Apple releases new iPod shuffle with VoiceOver | iLounge News

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Apple releases new iPod shuffle with VoiceOver

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Apple has released an all-new iPod shuffle with an audio-based navigation system called VoiceOver. Devoid of buttons save for the three-position power, shuffle, and ordered play switch and billed as “the world’s smallest music player,” the third-generation iPod shuffle uses VoiceOver to let users navigate through songs and playlists using the in-line remote control found on the included headphones. VoiceOver can tell users the name of the song and artist currently playing, playlist information, and status information such as battery life. Users will hear a slightly different voice depending on what operating system their computer uses — users who sync their shuffles with Mac OS X Leopard will hear this voice, while PC users and Mac users running OS X Tiger will hear this voice. More audio samples of the VoiceOver feature are available on Apple’s website. The new shuffle also features a stainless steel clip on the back for attaching to clothing, offers 10 hours of battery life, and is “significantly smaller than a AA battery,” according to Apple. The new iPod shuffle comes in 4GB capacities only, and is available now in silver or black for $79.

“Imagine your music player talking to you, telling you your song titles, artists and playlist names,” said Greg Joswiak, Apple’s vice president of iPod and iPhone Product Marketing. “The amazingly small new iPod shuffle takes a revolutionary approach to how you listen to your music by talking to you, also making it the first iPod shuffle with playlists.”

Alongside the third-generation iPod shuffle, Apple has also released the new Apple iPod shuffle USB Cable for charging and syncing the device. It is compatible with the Apple USB Power Adapter and sells for $19.

Editorial comments on the announcement can be found in these Backstage articles: So Last Year’s iPod shuffle Rumor Was True (Partially): iPod shuffle 3G and One More Thing: Apple’s New Approach to iPod “Generations”.

Also see: Ten Surprises - Good + Bad - in Apple’s Third-Gen iPod shuffle.

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Comments

41

I am sure I am saying nothing new:  Great concept, but the controls on the headphones isn’t for everyone - I know a lot of readers here have non-Apple earbuds/headphones - and using their own defeats the purpose of the new shuffle.  Why a male voice for the Mac and a female for the PC?  Where are the colors?

Posted by Beckie on March 11, 2009 at 11:15 PM (PDT)

42

This can’t be good.It sounds like my digital dictionary…
Man,they can just put a tiny display on this~
By the way you can check the sound of the new shuffle on the official webside.

Posted by M on March 12, 2009 at 12:33 AM (PDT)

43

I’ll stick with my Sansa Clip thanks very much - STILL the best mini player on the market.

Posted by Geoff on March 12, 2009 at 1:34 AM (PDT)

44

the first thing i advise my friends to do after buying an ipod - is to throw away the free earphones, and invest in a good pair of sennheiser earphones. no way am i buying an ipod shuffle that prevents me from using other, better earphones. bad move, apple! protectionist policies never helped anyone!

Posted by Rituparna Choudhury on March 12, 2009 at 3:55 AM (PDT)

45

If i pay the shipping, can you send them to me? I really like the apple headphones for work, but they tend to break after 6 months, mostly because I have a physical job. but I will never pay $29 for them, seriously if anyone wants to I would pay the shipping for them if they are going to through them away.

With regards to the new shuffle, I have 2 - 1gb first generation and 3 - 1 gb 2nd generations, I was waiting for the new ipod shuffle to see if I wanted it or the new sony mp3 player built into the headphones, looks like apple made the decision for me.

I guess I am in the minority here, but if I put the music on my ipod then i don’t really need to know what song is playing. the shuffle is for music on the go, if I want to know the name of the song I am listening to I will get the nano or classic.

guess I will be looking for some cheap 2nd gens for sale to stock up.

