Apple unveils iPod nano (updated) | iLounge News

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Apple unveils iPod nano (updated)

imageAt its special event in San Francisco today, Apple introduced the iPod nano, a completely new iPod that’s thinner than a standard #2 pencil and weighs only 1.5 ounces. The iPod mini replacement is available in 2GB ($199) and 4GB ($249) capacities in either white or black designs. The ultra-compact device features a high-resolution color screen, Click Wheel, and offers up to 14 hours of battery life.

“iPod nano is the biggest revolution since the original iPod,” said Apple CEO Steve Jobs. “iPod nano is a full-featured iPod in an impossibly small size, and it’s going to change the rules for the entire portable music market.”

The iPod nano has a standard 30-pin Dock Connector (allowing it to work with many current accessories), is compaible with both Mac and Windows via USB 2.0, and offers the ability to display photos and album art. Because it uses flash memory instead of a tiny hard drive for music storage, it provides completely skip-free playback. The updated iPod software also adds a new stopwatch, world clock and screen lock applications.

The iPod nano is available worldwide immediately through the online Apple Store. Apple’s retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers will begin receiving shipments on or before this weekend..

imageiPod nano Accessories

Alongside the new iPod nano, Apple announced several new accessories for the device, which the company calls the “most fashionable and wearable iPod ever.” The new gear includes lanyard headphones ($39), which integrate the headphone cables into the lanyard; armbands in five colors, including gray, pink, blue, red and green ($29 each); a set of silicone “Tubes” in five colors, including pink, purple, blue, green and clear ($29); and dock ($29).

Update

iLounge editors Jeremy Horwitz and Dennis Lloyd have had the opportunity to test the iPod nano and check out all of its upcoming accessories. On the accessories front, most interesting is the fact that the new iPod nano Dock is the first such Apple device to include a “variable line-out” port, which attenuates the standard line-out signal downwards from the iPod’s Click Wheel. The company’s silicone “nano Tubes” provide complete protection for the entire iPod nano save its bottom ports, including thin coverage for the Click Wheel and top Hold switch. The lanyard headphones plug simultaneously into the iPod’s bottom headphone port and Dock Connector, using the Connector solely as a securing mechanism and the headphone port as a means to direct headphone audio. Armbands in all of the various colors are similar in perforated arm design to Incase’s recently reviewed iPod and iPod mini neoprene armbands, except open on their tops.

We’ve also learned that the iPod nano will be the company’s first to include the “Universal Dock Adapter,” a plastic plate which guarantees iPod nano docking compatibility with any accessory designed to include it. Nearly 20 companies are already planning products around the UDA design, which is similar to the plastic plates included with speaker accessories from Altec Lansing, Bose, iHome and JBL, and will eliminate the need for participating companies to design iPod-specific plates in the future. The UDA will come in the nano box alongside a USB-to-Dock Connector cable, headphones, the nano hardware, and iTunes 5 software.

We tested the iPod nano briefly with both stock and high-end Ultimate Ears UE-10 Pro earphones, and found the audio quality of the newest iPod to be similar to existing iPods. Bass performance does not appear to have been markedly improved in the nano, and other audio and feature functionality often requested by iLounge readers (enhanced equalizers, FM tuner, etcetera) has not been included. However, the nano’s new stopwatch and lap timer works well, and features a nice metallic interface similar to the one in Apple’s Mac OS X operating system. The new security screen lock and world clock work well and are also easy to set.

The iPod nano will be able to display photos and transfer them from iTunes. According to Apple representatives, it will not be compatible with Apple’s or other photo connectors for straight-to-nano digital picture transfers, and will not be compatible with voice recorder devices, either. Like the iPod mini, nano is solely intended to be a device for media playback and storage, not creation.

Screen quality on the iPod nano is precisely what you’d expect from Apple: highly visible, with bright white backlighting and good resolution comparable to that used on the full-sized color iPod. Despite its small size, it displays text and photographs legibly, and with ease. It duplicates in all key ways the interface of the color iPod, and plays back all the same genres of audio - audiobooks, podcasts, music - without any problems.

Of the new products introduced today, iPod nano is unquestionably the superior, smarter offering. It takes all of the most popular features from the full-sized color iPod and makes them work in a smaller, cheaper enclosure. It’s especially stunning in that it replicates the look and feel of a full-sized iPod in a matching enclosure, rather than shrinking the iPod mini’s anodized aluminum body, as most expected it to do. The black version is especially slick, with its dark gray Click Wheel, but the white version offers familiar beauty in a small size. We cannot wait to provide our full review.

