device that was so easy to use and fun to manage. Nothing felt like a chore. Once I had my sync settings just right, I could connect the iPod once a day and all of my new music and podcasts would automatically transfer. It was like magic.

The iPod Nano allowed me to dip my toes in the water before jumping in the following year by purchasing a MacBook for college. If it wasn’t for the iPod Nano, I might never have fallen in love with Apple design aesthetics and acquired a dozen or so Apple devices over the past twelve years.

I can imagine my story is no different from millions of others who first realized how great computing devices could be when they purchased an iPod. But it’s time to put the Nano and Shuffle out to pasture. The smartphone, being The One Device that it is, has completely obliterated the dedicated music player market. The Nano and Shuffle served their roles well, but there’s no reason to sell a single-purpose device when the iPhone can do everything the iPod could, and more.

Pour one out for two of the best halo products Apple ever had.

Apple May Discontinue the iPod shuffle and classic ➝

Victor Agreda, Jr.:

It seems that the “product transition” Apple mentioned on the last earnings call could very well be within the iPod line. Specifically, if you want to buy an iPod shuffle or iPod classic from Apple, you should do it sooner rather than later. We’ve heard those two iPods are getting the axe this year.

The iPod shuffle and iPod classic seem like the least relevant devices in Apple’s product line. Other than the relatively high price tag of the iPod nano, I don’t know why anyone would choose to purchase an iPod shuffle. And with the full release of iCloud coming soon, I don’t know why anyone would purchase an iPod classic over an iPod touch.

The writing’s been on the wall for quite some time and it wouldn’t surprise me in the least if Apple decided to discontinue both the iPod shuffle and iPod classic immediately following their event on October 4.

(Via MacRumors.)

iPod shuffle ➝

When Apple introduced the third-generation iPod shuffle last year they decided to remove buttons from the device and add VoiceOver commands and buttons on the headphones to control your music. Although an interesting idea, it wasn’t exactly what their customers wanted. I personally loved the look of the third-generation iPod shuffle but the lack of buttons presented some serious shortcomings.

This year, Apple introduced the brand new fourth-generation iPod shuffle and have brought back the buttons. The new iPod shuffle looks like a smaller version of the second-generation model and comes in five colors. The music player retains the popular clip on it’s back and brings Genius Mixes support to the feature-set.

The iPod shuffle is priced at $49 for 2GB of storage, is available for pre-order today, and will be shipping next week.

The New iPod Lineup

At yesterday’s “It’s Only Rock and Roll” event Apple announced a completely refreshed lineup of iPods.

iPod shuffle

The form factor of the iPod shuffle has remained unchanged but it now comes in 2GB and 4GB varieties and is priced at $59 for the low end model. Apple is also offering the iPod shuffle in colors, alongside the standard silver and black there is pink, green, and blue.

A “special edition” iPod shuffle that is made out of polished stainless steel and comes with 4GB of storage is available for $99 exclusively from Apple.

iPod classic

Same form factor as before, but now with 160GB of storage for $249. Although there were rumors that the iPod classic would be discontinued I have a feeling that Apple will keep it around for at least one more hardware refresh (as long as the price of flash memory doesn’t plummet).

iPod touch

Apple is now positioning the iPod touch as a competitor to the Nintendo DS and the PSP. They started marketing it as such last year but Apple has started really kicking it into high gear. Except for the low end 8GB model the iPod touch is gaining OpenGL ES 2.0 support and the faster processor that the iPhone 3GS has.

The new pricing is $199 for 8GB, $299 for 32GB, and $399 for 64GB.

A camera is surprisingly missing from the iPod touch. It seems that HardMac‘s technical difficulties rumor may be true, especially since both iPodNN and AppleInsider claim that a camera is still coming to the iPod touch. Unless you need an iPod touch right now, I’d suggest waiting a little while.

iPod nano

The iPod nano was the biggest hardware announcement of the event. Apple managed to pack a video camera (no still images)  into the iPod nano while maintaining its previous generation’s form factor, but now it is made out of polished anodized aluminum. To complement the video camera the iPod nano has an integrated microphone, a speaker, and  a larger 2.2-inch display.

For the first time ever the iPod nano has a built in FM tuner. The radio has a TiVo-like live pause function that saves up to 15 minutes of music. Song names are displayed on the screen (as long as your radio station broadcasts that data) and you can tag songs you hear for identification purposes in iTunes when you’re back at your computer.

Other notable features:

  • VoiceOver
  • Genius Mixes
  • Voice Recorder
  • Built in pedometer to sync with Nike+

The new iPod nano is priced at $149 for 8GB and $179 for 16GB.

Apple – iPod – Compare iPod models and find the right one for you..

Previously:
8/31/09:
Apple Makes September 9 Event Official
8/27/09: iPod classic May Also Receive Camera
7/23/09: Wired Touting iPod touch Camera Rumor
4/7/09: iPod touch May Gain Camera in Future Hardware Revision

Update 9/12/09: Third-Generation iPod Touch Teardown Reveals 802.11n-Capable Wi-Fi Chip, Empty Space for Camera – Mac Rumors

Update 9/13/09: Chris Albrecht of NewTeeVee put the new iPod nano through its paces against a Flip Ultra SD. The Flip took better video but does that really matter? Who would buy a Flip camera instead of an iPod nano? Although the Flip takes slightly better video, the extra features you get with the iPod nano is well worth the lower video quality.

Update 9/13/09: Covino & Rich iPod touch was Real

Update 11/24/09: iPod touch Camera Rumors Resurface

Scosche Gives the iPod shuffle Buttons ➝

Scosche TapStick

Remember all the cries of outrage that were heard shortly after Apple announced the third generation iPod shuffle? Well, they have all calmed down a bit and now everyone who was outraged can breathe a sigh of relief. Scosche has announced the TapSTICK. Set for release the first week of July, this $29 accessory adds three buttons to the otherwise buttonless iPod shuffle. These three buttons are designed to mimic the functionality of the three buttons that would normally be found on your headphones.

The primary function of this accessory will be the use of it in your car but I’m sure a lot of you out there will use it specifically for third party headphones.

The price is a little steep though, a $29 accessory on a $79 iPod. But, at least the option is now out there.

Update 7/30/09: Both iLuv and Belkin have announced headphone adapters for the iPod shuffle. With on of these adapters you are free to use whatever headphones you like.

Update 7/30/09: Scosche has announced their new “Increased Dynamic Range earphones with tapLINE control technology.” Basically they are relatively cheap third party headphones with iPod and iPhone compatible remote and mic.