Calling it ‘the strongest lineup of iPods we’ve ever had’ Apple CEO Steve Jobs today announced redesigned models of the iPod shuffle, nano and touch with the iPod classic not even getting an honourable mention. More on that later.
Here’s what’s new:
Apple’s baby iPod, the iPod shuffle, is priced at $49/€55 and features buttons, Voice Over (press a button to hear song title or name) and a clip. The squared models come in silver as well as pastel blue, pink, green and orange.
Square seems to be the new black as the iPod nano also gets major redesign. Colours are similar to the shuffle, with the addition of dark grey and red. The square nano is now touch-based, allowing the user to pinch and swipe. It also features a built-in FM radio and clip. Pricing is set at $149/€169 for 8GB and $179/€199 for the 16GB models.
Last but not at all least was the announcement of the new iPod touch, which is thinner but now more ‘fun-packed’ than ever. It’s very easy to see why the iPod touch is extremely popular, a trend that is not looking to change any time soon. It is essentially an iPhone without the phone, now packing the retina display known only on the iPhone 4 till now, facetime and HD video recording via a front facing camera. Model sizes are 8GB priced at $229/€239, 32GB for $299/€309 and 64GB for $399/€409. Impressive. This will sell well.
Well I did miss any mention of the iPod classic. Indeed, ahead of today’s event, epitaph-like pieces appeared around the blogosphere. Words like ‘dead’ and ‘killing’ were being thrown about. Sniff. And yes, there was no upgrage, no new features, colours, no size increases for the audiofreaks out there.
What most people don’t realize is that there are more iPods out there than units sold. This is because every iPhone and iPad also features an iPod “ a virtual one. If you don’t believe me, look at the little icon on your home screen. Isn’t that an iPod? Isn’t that what it’s called in your settings? See what I mean? A product that exists in material and virtual form. Now THAT’s magic!
Almost nine years after the launch of the first iPod and 275 million sold units later, Apple is poised to conquer even more ground with its current crop of iPods. Let the rivals bring it on.
Here is Apple’s comparison page for the entire iPod family. All new models are available today for preorder, to be delivered from next week.
P.S. The iPod classic is still featured in the Apple store. We’ll see if the current model will continue to be offered or phased out.