Written by: Chris Andrade
It’s become a yearly tradition. Every September, Apple holds a big even to unveil the newest line-up of iPods. In the months preceding it, internet rumours run rampant about what the next iPod line-up will look like, what they’ll feature and what groundbreaking new technologies will help consumers listen to their favourite music, watch their favourite videos and play their favourite games. Of course, 2009 is no different.
First, let’s get something out of the way. The long awaited Apple tablet apparently WILL NOT be revealed next month. You’ll have to wait until next year (at least) for that. Besides, we’re more concerned with the wonderful little Apple devices that have made it easy and enjoyable for us to bring our music with us. So, on with the rumours and expectations.
It’s thought that a new line-up of the iPod Nano and iPod Touch will be revealed. Unlike the recent flip-flop on Nano designs (remember the short-lived phatty?), this year’s line will apparently be much the same as last year’s except that it will include a camera. I haven’t been able to find any details regarding memory size though. Meanwhile, the Touch will most likely be offered in 16GB, 32GB and 64GB and also feature a camera.
The camera rumour comes from two different “leaks”. The first was the posting of images and video of the new Touch on a blog for the Convino & Rich Show (a Sirus/XM program) sporting a torn down device featuring a camera on the back. Unlike it’s cousin the iPhone, the camera on the Touch appears to be centered at the top/back. The second camera rumour was spawned when a number of third party iPod case manufacturers (mainly Chinese) revealed cases and skins sporting the pinhole camera holes on both iPod Nano and iPod Touch models.
Also, rumours regarding the release of iTunes 9 has been floating around which might include Blu-Ray support, support for other MP3 players, facebook integration and more. The biggest and most exciting speculation is a project nicknamed “Cocktail” where it’s believed that Apple and the major record labels (EMI, Sony, Warner and Universal) are working together to offer full-length album download bundles that go far beyond giving you a PDF of artwork and lyrics when you purchase a whole album rather than single tracks. Of course, the hope is to push people to buy music completely and this initiative may include special apps included with the album. Personally, I think this is a positive thing. Most reputable musicians these days would prefer that you buy their whole album rather than a single. Hopefully, it’ll force the industry (I hate that music is an industry) and musicians will work harder at offering valuable, complete works of art.
Personally, the biggest hope (and almost sure-bet) for me is the introduction of a 64GB iPod Touch. For the hardcore music lover who needs to carry around a virtually entire music library in his/her pocket, this is a winner. Of course, even bigger memory would be absolutely fantastic but we’ll just have to wait for solid state memory prices to come down for a 128GB Touch to be viable price-wise.
One last thing; there was also a rumour that the iPod Classic, although expected to stay with it’s single platter 120GB HDD, will now feature a larger, non-touch 16×10 wide-screen with a smaller click-wheel. Whether there’s any truth to that or not remains to be seen. In any event, we’ll know the full deal come September 9th!