Posted by Jonathan Downey on March 12, 2009 at 4:38 AM (PDT)

46

It’s like they couldn’t think of anything else to do with the shuffle product ... their simplest iPod product with the most complex and counter intuitive control methodology. Proof that even big wealthy companies can drop the ball. I suspect most people want a) a screen and b) to at least have the option of using something other than Apple earphones. I use an iPhone now so it’s of no interest to me, but if i wanted a small capacity music player I’d use my previously regular mobile phone with 3.5mm socket e.g. Nokia 5310 which even has a better SQ than my 2G shuffle, and a screen, and (unlike 3G shuffle) I could use my Shure SE530s with it!!!

Posted by drevo_uk in UK on March 12, 2009 at 6:09 AM (PDT)

47

If the new shuffle came with a short adapter cord with the controls on it that you could plug in a regular set of headphones into, I’d consider it. But as it is, there is no way I’d buy it, I still prefer the 1stgen for the usb plug, I hate trying to find my dock cable every time i want to reload or charge.

Posted by Brent on March 12, 2009 at 8:12 AM (PDT)

48

Wacko’s March 11th post hit the nail on the head: who needs more electronic gadget chatting in public places? This will only add to our already add-addicted society. I still don’t get why all of the controls need to be on the headphone. I suppose it’s a bit of a learning curve, memorizing the new ways to access, skip and control the playlists, however the design doesn’t make up for the lack of user-friendliness.

I was about to return my (brand new LOL!) 2G shuffle, but hesitate after reading these comments and watching Apple’s intro video. It pains me to say that, being a die-hard Apple fan for decades now…

Posted by Ariane C on March 12, 2009 at 9:14 AM (PDT)

49

FACTS:- alot of people use Shuffles for workouts; alot of people fun for workouts; apple headphone are horrible to run with; apple headphone are needed for this Shuffle

RESULTS- I won’t be buying this anytime soon

Posted by jeff on March 12, 2009 at 3:24 PM (PDT)

50

Looks like the greedy accountants beat our the consumer-friendly folks inside Apple.

Selling this without automatic compatability with standard headphones is one big F. U. to the community of iPod fans.

Posted by j on March 12, 2009 at 6:26 PM (PDT)

51

i have the new shuffle 4gb, its my first mp3 player and i cant complain about anything, all the features work great, it fits a lot of music, and its so tiny that even if you swung it around by the headphone chord it would not disconnect, the headphone controls is great and easy so you dont have to reach in your pocket everytime. also the stainless steel clip gives it a great look, the people at the Apple store said that other companies wil come out with their own headphones that are compatible with this ipod so that should not be a worry, basically stop talking like its a terrible ipod unless you have one in your hand or have used one, i like it alot and plan on keeping, i would have only chosen from black or silver so the colors dont matter to me, oh and who is gonna sell an MP3 player with 4GB for less than $80??? IDK i looked at all other MP3 players before buying this one and all other ones were right around the same price range, this was the cheapest 4gb i could get, ok i think thats all.

Posted by hi on March 19, 2009 at 10:24 AM (PDT)

52

This is retarded. My 4th-gen 4GB Nano just started having battery problems (sometimes it shuts off after playing one song and I can’t get it started again unless I plug it in) after 3 years, and I thought of getting a shuffle as I don’t really watch the videos I have on the small Nano anyway. However, not being able to use my own earphones (that have decent bass for $40) and being stuck with Apple’s crappy set is a deal-breaker. The set that came with my Nano suppressed the sound so much that I had to turn it up to Max Just to Hear It, and while I assume Apple fixed this, they came apart so easily I don’t want to risk getting them, then having to order a new set online or find some store that sells them. I have never seen an “Apple Store” here in Ontario, much less been to one, so I have to rely on places like The Source and Best Buy for new earphones. Apple seems to be ignoring everybody but their iPod Touch/iPhone market and their Mac users. I think that, when my iPod finally dies, I’ll just get a Sansa MP3 player or something.

Posted by FuRrY321 on March 28, 2010 at 10:12 AM (PDT)

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