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Media (Apple) Media

Apple Updates iPod 689

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the lookit-the-pretty-colors dept.
TheRaven64 writes "Apple seems to have quietly updated the iPod Photo and iPod Mini lines. The Mini now comes in 4GB and 6GB flavours, priced at $199 and $249 respectively. The iPod Photo now comes in a 30GB flavour for $349 - only $50 more than the 20GB iPod with a mono screen and shorter battery life."
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Apple Updates iPod

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  • Discontinued Lines (Score:5, Interesting)

    by mfkap (230504) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @10:43AM (#11755639)
    Another interesting note is that they only sell the regular iPod in the 20GB flavor now. They got rid of the other sizes. Guess iPod photo for everyone is the plan.
  • Re:I knew it... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Radres (776901) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @10:45AM (#11755657)
    It also makes it worth buying the iPod with a 2-year replacement plan, and then using that to buy the latest model when the battery runs down since you can't replace it yourself...
  • by ites (600337) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @10:45AM (#11755660) Journal
    My main question is: how long before Apple eitehr (a) reintroduce a PDA or (b) morph the iPod into one?

    It would, I believe, take the market from PalmSpringSourceOne but also a large chunk of the consumer Windows PDA market (the business market being firmly Outlocked into place).

  • But... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Ed Avis (5917) <ed@membled.com> on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @10:45AM (#11755664) Homepage
    Before anybody asks: yes, it does run Linux [xlr8yourmac.com].
  • Re:iPod Photo (Score:3, Interesting)

    by thenerd (3254) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @10:50AM (#11755723) Homepage
    But my digital camera can't store 60Gb, so I can't store all my old photos on it.
  • by SilentChris (452960) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @10:52AM (#11755733) Homepage
    Well, you see, it's ridiculously complicated to add a Shuffle feature to the menu. I mean, it would've required rewriting 2 pointers.

    Actually, I was pretty peeved when I bought an iPod, they shipped a new model a month later and didn't think to add this simple hack. And before you say "Just buy another iPod", no. No thank you. This is software.

    A good example of what to do is Blizzard. Every time they release new features its gets updated up and down the board. With the Warcraft 3 Expansion they gave similar functionality to the original game in a patch (without the new units). It wouldn't have killed Apple to do the same.
  • by SkipRosebaugh (50138) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @10:56AM (#11755774) Homepage
    Reuters has a story on this which adds:
    Apple also introduced an iPod Camera Connector for about $30, that lets users link their digital camera to an iPod photo model -- which has a built-in color screen. Users can then transfer snapshots over to the iPod, where they can be viewed.

    Unfortunately, I can't find this item anywhere on Apple's site. Anyone else have any luck?
  • No Ogg Support (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Georges Roux (717743) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @10:56AM (#11755775)
    I prefer a good RIO Karma
  • Re:iPod Photo (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Momoru (837801) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @10:57AM (#11755786) Homepage Journal
    I thought the iPod photo was useless too until now, when they added the functionality to download from your digital camera to it. It's also useful for being able to outsnob the people who own monochrome ipods, as iPod photo has a fancy color display.
  • HQ recording ... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ericandrade (686380) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:00AM (#11755830)
    PDA's do it. [core-sound.com]
    iRiver's do it. [iriveramerica.com]
    iPod's running linux seem to be able to do it. [hackaday.com]

    Stupid hardware crippling! It's pathetic!
  • they saw me coming (Score:3, Interesting)

    by rtphokie (518490) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:02AM (#11755852)
    I just bought a 20Gig monochrome iPod for my wife. I would have gladly paid the extra $50 for better battery life and color
  • by leafsfanatic (621492) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:02AM (#11755854)
    I have been watching iPods for a few generations, waiting for all the features I wanted to hit a certain price point. For $400CAD (with my educational discount) for 30Gb and a colour screen, I couldn't pass it up.
  • by Oculus Habent (562837) * <oculus.habent@gma[ ]com ['il.' in gap]> on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:03AM (#11755862) Journal
    Notice, though, that you can step up through [almost] the entire line by $50 increases...

    512MB Shuffle: $99
    1GB Shuffle: $149
    4GB mini: $199
    6GB mini: $249
    20GB iPod: $299
    30GB Photo: $349
    ** MISSING **
    60GB Photo: $449
  • Archos PMA-400 (Score:4, Interesting)

    by idlake (850372) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:10AM (#11755932)
    Have a look a the Archos PMA 400 [archos.com]. It's a 30M disk-based player with a 320x240 screen, a long battery life, and the ability to record audio and video. It has USB device and master connectivity and WiFi. And it runs Linux and has lots of software available for it. What more do you want?
  • by Ohreally_factor (593551) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:11AM (#11755950) Journal
    I just noticed something.

