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Fat Nanos and the iPod Touch

So, Apple has some new toys. A red Shuffle, iPod Nano replaced by the Fat Nano (not its official name), 160GB iPod Videos and a phoneless iPhone – with WiFi, Safari and YouTube – and possibly most importantly of all, a WiFi iTunes Music Store.

It’s the iPod Touch and despite having no possible justification for buying one (or, come to think of it, any money) and the comparatively limited capacity (8Gb for the cheaper model, 16GB for the bigger one), I really want one. Apple technolust strikes again.

Incidentally, the combination of iTunes and Wi-Fi is a major up-yours to the phone networks, who tend to demand big cuts of any download services. Apple’s just bypassed them altogether.

20 replies on “Fat Nanos and the iPod Touch”

It is indeed very impressive. It’s the first major iPod improvement in ages, instead of just a colour screen and minor UI differences. And the ability to buy songs on the go is a great addition.

Steve Jobs says: “It’s one of the seven wonders of the world – it’s just incredible.” though I think this might be a little over-the-top.

Incidentally, the combination of iTunes and Wi-Fi is a major up-yours to the phone networks, who tend to demand big cuts of any download services. Apple’s just bypassed them altogether.

And Nokia have just sleepwalked into their lair. Nokia announced this new music download service that all the networks have immediately vowed to strangle in its cradle by refusing to sell phones that have the software on it. I mean, how stupid are Nokia? Don’t they know their own market?

Alex – yeah, seven wonders of the world is pushing it somewhat. It’s a music player, ferchrissakes.

UK pricing isn’t too bad, it seems: £199/£269. Although thinking about it some more, I’d rather have an iPhone than an iPod Touch while storage capacities are so low. Wifi just isn’t widespread enough for me.

Stephen – yeah, I think Nokia’s move is a weird one. If Sony couldn’t make it work with Connect, what chance does Nokia have?

So what do you make of the Starbucks tie-up? Mere PR tomfoolery, or something more interesting?

> Nokia announced this new music download service that all the networks have immediately vowed to strangle in its cradle by refusing to sell phones that have the software on it.

Ah, but Nokia’s long-term plans appear not to include the networks. Look at the N800: wi-fi and VoIP, but no cellular. And they’re now making wi-fi and VoIP pretty much standard on their phones. I reckon the music download thing was just a subtle marketing move: announce something nice for your customers and let the networks announce that they’ll kill it. Result: your customers like you more and the networks less. If you want to sell directly to them without the networks one day, that’s a great result. If you want to force the networks to fit their service to your devices one day, instead of the other way around, it’s a great result. I’d expect to see more moves like that in the next few years.

It’s already working to some extent, at least on me. If they hadn’t just launched the E90, I’d be buying an N800. It’s worth £280.

Speaking of which, if Apple had really wanted to screw the networks as everyone is saying, they’d have put VoIP on the iPod Touch. That would have been War.

I think as long as they get a bit wad of cash from AT&T whenever someone buys an iPhone, that’s a golden goose they won’t cook.

I think the touch screen is neat, but, and this is a big but, I think it’s a massive step back in terms of usability. I don’t want to have to keep taking my iPod out of my pocket – with my iPod mini, I can adjust the volume, skip tracks, pause, etc, by using the click wheel through my clothes. It would be interesting to compare the number of steps it takes to choose a song, start playing it, then pause it on standard iPod, then on a iPod touch. I reckon it’ll be faster on the click-wheel version.

I honestly think it’s directly based on the N800. Nokia and Apple both think there’s a market for Web-surfing devices that you can hold casually in one hand while lying on the sofa. I reckon they’re right.

I agree with both of you. Lack of tactile input is a pain if you’re using the iPod as a walkman – particularly if you’re like me, can’t be bothered making playlists and just go “nah – skip – nah – skip” until you find something you like – and a little web tablet is something I’d like to have.

If they are going for the little-Web-tablet market, I honestly think it’s a mistake not to include email.

As far as I can see, the N800’s just a better product all round. It’ll be interesting to see if Nokia try a new marketing drive for the N800 on the back of the Touch’s fame. And whether they lower the price. I still might just get one.

Incidentally, the iPod Touch UI seems very incomplete – which is very un-apple. Any bets on what the missing icons will turn out to be?

Stephen, does iPhone do IMAP?

Sorry, missed that! Yes, that’s in fact the basis for iPhone Exchange compatibility: enable IMAP on Exchange, and the BlackBerry advantage is gone. (Not, of course, that it’s so easy to get the IT department to make changes to Exchange settings but that’s not really Apple’s fault.)

Thanks Stephen.

Now everyone knows it’s O2, I’m leaning towards iPhone – particularly as it turns out my unlimited data blackberry package isn’t unlimited data after all, it’s just unlimited email. So it’s bye bye browsing on the blackberry. Needless to say I found this out from bills, not from the ads or chats with O2.

O2 really are sods. According to the guardian they were so desperate to get the iPhone they’ve inked a deal that makes it impossible for them to make any money from it. If that’s the case, getting the iPhone isn’t just a nice gadget thing; it’s a “hahahaha, take this you bastards” thing.

>>Now everyone knows it’s O2, I’m leaning towards iPhone

Despite being able to screw them out of money I wouldn’t touch O2 any more.

Funny, O2 used to be absolutely goddamn awful (a hangover from being part of BT, of course), but they’ve generally got a much better reputation these days, and deservedly so, in my opinion. They’ve been so good to me that I actively avoid going elsewhere now. Orange, on the other hand, used to be great and turned pish.

> I’m very annoyed about the “when we said data we meant email” thing.

That would be annoying, yes. Have you got any bits of paper from them that say “unlimited data” on them? ‘Cause you could insist.

Anyway, O2 are due to launch the E90 today — a much bigger deal than the iPhone, in my opinion.

Finally got an E90. They’ve been delayed again and again, partly through Nokia recalling them to fix a minor hardware fault and partly, apparently, through completely over-the-top demand. Which is odd, ’cause there doesn’t seem to be a lot of buzz about it yet — not by iPhone standards. Which in turn is odd, ’cause it’s just superb. They’ve outdone themselves.

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