« More than 1,000 iPod accessories now available

Motorola ROKR iTunes phone introduced (updated) »

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Comments

61

I’m so happy, and so sad. I wanted a new smaller ipod… but not to only hold 1000 songs!!!!!!! I sold my Mini because of the size! I’m having a mixed feeling.

Posted by Joe on September 7, 2005 at 8:25 PM (CDT)

62

I don’t think they are actually getting rid of the mini. I think within in the next two months we will be seeing the Ipod mini as the new 5th gen full sized Ipod and the Ipod nano has took the Ipod minis placement.

Posted by Robototobor on September 7, 2005 at 8:25 PM (CDT)

63

I agree with rene as my previous post i think they shouldnt have killed the mini because it was a nice looking play and they shouldve upgraded the mini and add some new features that everyone was waiting for.Myself im going to keep my mini and wait for better iPods too come out from apple.

Posted by Bob on September 7, 2005 at 8:27 PM (CDT)

64

Apple - Make a Black 60 gig and my money is yours.

Posted by zymonk on September 7, 2005 at 8:44 PM (CDT)

65

I bought one 30-45 mins after the announcment. i get it in the mail hopefully next week! i can’t wait!!!!!

Posted by Eric on September 7, 2005 at 8:50 PM (CDT)

66

they should not have gotten rid of the mini!!! they should have just made a new mini with more games, better battery, color screen, and all the other cool things they can make!

Posted by K-Rey on September 7, 2005 at 8:55 PM (CDT)

67

I guarantee you that iPod Mini will resurface sooner or later. Apple had to take it off the market if they wanted to promote nano…most people would pass up 4gb-color-screen-ultrathin-ipod for 6gb mini if they were to spend $249. This was to market nano as the only option at $199-$249 range.

IMO, when 1.8inch hard drive makers (such as Toshiba) starts making 10gb drives, expect to see iPod mini come back into play then, probably at $279 or something like that (with nano price drop to $179-$229.

This was a very shrewd move by Jobs.

Posted by Steve Jobless on September 7, 2005 at 9:12 PM (CDT)

68

Kind of a yawner, really.  While indeed it is very pretty, Apple is just further parsing the market.

I too was hoping for something with more functional wow.  Maybe that’s coming next month - I hope!

Posted by Obadiah on September 7, 2005 at 9:54 PM (CDT)

69

The iPod nano seems cool, but here are some comments from a different standpoint.

I know that 2GB USB flash drives are approximately $180, which makes the iPod nano considered cheap at $200 since it has a screen.  Too bad this thing isn’t as accessible as a USB flash drive like the Shuffle is,otherwise, I’d quickly replace my USB flash drive with this. (Extending a wire from it doesn’t count).

I know the Nano is intended to play music, but if this were more accessible as a flash drive….I would be able to tap into the large flash storage.

Posted by quickstrike on September 7, 2005 at 10:40 PM (CDT)

70

I just retired my 15gb 3G where it sits in a speaker dock in my living room because I just ordered a 4gb Nano this morning. Now I sit and wait for the oncoming accessories being developed at this very moment!

Posted by casper on September 7, 2005 at 10:51 PM (CDT)

71

I think that the Shuffle had been noted for better bass response, and I am dissappointed that the Nano does not share the push pull output stage of the Shuffle, which is a better quality sound. On the other hand, you can store AIFF full quality files on the Nano, you can not do that with the Shuffle, I do like the design of the headphone port, you pick it up and it is facing the right way, no cords in the view of the screen, and when you are not looking at it, who cares what orientation its in. Put it in your pocket and go. I like flash memory more than hard drives, and the 4 gig is ok, but I was hoping for 6 gigs, so much easier to copy a movie file and go! Think about that, its smaller size means that you can carry it like a set of keys, all the time, and pick up files from your friends. I will buy the black 4gig eventually, but I want a 20” Apple Cinema Display first…need to find a money printing press to buy all this stuff. I just bought a Mac Mini, and I was thinking how cool it would be to have a black onyx looking top on my Mini to match the Black iPod nano….please Apple? User upgrade?

