New iPod Touches feature built-in speaker, volume control, Nike Plus

And now the expected iPod Touch upgrade has been announced. It's thinner — notice a pattern? — with an iPhone 3G like contour design. The same old, same old: 3.5-inch display, accelerometer, WiFi, App Store. But now there's a volume control on the side, a built-in speaker and Genius playlist creation. Meh. For sports fans: built-in Nike Plus. Now your iPod Touch can keep track of your gelatinous lethargy or Speed Force dimensional quavering. Stated battery life: 36 hours for music, 6 for video. All in line with the first gen. The new iPod Touch firmware — 2.1, natch — comes stock, and if you've already upgraded your first gen Touch to 2.0, you'll get it for free. Those who haven't broken their 2.0 hymen will have to pay $9.95 for the pleasure, though. (As an ancillary note, the iPhone Firmware Update 2.1 comes out this Friday.) And now the prices. The new iPod Touches comes in the same MSRPs as the old ones. The 8GB is $229, the 16GB is $299 and 32GB is $399. That brings the Touch within $30 of the iPhone 3G 8GBs subsidized price, equals the 16GBs subsidized price and logically extrapolates a mythological 32GB iPhone 3G's subsidized price. My jaw didn't drop, but that price drop does make the iPod Touch a bit less lame of a duck in the otherwise venerable iPod lineup. iPod Touch [Apple]
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26 Responses to New iPod Touches feature built-in speaker, volume control, Nike Plus

  1. Baldhead says:

    A built- in speaker…

    Yay. Apple found a way to make mp3’s sound shittier. You know there will be some jackass on the bus playing something by Crazyfrog on your bus, distorting like mad because that’s what those speakers do, the very day after this comes out.

  2. Drew Blood says:

    The price drop on this is pretty tempting. May have to snag one soon.

  3. Jack says:

    The iPod Shuffles seem to have colors to match the Nanos now.

    Also, what’s impressive about the built in speaker is it makes the iPod Touch a true mini TV set. No headphones!

  4. dculberson says:

    I didn’t say it was morally wrong at all – I said I thought it was sad. I’m sorry if it came off as a personal attack, I did not mean it to be one. But I found it frustrating when you sidestepped my point instead of addressing it head on.

    Saying “It’s okay to me that Apple has a higher margin on the higher capacity iPod touch” is different from “You pay more for baked break than raw flour and yeast for a reason.” To me the latter is a weasel tactic taken by people with some personal investment in the argument trying to “win” regardless of the actual content.

  5. Jack says:

    I find it sadder that you are basing prices on raw material cost and don’t factor in manufacturing, engineering, design costs.

    There’s practically no cost for an SD card beyond materials, manufacturing and marketing because it’s a universal format.

    You pay more for baked break than raw flour and yeast for a reason.

  6. Itsumishi says:

    Hey the iPod headphones do a good enough job of that anyway, even when plugged into someone’s ear!

    If there was a way I could rid the entire world of those shitty fucking headphones [with their crappy little holes that supposedly make it safer to listen to your music at higher volume, but probably raise the chance of you getting your teeth kicked in by annoyed commuters by 500%] then I would do it in a second, even if it involved mass genocide of the fore mentioned listeners of such headphones.

    Actually scratch the word even from that last sentence and replace it with especially.

  7. fauxScot says:

    I’ve had a 16GB Touch for a while.

    A speaker would be nice. Sometimes, I just want the thing playing quietly in the background and/or would like sound with video. Great idea, even if it is not audiophile quality. Design is all about optimization and for limited purposes, a tiny little speaker is fine.

    Ditto 32GB. I use mine for tunes and photos. It is far from cramped at 16GB, but when it comes to capacity, if a little is good, a lot is better.

    I ALREADY paid $399 for 16GB, so I would sure as hell pay $399 for 32. I don’t really care if it’s a $5 part or not.

    FWIW, I also have the tech skills to crack that SOB open and solder in my own damned chips, but it sure isn’t worth $70 for me to do that. Nor is it for anyone making more than an entry level salary or who has to ask Dad for permission to borrow a soldering iron.

    Apple is a for-profit firm. Product stratification is one way they do that. That’s why my Apple stock is a ways up from the $15 or so I paid for it a long while back.

    Rock on, Apple.

  8. Anonymous says:

    iPod Touch 1.1
    iPod Nano 1.3

  9. AnnaBananaa says:

    I just took my MacBook Pro into the Genius Bar to have something checked out and asked the guy if a new iTouch was coming out to drop the price of the old one. He said “I know something big is happening Tuesday, but I have no idea what it is”.

    I figured it was the Nano I’d been hearing about on here and the only reason I didn’t buy the iTouch was because they wanted $500 to fix my computer!

