The biggest change to the iPod nano has come. A few years back, Apple introduced a watch-face like 1 in x 1 in touch screen square that I felt was their weakest iPod nano. One would navigate the screen purely through touch as there was no home button. Many people have complained about it being too small and shuffle-like (such as myself). I feel that the last generation iPod nano will be the iPod shuffle in a year or two once the price to make such a thing isn’t as expensive. The watch idea was taken into full effect as 3rd party manufacturers made wristbands that would fit the iPod and make it into a watch, which I think Apple was going for. The idea itself sparked the concept that Apple might be working on an iPhone watch but it has since been mostly discarded. Apple, it seems, has used the iPod nano as their design testing device with more changes to the chassis each time a new one comes out. Apple, this year, has returned to the long, thin, skinny chassis with a twist…
The major concept of Apple’s event was the enlargement of screen sizes and the iPod nano is no exception. Featuring a 2.5 inch touch screen, the iPod nano goes back to the long thin chassis. I predicted and even suggested to Apple that they make a larger touch screen on the nano and whether knowingly or not, they listened and I’m glad they did.
The iPod nano has now become more iOS like through the use of the home button. It features the same concept as the home button of iOS devices- bring me back home. It is a step forward into the iOSification for Apple’s second most popular iPod (second only to the iOS device, iPod touch).
The Chassis, as always, is colored and is advertised on Apple’s site as being glass and smooth aluminum. The iPod comes in seven different colors (all colors are featured with white as well), gray, purple, yellow, blue, green (my favorite), black and pink. It has the thinnest chassis of any iPod ever- 5.4 mm thin and it is about the size of a credit card. The chassis is made out of aluminum and glass, as all of the products Apple announced this week.
Connections and buttons
In terms of buttons, for the first time ever, the iPod nano will feature two new distinct iOS device features. First, the aforementioned iOS-like home button. I say iOS-LIKE because it isn’t the exact design as the iOS home button. It also has, for the first time ever, a volume control bar on the side of the iPod. In terms of connecting, it features the same 3.5 mm headphone jack, but it features the new controversial 5 pin dock connector at this charger and USB, marking the first time ever in five years that Apple has changed it’s dock connector. Whether or not it was for the better, I will discuss in another article.
I mentioned iOS-like features earlier but the new interface, while iOS inspired, is not iOS itself. Icons for “apps” are circles instead of rounded squares giving them a sort of PS Vita look but better and more organized. In pictures, it appears it has two home screen pages and like iOS, show tiny gray circles on the button to include page # and amount of pages. Don’t get too excited because, it doesn’t have wifi therefore no App Store. Whether Apple will release a modified app store to buy apps remained to be seen, but that’s what the iPod touch is for so I doubt it.
The music app on the iPod nano is very similar to the music app in iOS. Search music or browse by artist, album, genre, composer, title etc. just as before in the old iPod nano but now you can actually see the results due to the larger screen. Genius is a built in feature of the new iPod nano that allows you to play songs similar to the one you are currently listening to, so you can keep the mood created by the original song.
The video app is, again, very similar to iOS. You can watch TV shows, video podcasts, movies, music videos etc. If it’s a video, it works! Tap the 2.5 inch multi-tocuh display to stop, skip, play, rewind etc. just as in iOS devices. It really is cool.
Bluetooth is absolutely a strong new feature of the iPod nano. With it, you can pair the iPod nano with wireless headphones, speakers or car audio systems. It of course takes no wires so it’s just wireless audio coming from your speakers. It is a very cool feature that whenever I get the new iPod nano, will be a widely at use feature and I am very glad they brought it.
FM radio has been a feature in the iPod touch before so it isn’t new but they brought interesting new changes to it. You can now pause live radio for up to 15 minutes which is incredible. You can rewind back 15 minutes to catch something you might have missed or wanted to go back to and then you can zoom back up to live radio. The only thing I’ve ever seen pause live radio is an app on iOS, so it really is a cool feature.
Apple has changed it’s earphones. For me, it’s thank goodness as i never really like those headphones, I usually gave them away to someone who didn’t have any since my 3rd-party headphones are way better. Apple did say this time however, that these headphones, called EarPods can sound better than my expensive, high-quality sound. So as soon as I can get my hands on them, I will compare the two. I hope what they say is true, so other people can get higher quality sound than what they are used to.
As aforementioned, Apple changed it’s dock connector and whether or not that was a good idea or not remains to be seen. However, I feel that if Apple does something, it must be for a reason since such a company knows what it is doing. Apple says it is thinner, lighter, smaller and can connect to the iPod on both sides like the MagSafe connector on the MacBooks. They will offer a 30-Pin to Lightning adapter so don’t worry, you can still use 30-pin, as manufacturers for cases, accessories etc. are switching to the new standard. However, with wireless capabilities of BlueTooth, it will become less and less relevant anyway.
Fitness features will put a pedometer in your pocket and while you to connect wireless via Bluetooth to heart-rate monitors. In addition, you can connect to nikeplus.com and keep track of your progress. Photos, of course, will look better with the bigger screen. It will come with the same iOS features such as pinch-and-zoom. You will have access to Podcasts through iTunes and you can put Podcasts onto your iPod nano. Accessibility features are all new with the ability to help blind people use the iPod. These features are known as some of the most helpful to those who can’t seen and are universally known by the disabled. It comes with VoiceOver, Invert Colors and Mono Audio.
The iPod nano only sells at one model now which is a 16 GB model at $149 which I believe to be a bargain becaus of all of the great features.
The iPod nano is bound to be the best selling and quite frankly, the best iPod nano yet. Perhaps this is the iPod nano in which they will stick with, because it is truly the best one they have made, no if’s and’s or but’s about it.
Stay tuned for my report on the iPod touch and iPhone 5.
Thanks for reading,