Posted by stephen on September 7, 2005 at 11:24 PM (CDT)

72

The iPod nano is mostly Apple marketing hype. It measures 3.5 x 1.6 x 0.27 inches and weighs 1.5 ounces. It is not even close to being one-billionth the size of a regular iPod! A true nano iPod would measure about 1/250 x 1/400 x 1/1500 of an inch. Its largest dimension would be about equal to the diameter of a human hair. This would make it very difficult to see with the unaided eye and even more difficult to operate. I don’t think the technology to manufacture such a small iPod exists currently.

Posted by Shyh-Shiun Wu on September 7, 2005 at 11:25 PM (CDT)

73

Looks more evolutionary than revolutionary.  The size is impressive, and I kinda like that screen lock function.

I’m just waiting for the arguments to start.  Is is a 4G?  A 5G?  How about a 4.5G?  :-)

Posted by Stymyx on September 7, 2005 at 11:26 PM (CDT)

74

I think the iPod nano looks great.  Not to happy it’s flash base but the reviews report no problems so I’m sold.  Yup, I ordered the 2GB black model today online during lunch and I can’t wait to add it to my iPod collection.

Posted by LDRiPod in Redondo Beach on September 7, 2005 at 11:32 PM (CDT)

75

i just called best buy and they said that if my ipod mini needs to be replaced they will just give me an ipod nano!!!

Posted by Cesar on September 8, 2005 at 12:13 AM (CDT)

76

i have to agree with Robototobor. they had to take the mini off of the market temporarily so when the ipod video comes out (eventually) they can call the current ipod the ipod ‘mini’
and the 5th gen video ipod the ‘ipod’
then the lineup would look like this:

shuffe(flash), nano(flash w/ screen), mini(hard drive w/ screen), and ipod(hard drive video player)

Posted by daniel on September 8, 2005 at 12:25 AM (CDT)

77

OMG, this is awesome.
but the prob is, i want it to have video play support capabilities.
since it can play music and view photos, the vid support would make it perfect.
the new screen is awesome, full color ^_^
and it’a very thin, i love it.

Posted by Znender on September 8, 2005 at 12:56 AM (CDT)

78

i want 1!!!!

Posted by mikailp on September 8, 2005 at 1:46 AM (CDT)

79

The way I see it, the Nano is what was said somwhere before “what the shuffle should have been” and ends up it is much of what the Mini should have end being.

Points are:
1. Shuffle has been kinda too ‘just released’ to be ditched.They must have zillions of those still in store to just dump it. Plus, Shuffle is the greatest rip-off in Apple’s product line right now. A pen drive with a play button. Even here in Brazil, computer stores give pen-drives as gifts when you make a nice buy. Although, size mattered until the nano.
2. Mini, although great selling had already cooled down into some regular supply/demand dynamic. Proof is they are giving it away for students and there have been rumours of Apple negotiating with Overstock(ed?).com. Although, it needed a color screen until the nano.
3. Flash price + color would bring the Shuffle too much into the Mini price range, as demonstrated by the 2gb Nano.
4. Flash price + color would bring the Mini too much into Ipod price range, as demonstrated by the absence of larger-than-4gb Nano.
5. Colors are much easier to add by means of cases, which most everybody gets ‘cause iPods are a damned scratchy thingie. hence Apple-made silicon covers and arm-bands.
6. Clock is ticking for the Season’s shopping spree.

So, all in all, I think Apple made the right move. Keep the cheapest line of which they probably have great stock of. Introduce a great new mid-range product in time for Xmas, merging most of what people liked in one product and wished for in the other. And remember that now all Mini lovers can get 6gb ones on a discount price so, basically, EVERYONE gets to have a Merry Christmas this year.

Next year is what I’m worried about.

All-black full-size iPods? I like it.
A tiny bump in full-size iPod storage? I like it.
Video iPods? Nifty.
Bluetooth? HEAVEN!!!

Posted by Giu on September 8, 2005 at 2:03 AM (CDT)

80

so this is what they shouldve done The nano and the rokr phone’s better attributes should be combined into one device. The great thing about the nano ipod is that its soo thin, holds 1000 songs and comes in a new color, black. The concept behind the phone is awesome but it just doesnt hold enough songs to make it worth while and its BIG! Instead of replicating the design of the motorola e790 why not just use the razor. Its thin and ...it comes in black. Then just stick in the storage of 1000 songs and boom uve got something amazing. So this is what im going to do ...skip the phone its really just not attractive and thats why we spend money on these things anyway to make others ew and aw over them ... Im going go out and get the black razor and the new black nano that way at least im color coordinated. Jeez

Posted by Mack on September 8, 2005 at 2:48 AM (CDT)

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