    The AV cable, which I believe came with the iPod Photo, is now extra. Same deal with the dock.

    The older models came with both a USB 2.0 and a FW cable. The new ones come with only a USB 2.0 cable.

    On the plus side, Apple is clearing out the old stock. Check the "Special Deals" page. 40 GB and 60 GB with

    Apple Earphones
    AC Adapter
    FireWire cable
    USB 2.0 cable
    iPod photo AV cable
    iPod photo Dock
    Carrying Case

    $379 and $479 respectively.
  • Mini downgrades (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Folmer (827037) * on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:12AM (#11755957)
    While Its great that they have set the price down for the mini, they have cut the firewire cable, and the power adaptor at the same time, leaving apple users with older computers stuck with their USB 1.1 connectors...
    I guess that they are really looking to get into the windows users' pockets instead of the Zen micro... Its 19 for the firewire cable, and 29 for the power apadtor, so price cut isn't really a pricecut..
    For thoose who have USB2 and take their laptop everywhere its a bargain after all..

    more interesting is the camera connector:
    The new iPod Camera Connector is an optional accessory that enables customers to connect their digital camera to iPod photo and import their photos into the iPod. By simply connecting the iPod Camera Connector and a digital camera*, customers can easily transfer digital images to their iPod photo, providing tremendous storage space so they can take more pictures. Imported photos are immediately viewable on iPod photo's crisp color screen, and can also be brought back to iPhoto(R) on the Mac or various photo applications on the PC. The iPod Camera Connector is expected to be available in late March for $29.
  • Re:No Ogg Support (Score:2, Interesting)

    by cens0r (655208) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:12AM (#11755962) Homepage
    I too would prefer the rio karma... except it has no FM tuner. That's a killer feature to me.

    Here is the list of features I need:
    • FM Radio
    • 5gig (if it only plays MP3 or Vorbis)
    • 20gig (if it plays flac)
    • A remote (optional is acceptable, but included is preferebale)
    • The ability to work with linux (mounts as a removeable disk prefered)
    • FM tuner

    Here are the features I would like but don't need:
    • Ability to play FLAC
    • Works with a Mac
    • Can be used as removeable storage for files
    • Replaceable battery

    The iRiver iHP-120 seemed like the perfect player for me, but they had to discontinue it. The rio karma is close, but I NEED the FM tuner. Right now I have my choices limited to the Nomad Zen Micro and the iAudio M3. I'm leaning towards the iAudio as it has all the needed features, and does very well on the desired features. The micro seems like a great player, but linux support is kind of a hack (and you need windows to update the firmware). Plus by the time you buy the remote, you've spent more than you would on the iAudio.

    The only thing holding me back is that I don't know anyone with an iAudio player.
  • Re:iPod Photo (Score:3, Interesting)

    by shaper (88544) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:13AM (#11755971) Homepage

    I still have no idea what the purpose of the iPod Photo is. Sure, the better battery life and color screen are nice, but who really cares about carrying their photos around with them for viewing on a 1.5-inch screen?

    Very convenient presentation tool. Just google "iPod photo presentation". The top two links in the search results pretty much sum it up:

    HOW-TO: Put PowerPoint on your iPod Photo [engadget.com]
    ZappTek's presentation-to-iPod photo software [engadget.com]

  • Re:I knew it... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by badasscat (563442) <`basscadet75' `at' `yahoo.com'> on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:13AM (#11755975)
    ... my continued holding out for one of these guys is paying off. $350 for the 30 GB iPod Photo is not a bad deal.

    Not bad but not as good as it looks either. Note that no iPod comes with the dock any longer, and the iPod photos do not come with a firewire cable either (the older 4G iPods came with both firewire and USB 2.0 - the 20GB still does).

    Probably not a big deal for a lot of people, but not having a dock myself I can tell you I wish I did, and as I have not yet been able to get my iPod working reliably with USB 2.0, it's nice to have both cables. (Plus it means I can leave one connected to my PC at all times, then bring my USB cable with me wherever I go and use the iPod as a portable hard drive.)

    Apple would charge something like $70 for the firewire cable and dock separately, so you're not really getting that much (if any) value over the old 40GB iPod photo when you also factor in the smaller capacity.

    I also sort of lament the fact that with each new revision, the iPod becomes less of a luxury product and more of a commodity... but that's inevitable, I guess.
  • by XMyth (266414) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:14AM (#11755976) Homepage
    If you don't mind waiting a while, the eMarketResearchGroup free iPod offer works. I got mine (after a few months, but that's because ColumbiaHouse took a long time to verify).

