Burton AMP Jacket and New iPod Solution

iLounger Travis Stratford submitted a news item detailing his frustration about the initial incompatibility of new iPods and the Burton Amp Jacket. For anyone with new iPod and Amp Jacket, there is a solution: the Amp Jacket Interface by Dr Bott.

A few weeks ago, I purchased the Burton AMP jacket from the Apple Store. I knew Apple would soon release new iPods, so I waited a few weeks before buying my iPod that would accompany the jacket. As soon as the new iPods were released, I purchased a 30 GB version at the NYC Apple Store (the first day they went on sale). That same night, I took the iPod home and “installed” it into my jacket. To my astonishment and horror, the new iPod did not work properly in my jacket (the ear-plug cord did not sit firmly in the new iPod and the jacket’s sleeve “controls” did not operate correctly.) …
The next day, I called Apple and let them know I was having problems. At first, they thought something was defective with either the jacket or the iPod; but they later informed me the new iPods are NOT compatible with the AMP Jacket.

With this being the case—and after spending over $1,000 on both items—I was expecting some increased level of customer service to make the jacket ‘compatible’ with the iPod. Come on, Apple is a technology powerhouse—I’m sure they could figure something out. At the very least, I was expecting some sympathy or understanding. But instead of offering to help me resolve the situation, they simply told me they ‘did not support’ the jacket because they no longer offered it for sale. They said I could return the iPod but that I couldn’t return the jacket. Basically, they told me I was out of luck.

After my disappointing discussions with Apple, I contacted Burton directly and inquired what they could do for me. They offered no solutions either but instead told me to check with Radio Shack in the coming months. The Burton rep seemed to think that Radio Shack makes adapters for all possible appliances and applications. Why in the world would Radio Shack mass produce an adapter that only a small handful of people would end up using with their iPod and AMP Jacket? Anyway, Burton offered no other solution and told me I was out-of-luck.

I also contacted SOFTswitch, the company that manufactures the jacket’s built-in electronics. After receiving an initial email acknowledgment of the problem—and a note promising more information—I have heard nothing more. Repeated emails have gone unanswered. Am I totally out-of-luck or is there a solution to this?

Needless to say, I feel cheated by Apple (and by Burton to a lesser extent). Has anyone found a solution for using the new iPods with the Burton AMP jacket? Can anyone contact Steve Jobs and have him slap around his customer service people?

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