After hearing about the new software upgrades for iPod touches and iPhones, I knew I had to get one eventually. After some penny-pinching and a few eBay sales, I finally have a touch to call my own.
I’ve only used it for a few weeks, but already I can tell this is going to be a great product that I will be using for a long time.
If you’ve ever used an iPhone, you’ll know how great the touch’s screen is. The glass backed panel feels solid, and the resolution is incredible. Even under bright conditions, the screen is legible, albeit it requires a little more effort to read. The widescreen ratio makes reading the Web enjoyable, and watching movies less of a strain on the eyes. Videos encoded for regular iPod videos are automatically cropped to fill the screen properly. Physically, I’ve noticed that the screen itself doesn’t scratch easily, but when the original plastic film is still on, the scratches become more visible. Alternatively, finger prints don’t really show with the film, but they do on the regular screen.
For me, Wifi is the killer concept that makes the iPod touch worthwhile. I spend much of my day at school sitting in classes, and often have to send a quick email. Wifi on the iPod touch allows me to send and receive messages without pulling out my computer and using the battery. Since the campus is nearly 95% Wifi covered, I can check the internet from almost anywhere. Its use isn’t limited to school, though, as I’ve been able to get onto open WiFi networks nearly everywhere. The only thing I’ve noticed about the iPod is that it can’t establish a connection as far as my laptop, though that should be expected.
The interface on the iPod touch (and iPhone) is truly revolutionary. Thumbing through album artwork with Cover Flow, pinching to zoom a webpage in Safari and flicking through contacts is not only intuitive, but very efficient. The feedback from the keyboard and other elements is also surprisingly effective. After hearing horror stories about learning the keyboard of the iPhone/iPod, I was pleasantly surprised to see how easily text could be entered.
The iPod I purchased was the model from January that has the additional applications like Mail, Maps, Stocks and weather. For owners of earlier editions, the upgrade is $20. I have found that Mail in itself would have been worth the upgrade for me. When I heard that Mail was available for an iPod, I knew I had to have one, as it could save me time when compared to using my MacBook. Having used it heavily in the last few weeks, this has been entirely the case. Instead of pulling out my computer to check and send email, I can pull out my touch and do it from a street corner or library. After integrating it with my Gmail account, the setup works great, and is a viable alternative to hauling a laptop around.
Of course the primary reason that anyone buys an iPod is for organizing and enjoying media, and in this regard, the iPod excels. Using video originally encoded for a video iPod, I easily lasted many commutes by watching TV shows on this little wonder. Movies, pictures and even album covers all look fantastic on the screen, and the battery lasts long enough to get through the latest episode of Heroes. I use the movie function primarily for commuting on the train each day, and in this regard the iPod works wonderfully. I have my iPod set up to transfer unwatched TV shows from my iTunes collection, so whenever I watch a new one, it automatically loads a new episode. The setup works great.
One of the biggest surprises I have found with the iPod touch is its dimensions. It slips into a pocket very easily, and the thickness is really shocking once you get it in your hand. Holding it horizontally may be a little uncomfortable at first, but soon you find a position that is easy on the hands.
The iPod touch is an excellent product that blends brilliant physical design with a revolutionary interface to create an experience that changes the way users browse the internet on the go and handle their media.
Photos from Apple.com
[tags]iPod, iPod touch, OS X, MP3, media player[/tags]