iPod Nano chromatic - newly released

By | 10:55 AM 5 comments
So Apple has released its new version of the iPod - the Nano chromatic. Its a much bigger step than previous ipod updates. This one seems to go closer to the iTouch than the others. Some of the great features you'll see on this one are:

1. The great vertical form:
Ok here's the first best feature. I just loved the vertical fom factor of the ipod nano. Then Apple removed it for some reason. I searched and searched for even a second hand vertical form factor ipod but they had already stopped production. Thankfully they've re-introduced it. Its way better than the rediculous square. Dont change it again guys ....

2. Large bright screen:
I think Zune made a big point here that everyone likes a big screen even if its on a small mp3 player. So iPod has a large bright screen which is always nice to have. Way to go on this one!!

3. Motion sensor:
iPod Nano now has the motion (also called orientation) sensor that made iPhone cool. So if you tilt the nano the album art basically flips and gives you a different way to see your music or the video. This is especially good because most videos use the wide aspect ratio that wont fit on a slim vertical screen. So this is also a good point on the nano.

4. Genuis feature:
Ok here's another really great feature. If you're listening to a song and you want to listen to similar songs, just press and hold the middle button and select the genius feature. Basically it creates a list of songs that are similar to the one you're hearing. Isnt that cool ... I'd probably buy the nano for just this feature.

5. Shake to shuffle:
This one first came out on Phillips and Sony. If you want to change songs you basically just shake the device and it shuffles to the next song.  I wonder how people will find this useful cause the iPod is mostly inside your pocket or your bag. I wonder if you have to start jumping to change songs ;)

6. Album art:
This is something Apple's been harping about since iTunes was launched. You get to see album art when you scroll through songs. Works on the flipped horizontal mode. I wonder if US listeners like to see album art cause really ... I dont think Indians care. But if you do want to see it then this device allows you to. Now this is one of those hidden incentives to buy original music cause pirated songs wont have album art. So you're kind of "trained" to want to see album art and so you'll move closer to buying songs. With iTunes store well integrated, you can easily buy songs. I guess its a great way for Apple to make some money with songs as well.

7. Ways to browse music:
A little enhancement here is a new way to browse music. You can press and hold the center button and Browse by Album, which shows you other songs in this album, and Browse by Artist, which shows you other songs by this artist. Creative Inc. has these features on their mp3 player but not in this easy-to-access-mode. I guess Apple has basically turned the menu to start from the current song, which might be good.

8. Smooth curved edges:
If you thought the nano already has curved edges, its gotten more tapery. Basically I think this is a great idea to help you slide it into bags, pockets, and whereever else you put your ipod. Im not a big fan of this design though, like the proper candy bar style better. 

There are still a few unanswered questions:

1. Does album art stay on always when the iPod is playing draining the battery?
I found this problem with the creative. It is super irritating especially when you put any podcasts on it. You have to play it like a video and it has this still image always on and draining out the battery. Yeah i know it has a big battery life but i dont believe in wasting !

2. What formats does it support?
Are we still stuck with "limited" options or can we play everything, like the creative.

3. How sensitive is the shake to shuffle feature?
Does it mean every pot hole will change the song .... i hope not. Otherwise there better be an option to turn it off. Dont want to be cursing the ipod at every road trip.

4. Why do we need 8 gb !!!
This is something i have yet to understand. Does Apple think we dont have access to computers for days? I need 2 GB but i need something cheap. If you're going to raise the cost by $100 for super expensive memory chips, then you're just making it more difficult for me to buy this thing.

Well, here's something on the strategy front. I think Apple has done a great job as usual. They've noticed that a few innovations have come along since the touch wheel (even by other players). So this kind of made it clear that this clearly is a battle Apple is ready to fight. It picked the better innovations and put them all in one place. Is this supposed to push the market to the iTouch? I dont think so. This is a different market that values size over everything. We like the occasional video and picture but its mainly about music that fits in the pocket. Here's a really great video thats on youtube explaining the features. Do check it out.


Update: Its already available in India - just checked it on eBay - starting at Rs. 8,190 (in US you get it for $125 - Rs. 5,700). So if you know anyone coming from US, then you know what to ask for ;)


Kartik said...

Apple doesn't keep anything cheap. They just keep doubling the memory and make you pay the same price! Looks like they don't care about third world countries!!

Karthik Prasad said...

Hehe .. yeah thats true. I guess they're still sitting on milking the top of the pyramid. When they get some serious competitors, they'll think about value ..

BP said...

Looks like we have to pay for creativity and to FIRST to launch products. 'Motion sensor' and 'Genuis feature' seems real cool, when will we get to see it in Indian markets? and how much Rs??

Udayan Dasgupta said...

did you go to iimL ??? one of you earlier posts mentions graduating from L ... so guessing ...

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