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Next-gen, touchscreen iPods coming in August?

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By Charles Starrett

Contributing Editor
Published: Wednesday, July 11, 2007
News Categories: iPod

DigiTimes is reporting that Taiwan-based panel manufacturer Wintek will supply Apple with touchscreen panels for a next-generation touchscreen iPod, set to launch in August. According to sources at upstream suppliers, Wintek will begin shipping capacitive touchscreen panels in the second half of 2007 that will be used with customers’ own software and ICs. The report goes on to claim that Apple is also placing touchscreen panel orders with Balda for the iPhone.

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Comments

21

Well, I agree that we haven’t even seen or heard a thing about a touch-screen iPod.  No proof has been presented.  So why are we arguing about something that does not yet exist?

If Apple does go the way of touch-screen with the iPod, I am sure that they would do it in a way that would allow the user to keep it in the Pocket while using it.  They could have the standard click wheel on the back side of the iPod instead of the Chrome back, and the touchscreen could be on the front.  That would give you the choice.

The iPod was made for your pocket, so I couldn’t see them ever making it less functional - or a two handed activity.  If it became a two handed activity, I would not be able to purchase a new iPod, because at work I don’t have the time to constantly grab my iPod and navigate it.  It is much easier to click wheel the thing on a moments notice.

Trust Apple, they will do the right thing for all owners.  They wouldn’t kill their biggest money maker that easily.

Posted by MCW on July 12, 2007 at 1:46 PM (PDT)

22

For most applications, the iPhone is plenty easy to use with one hand.  Web browsing and text entry are the exceptions, and you won’t be entering text in iPod mode.

You are right that needing to view the screen to do anything is kind of a hassle if you’re used to “clicking blind” to advance tracks, pause, etc.  The iPhone responds identically to the iPod to commands sent via the dock port, so i suppose a simple remote might solve this problem while still allowing all the flexibility, power and wow factor of the touchscreen.

Posted by dasmb on July 12, 2007 at 1:50 PM (PDT)

23

dasmb is correct. The iPhone’s iPod functionality is very much tailored to being used with one hand, either in landscape or normal mode. In fact, I’m not sure I agree with B.Mick’s assertion that a touchscreen is better suited to two-hand use, save for “speed typing.” Probably the most impressive thing about the iPhone is the responsiveness and ease of use of the touchscreen in all of its applications, but particularly for media functions.

Now, as for having to look at the screen to flick through tracks, I’ll agree that’s a limitation, but the volume control on the side of the iPhone is easy enough to manipulate blindly. Maybe on a touchscreen iPhone, they can incorporate simple forward and reverse buttons as well that one has the option of using while in traffic, or while jogging with the player in an armband, for instance.

Posted by Flippy Hambone on July 12, 2007 at 5:53 PM (PDT)

24

I don’t know if I’m excited about a touch-screen ipod. I mean, part of what’s so appealing about 5th generation (and of course previous versions) is the scroll wheel. There are lots of navigation steps I can do with my Ipod in my pocket, only because the ease of navigating the scroll-wheel. How can one do this with touch-screen? Sure, it’ll be fancy. I had my iphone for 2 weeks before returning it, so I know how neat the touch-screen is, but I just don’t think it suits everyone. My humble opinion.

Posted by Billy on July 14, 2007 at 4:22 PM (PDT)

25

The concept of a touchscreen ipod sounds cool. The things that would make or break it for me is. Price, Gigs, Screen Resolution & Battery Life because the problem with the current video is that after half a tv show im on half battery life. The battery life of the current ipods are simply crap. It would be better if they had a detachable battery. But knowing apple that will happen when pigs fly out of my ###. If it had all those things id deffinitly buy it.

Posted by JT on July 16, 2007 at 6:00 PM (PDT)

26

What would be amazing if if they could achieve a new player with SOLID-STATE memory, forget about the touchscreen nonsense!

Posted by big2planker on July 18, 2007 at 8:14 PM (PDT)

27

@big2planker - the nano is a solid state device.  There won’t be a standard size iPod w/ flash storage any time soon because the largest 3.5” solid state hard drives by samsung and such are only 64gb.  And that’s in a form factor much larger than an entire iPod, so theres no way they’d be able to get 80gb, or even 40gb probably into an iPod and still have room for a battery, display, and electronics.

I expect apple will announce a 16:10 aspect ratio touchscreen ipod this fall, which will have buttons on the side for common functions (rew, play/pause, fwd) and some sort of volume control on the other side.  I think they’ll make the nano a bit bigger, but keep the clickwheel on it, because a touchscreen on a nano would be unwieldy to say the least.

Posted by burzv on July 23, 2007 at 12:07 PM (PDT)

28

y not just make a wheel on the touch screen and when u play a video or song it goes a way

Posted by will on July 26, 2007 at 7:58 AM (PDT)

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