Apple today released new versions of their iTunes software as well as updated versions of iPods. This release was hardly surprising and, as predicted, there wasn’t anything unexpected or widely diverging from the rumors that had been floating around the Internet.
The take-aways are really fewer than I had expected.
iTunes 8 is out and it’s cool. It seems to combine features found in web radio stations like Pandora and Last.fm where it will predict what you would like and automatically associate similar styles of music into playlists. They call this the ‘genius’ feature.
The Nano and Touch have both received a redesign, both in shape and price. The iPod Touch and iPhone have a software update that will be made available on Friday. It’s also free for users of the 2.0 Touch software.
The Nano has an accelerometer, like the iPhone and iPod touch, and also has a microphone on the back. I don’t know if there is a time or size limit on the recordings, but at $199 for 16GB version, it would make a high quality voice recorder for auctioneers to use to catalog merchandise or to record auctions.
The iPod Touch has a speaker. Thank god. That’s probably the biggest feature that was lacking from it. We’ve been using my girlfriend’s Touch as a timer when cooking, and it doesn’t work very well when you can’t hear it ding.
The one feature for which I was hoping in the Touch that didn’t apparently seem to be added is GPS. I had hoped that they would find a way to push this feature into the new models. I’m on the fence right now as to whether I’ll get an iPhone or an iPod Touch. I’m going to do one or the other in the next month or two, and had they put a GPS in the Touch I’d have an easy decision. I may yet have to brave leaving Alltel for the AT&T void that is Kansas.