Danny Williams of Douglasville, GA had his first-generation iPod nano ignite in his pocket while he was working at a kiosk in the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. “So I look down and I see flames coming up to my chest,” said Williams. “I’m still kind of freaked out that after only a year and a half my iPod caught fire in my pocket.” According to reports, Williams’ iPod was in flames for roughly fifteen seconds; he believes that a piece of paper in his pocket with the iPod may have shielded him from the flames, preventing burn injuries. The iPod owner also said that Apple has requested that he send the unit back, and has promised a replacement.
Market analysis group iSuppli has completed its teardown of the new iPod nano (with video), and estimates the Bill of Materials cost of the 4GB model to be $58.85, giving it the lowest BOM cost of any member of the nano line analyzed by iSuppli. The firm estimates the 8GB model’s BOM cost to be $82.85. While these estimates do not include other costs such as manufacturing, software, intellectual property, accessories, packaging, R&D, or advertising, the company claims the ratio between the 4GB nano’s BOM cost and its retail price of $149 is quite high, even for Apple. Part of this reduction in costs may be attributed to changes in component suppliers. “The changes in components have resulted in significant cost reductions in the nano design, allowing Apple to offer a product that is less expensive to build and that has enhanced features compared to its predecessor,” said Andrew Rassweiler, senior analyst and teardown services manager for iSuppli.
Among these new component suppliers, Micron, Dialog and Intersil — along with the return of Synaptics — the “big winner,” according to iSuppli, was U.S. semicondutor supplier Micron. ISuppli claims this is the first time they have identified a Micron part in an iPod; in the nano torn down by iSuppli, Micron was the manufacturer of the NAND flash memory that serves as the media player’s storage, an estimated $24 part in the 4GB model and $48 in the 8GB. iSuppli notes that while this is a major win for Micron, Apple will likely continue to use Samsung, the world’s largest producer of NAND-type flash, as suppliers of NAND memory. Samsung supplied the combined core video processing chip in the system, which is estimated to cost $8.60.
Apple has launched a new promotion for college students and faculty, called Major in Mac, which offers a free iPod nano with the purchase of any new Mac. To take part in the promotion, participants must purchase a qualifying Mac and qualifying iPod on the same sales receipt between now and September 16. While the promotion is aimed at the iPod nano, both nanos and fifth-generation iPods qualify for the promotion, which offers a $199 rebate after purchase. Claims can be made both online and through the mail.
Proctor and Gamble detergent brand Tide is offering an orange iPod nano featuring the Tide logo on the Click Wheel and a $50 iTunes gift card as a prize package in a current promotion. The company is selling “Vintage” t-shirts adorned with a worn, faded Tide logo to raise support for a New Orleans-based charity. All the proceeds from the sales of the shirts go to the St. Bernard Project, to help rebuild 10 homes for families in New Orleans. With the purchase of each t-shirt comes an entry to win an orange iPod nano and the iTunes gift card. One package will be given away each week between today and 6/25. [via TUAW]
The Clothes Off Our Back Foundation is auctioning off a limited edition engraved iPod nano signed by stars from NBC’s hit comedy “The Office.” The nano, which has a current bid of $300, was signed by Leslie David Barker, Brian Baumgartner, Kate Flannery, Angela Kinsey and Phyllis Smith at the Platinum Guild 2007 Golden Globes Suite. According to the foundation, proceeds from the auction benefit the Children’s Defense Fund, Cure Autism Now and the emergency relief efforts in Darfur (specifically Friends of the World Food Program, Save the Children and the U.S. Fund for UNICEF). The auction ends on March 15th.
A case of 42 iPod nanos was stolen earlier this month during business hours at the Apple Store in the Twenty Ninth Street mall in Boulder, Colorado. “Employees at the 1755 29th St. business told police they noticed a 2-foot-by-2-foot Plexiglas display case was missing from a table about 10 feet inside the front door at about 5 p.m. Jan. 9,” reports the Boulder Daily Camera. “The case, which weighed about 30 pounds, contained 42 of the new 4GB iPod nanos. The stolen case had been set up the night before it was taken. It wasn’t taped or wired down, and store managers said they won’t display a similar case in the future.”
Commonwealth Bank, a large Sydney, Australia-based bank, has created a new method to compare global currencies and purchasing power using the iPod nano. Similar to the Big Mac index launched 20 years ago by The Economist magazine, the CommSec iPod Index looks at pricing of the 2GB iPod nano in U.S. dollars in 26 countries.
“Brazilians pay the most for an iPod, shelling out $327.71, well above second-placed India at $222.27,” reports Reuters. “Canada was the cheapest place to buy a Nano at $144.20, while Australia ranked 19th at $172.36, cheaper than Germany ($192.46), France ($205.80), South Korea ($176.17) and China, where the machine is manufactured. The U.S. was fourth cheapest at $149.”
