Based on numerous questions from our readers, we’ve put together this short list of new facts on the second-generation iPod shuffle in advance of our upcoming comprehensive review. Enjoy!
(1) Packaging: The second-generation iPod shuffle comes in a clear hard plastic box that’s identical in size and shape to the ones used for second-generation iPod nanos; all that’s different is the white card stock insert, the manuals, and the accessories.
(2) Lights: Wondering about indicator lights? Apple has hidden them in pinhole-sized dots on the top and bottom right sides of the new shuffle. But instead of using one light to show you battery status and the other to indicate the shuffle’s responses to commands or synchronization, both of the new lights flash at the same time and tell you the same thing.
(3) Battery: Since there’s no battery check button on the new shuffle, you can check the shuffle’s battery charge only by flipping the power off and then on again.
The indicator will flash green for a “good” charge, amber for a “low” charge, red for a “very low” charge, or nothing for no charge.
(4) Clip: There is no obvious way to remove the rear clip – it does not use an exposed, easily removable pin. And it’s thicker and a little larger than the clip found in Apple’s iPod Radio Remote, though otherwise very similar. You may wonder if the clip is really made from metal, or from coated plastic.
(5) Size and Build: Though the new shuffle does indeed inspire “wow, that’s small” reactions from first-time viewers, it’s actually thicker and a hair wider than the current-generation iPod nano.
Its metal casing feels substantial and strong in your hand; the aluminum appears to be at least as thick as the nano’s shell.
(6) Earphones: It comes with Apple’s old, less impressive earphones. We’re not happy about this.
(7) Dock: The new, packed-in dock has no moving parts – the plastic piece in the well appears to be there as a spacer to guarantee that the proprietary charging and syncing headphone port plug (with three white rings) aligns properly with the shuffle’s charging and syncing connector. Apple’s second indicator light – the one on the shuffle’s bottom – is there to be seen when you’ve flipped the shuffle over for docking, and want to see battery or data transfer status.