  10. Anonymous says:

    So where are the built in speakers!!

  11. retropc says:

    I gathered from the Macworld coverage that:

    1. The new nanos have a voice recording function, and the new headphones have a built-in mic (in the cord?).

    2. The new headphones will also work with the new touch.

    I’m surprised that I haven’t seen anyone putting these two together, and seeing this as paving the way for VOIP on the touch.

  12. michaelportent says:

    I love my first gen iTouch. They didn’t change it enough to warrant buying a new one.

    Where’s some sort of cheap monthly data plan with AT&T partners for the Touch? I’d love to have connectivity all the time with the Touch. So far the best I can get is 2 free hours a day for being a Starbucks Card holder.

  13. Jack says:

    I’m surprised that I haven’t seen anyone putting these two together, and seeing this as paving the way for VOIP on the touch.

    If that exists and there’s Skype involved, I’m buying one and chucking my cell.

  14. dculberson says:

    Jack, Do you seriously think the iPod touch 16gb had a lot more engineering done versus the iPod touch 8gb? Because those are what I’m comparing. Don’t be intentionally dense. It’s the same device, same engineering, with higher density flash chips in it. There’s *LESS* than an SD card’s difference because there’s no packaging around it. Just a chip. Apple didn’t engineer the flash chip, they picked it out of a line item in a manufacturer’s catalog.

    If you prefer silly analogies, it’s more like I’m comparing baked bread to baked bread with olives in it. If the bread-with-olives was $7 more than bread alone, and the given quantity of olives cost $1.50, wouldn’t you scoff at it?

  15. dculberson says:

    Oh for the love of god, Jack, you are being intentionally dense. They’re charging $70 more for a $5 part.

  16. fotozilla says:

    “Actually the prices dropped by $100…the previous prices were:
    8gb = 299
    16gb = 399
    32gb = 499″

    8gB only dropped $70.00, but who’s counting?

  17. phunkysai says:

    Actually the prices dropped by $100…the previous prices were:
    8gb = 299
    16gb = 399
    32gb = 499

  18. Jack says:

    Can you ease up on the personal attacks. Maybe you should reread what I wrote. Pricing for products in a line where there are multiple options is not always in parity with the profit margins you get from individual sales.

    I think the margins on the higher capacity models are larger than on the lower ones. You see it as morally wrong, and I don’t. Because I see the device as worth the price they are asking for.

    Your logic reminds me of the arguments people made when the iPod Mini came out and the cost per gig were more than the standard iPod. It just doesn’t work that way and never has.

  19. Itsumishi says:

    @Jack and DCULBERSON

    Your silly little argument can be explained with 3 words.

    Supply and Demand.

    Apple will charge $100 more for the 32gb model because that will bring in the highest amount of profit.

    Some people like DC will not purchase it because they feel the price is too high, however Apple predicts this would more than be compensated by the profit margin from those that do buy it.

  20. mappo says:

    So is that it then? A few minor updates to existing products is their idea of a Very Big Deal?

  21. Tommy says:

    I was a little worried because I grabbed an old one free with an iMac purchase. But there’s not a whole lot to the upgrade.

    The hardware volume buttons are nice. The speaker would be nice for games and alarms. But, other than that, there doesn’t seem to be much new.

  22. dculberson says:

    I find it sad that I can buy an 8gb SD card for $25 *retail* but Apple charges $70 for it in the touch. And if you look at just a 16gb card, it’s even worse; you can get those for under $40 retail so the cost difference between 8gb and 16gb is $15, retail. Unless you’re Apple. Then it’s $70.

    Hmmm, a 4.7x retail increase, probably a 1,975,783.8x wholesale markup.

  23. dculberson says:

    Mappo, looks like it. Underwhelming for a “Big Deal.”

  24. mappo says:

    Color me impressed, in your choice of black, purple, blue, green, yellow, orange, red or violet.

  25. aleks says:

    It’s not thinner, it’s thicker. Old iPod touch is 8mm thick while the new one is 8.5mm I have no idea why you and Steve Jobs call that “thinner”.

    The old iPod touch already had a built-in speaker. Did you not notice the sampled typewriter sounds while you typed? Or the email notification alert? The alarm? This speaker could also play game sounds and music (albeit in a low-volume tinny way) if Steve Jobs allowed it. For those who doubt – take apart your first gen touch and attach 2 wires from the headphone jack directly to the built-in speaker and you’ll hear music.

  26. Jack says:


    It’s the same device, same engineering, with higher density flash chips in it.

    Yes, and Apple is asking for more. Did you ever think the pricing is based on the concept of the cost being spread across the line?

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