The iPod nano’s best-of-class battery life definitely paid off for a lost mushroom picker in Oregon last week. Twenty-five year old Pini Nou was spotted in heavy underbrush and rescued after search teams saw the glow of his iPod Friday. “The underbrush was so thick, it took the searchers a full 22 minutes to reach Nou, who, lacking a flashlight, had been trying to use the faint glow of his iPod nano display as a light source,” reports the Corvallis Gazette-Times. “It took several more hours to get him safely out of the woods, and searchers didn’t get back home until around 6 a.m.”
Following up on last month’s release of the four-Gigabyte iPod nano (PRODUCT) RED Special Edition - the first red iPod, and first iPod with a charitable purpose - Apple Computer today announced the immediate availability of an eight-Gigabyte RED iPod nano for $249. “Customer response to the iPod nano (PRODUCT) RED Special Edition has been off the charts,” said Greg Joswiak, Apple’s vice president of Worldwide iPod Product Marketing. “We’re thrilled to add a second model with 8GB of capacity, enough for 2,000 songs, so customers have yet another choice in supporting this important cause.”
Identical to the prior version except for storage capacity, the new nano brings the number of 8GB color options to two - black or red - and still contributes a total of $10 from the purchase price to the Global Fund to fight AIDS in Africa. The 8GB iPod nano (PRODUCT) Red is available from the online Apple Store today, and will be in retail Apple Stores this weekend.
Apple has apparently made a deal with MySpace to promote its new second-generation iPod nano lineup on the large social networking site. Apple has created MySpace profile pages for the green nano, blue nano and pink nano, allowing members to add the nanos as “friends.” Each nano profile page features a music playlist, the nano TV commercial, a photo gallery, a free screensaver, desktop pictures, a MySpace site skin, and a link to buy the nanos at the online Apple Store. Each nano currently has over 4,000 friends. It appears Apple did not create pages for the black, silver or red nano.
Update: The profile pages appear to have been removed. No reason was given, though iLounge still believes the profile pages to be the work of Apple.
Update #2: The profile pages are back online.
The just-announced special edition iPod nano (PRODUCT) RED is available now in Apple retail stores across the U.S. Apple’s latest nano is nearly identical to other models, save for the red aluminum enclosure and small “(PRODUCT) RED” engraving on the back. The packaging is also very similar to other nanos, but now comes with a (PRODUCT) RED information card. You can find photos in our updated review of the second-generation iPod nano here.
In an interview with iLounge this morning, Apple Vice President of Hardware Product Marketing Greg Joswiak answered several questions regarding the company’s decision to release the iPod nano (PRODUCT) RED Special Edition, and matching, specially designed iTunes Gift Card.
On why Apple became involved with (RED): According to Joswiak, the effort to create a Special Edition iPod for the cause was led “by both Bono and Bobby Shriver,” founders of (RED), who consider the fight against AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria in Africa a “very important cause.” Proceeds from sales of (RED) branded products go directly to The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, which focuses its investments in AIDS programs, especially for women and children. Bono has described AIDS as the “greatest health crisis in 600 years,” and has aided in efforts to convince several leading companies to sell special (PRODUCT) RED offerings.
On the gains to Apple and (RED) from the release of the new iPod nano: Joswiak noted that Apple’s and (RED)‘s goals are to create “sustaining revenue and increased awareness” through the (PRODUCT) RED Special Edition campaign, and Apple has “not set any end date” for the product. The company will produce as many Special Edition red nanos as consumers demand, with availability beginning today.
On additional Apple contributions to the (RED) effort: Joswiak noted that a (PRODUCT) RED iTunes Gift Card will be available in November. The card will be “designed to match the (PRODUCT) RED campaign,” and Apple will donate 10% of revenues from each gift card purchase to (PRODUCT) RED. It will be available in a $25 denomination.
The iPod nano (PRODUCT) RED Special Edition comes in packaging almost identical to the standard iPod nano box, save for its red print and PRODUCT (RED) Special Edition markings. As with other Special Edition iPods, etching on the nano’s back indicates its special status.
As expected, Apple today announced the iPod nano (PRODUCT) RED Special Edition. The 4GB RED nano, which is available immediately, features a red aluminum enclosure and sells for $199. Apple will contribute $10 from the sale of each RED nano to the Global Fund to help fight HIV/AIDS in Africa as part of a partnership with the (PRODUCT) RED initiative created by U2’s Bono and Bobby Shriver. Apple said it will also offer a $25 iTunes (PRODUCT) RED gift card next month.
“We’re ecstatic that Apple is giving their customers the choice to buy a red iPod nano and help women and children affected by HIV/AIDS in Africa,” said Bono, co-founder of (RED). “It’s wonderful to see this incredible level of commitment from companies that are willing to lend their creativity in the fight against AIDS in Africa, the greatest health crisis in 600 years.”
“Now customers can buy the best music player in the world and do something to help the world at the same time,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “We’re honored to work with Bono, (RED) and this team to contribute to an incredibly important initiative and help change the way people think about AIDS in Africa.”
U2’s Bono will reportedly announce a special edition red iPod during tomorrow’s Oprah Winfrey Show as part of the Product RED initiative aimed at battling AIDS. According to two separate reports by Apple enthusiast sites, the show was taped earlier today in Chicago and featured Bono and a 4GB “iPod nano RED.” The special nano will reportedly be priced at the same $199, with $10 of each sale going to the Global Fund to support AIDS programs in Africa.
Oprah’s website currently has the following teaser posted: “Get ‘red’-y! It’s something so huge, it took Oprah, Bono and a convertible to make it happen! Plus, Penelope Cruz and Kanye West are in on it! An extraordinary launch! Chicago goes ‘red’ today and this is just the beginning!” Rumors of a Product RED iPod first surfaced in February. Companies including American Express, Converse, Gap and Armani have all released specially-designed red products as part of the project.
Update: The Chicago Tribune is now reporting that it has confirmed with both Apple and The Global Fund to Fight AIDS that a Product RED iPod will be introduced tomorrow.
Update #2: The Chicago Tribune is now hosting a photo of Bono and Oprah listening to the Product RED iPods at the Chicago Apple Store.
As shown in our disassembly photo gallery, the new second-generation iPod nano has three Apple-marked chips of unknown origin and no chip from PortalPlayer. According to a Wedbush Morgan Securities report, one of the Apple-marked chips is a Samsung ARM processor, occupying the socket formerly supplied by PortalPlayer. Earlier this year, PortalPlayer warned that Apple would not use its chips in the next nano, followed by reports that Samsung had won an Apple contract to supply chips for new iPods.
In addition to our other coverage of the second-generation iPod nano, iLounge has just posted a complete disassembly / autopsy photo gallery with more than 25 pictures of the new nano’s innards. Visit the iPod nano (second-generation) disassembly gallery here and let us know what you think!
Apple has posted a QuickTime video version of its new iPod nano commercial, which was first shown at today’s special event in San Francisco. The ad, similar to Apple’s well-known silhouette style spots, features dancers with iPod nanos streaming light. The ad features the song “The Audience Is Listening Theme Song” by Cut Chemist and ends with the words “The new iPod nano. Completely Remastered.”
Apple today introduced its second-generation iPod nano. The all-new nano sports an iPod mini-like aluminum body, 24 hours of battery life, and increased storage capacity. The new nano, which is thinner and lighter than the original model, is available in silver, pink, green, blue and black in sizes from 2GB to 8GB. The new nano also has a brighter display and comes with redesigned earbuds. New software features include gapless playback and a new Search and Quick Scroll.
The new 2GB nano model is available only in silver for $149, the new 4GB model comes in in silver, pink, green and blue for $199, and the new 8GB model in available in black only for $249. Apple also announced new accessories designed for the second-generation nano, including lanyard headphones ($39), an armband ($29), a dock ($29), and an ultra-compact USB power adapter ($29).
Along with the new nano, Apple has also created new packaging. The second-generation nano will come in an all-new transparent plastic box, allowing customers to see which color nano is inside.
Apple will use its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) next month to announce the second-generation iPod nano and full-length iTunes movie rentals, according to report by Think Secret. The website claims that the new nanos will feature increased capacity (6GB and 8GB) and come in multiple colors. Think Secret says Apple has relented to the Hollywood studios and will offer a subscription-based movie download service. Apple has reportedly already made agreements with Disney, Universal, Paramount, and Warner Bros.
Following the Apple news site’s reports, American Technology Research analyst Shaw Wu said he doesn’t expect such announcements to come at WWDC. “While we would like to see Apple refresh its nano sooner than later, our analysis continues to indicate a late Sept. to Oct. launch and ramp as more likely,” Wu said in a research note. “There is a first time for everything, but keep in mind WWDC is a Mac event and has not been used in the past for major iPod announcements. We anticipate a separate event to announce new iPod related products.”
Apple has updated its support website with a new section covering the new Nike+iPod Sport Kit and related services. The new Nike+iPod support area offers several support documents, technical specifications and FAQs, including information on wireless capabilities, battery performance, and calibration. The new section also provides troubleshooting tips, a discussion forum, and a helpful video tutorial.