    Got a 40gig 4th Gen iPod. Total cost was ~$70.
  • by tetranz (446973) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:15AM (#11755988)
    Looks pretty good. [soniqcast.com]
  • Re:ipod mini.. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by hey! (33014) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:16AM (#11756001) Homepage Journal
    The difference is beween "cool" and "hip".

    The iPod is still cool, but it's too popular to to be hip any more.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:17AM (#11756013)
    What is Slashdot now, a billboard for Apple?

    Creative Labs or iRiver puts out a new product, it doesn't even get mentioned. Apple rehashes one of their shittiest players, and introduces something hardly revolutionary for an extremely inflated price, and it makes the front page.

    I don't understand.
  • by ianscot (591483) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:32AM (#11756203)
    Personally I'm thinking about the new 30 gig model. It's getting toward that "sweet spot" you hear so much about, and it wasn't there before at all.

    I have a Sony digital camera, just an old 3.2 MP model. On my annual 2-week vacation with the kids to our CO cabin, the pictures still pile up at that file size. Sony's proprietary memory format (did I mention this was Sony?) means memory sticks are pricier than flash memory, and while I have a few I'm not really wanting to load up on them any more, especially because I'd like to switch to a Digital Rebel sometime here.

    Personally I don't want to lug my laptop on vacation. That's a leash and something else to worry about packing well. The new 30 GB with a direct camera-to-iPod cable would let me dump photos without the to-laptop (and later to-home-box) deal. Along the way I could hook the little thing up to my relations' TVs and show them whatever little set of images I wanted, mostly of shots from home they haven't seen.

    For me the high-res monitor seems a little much, that's mostly redundant to the camera, yep. But as a little utility added to my regular iPod, this makes a lot of sense the way Apple did it up. I have a 10 GB iPod, 3rd generation, right now, and it's not pushed for space, so I think the 30 GB model would take my books on tape (for the long drive) and music along with whatever photos I decided to keep, no problem.

    So there you go. Maybe I'm the market. And I didn't consider it before, either; I'm betting the price difference was a killer for sales, at first.

  • No More 40GB iPod? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by StarWreck (695075) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:33AM (#11756217) Homepage Journal
    Only the 20GB regular iPod remains, does this mean they're phasing out the regular iPod?
  • by wildwood (153376) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:37AM (#11756254)
    Notice, though, that you can step up through [almost] the entire line by $50 increases...

    ...and the line's pricing stops just shy of the Mac Mini's base price, too.

    It's getting to the point where, no matter how much money you have, you can buy a complete product from Apple. And the amount of money you have determines which product you buy, too - no pricing collisions, just a steady progression where customers can self-select their position on the Apple pricing ladder...
  • by bach37 (602070) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:40AM (#11756286)
    Any Sony Mini Disc owners out there? I'm possibly looking to buy one of those. The high capacity discs (1GB I think) are impressive, not to mention being able to record concerts/rehearsals if you are a musician. Seems like a good alternative music player (at ~$250 [sonystyle.com]) that never comes up in the Dell vs. Creative vs. Apple mp3 player discussions.
  • by seven of five (578993) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:44AM (#11756344) Homepage
    ipod photo looks like a niche item. An artist remarked that she can put her whole portfolio on the thing and whip it out for an impromptu show. She can do the same thing with a website but it's less portable. People who are into digital photography bigtime would like one, too. But the ipod photo is an odd combination.... I guess they just had the parts laying around and figured they could offset the minor development costs with relatively few sales. (??)
  • by American AC in Paris (230456) * on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:45AM (#11756353) Homepage
    I'm probably in the minority here but I think that the iPod photo is overkill.

    Heck, the classic iPod is overkill, too. That overkill is what makes it such a great little device. Think about it--when the original iPod came out, more than a few people were saying "who in their right mind pays several hundred dollars for a glorified Walkman?"

    Thing is, though, the iPod really re-introduced us to portable music. Yeah, there were other high-capacity players on the market first, but it was the iPod that really got the ball rolling. Looking back, I'm struck by how non-portable 'portable' music used to be. Now, I have my entire music library with me wherever I go--and I take it for granted that I don't need to lug a bigass CD folder and swap disks to get the music I want. It seems like a small difference, but the net effect is quite significant. With just a slight reduction in the overall space and inconvenience of listening to music on the go, I've found that I'm listening to a whole lot more music--and really enjoying it.

    The iPod Photo may just end up doing much the same thing for photographs (and, in another few years, movies.) Right now, my photographs are split between "old" photos in boxes and bulky albums, and "new" photos on a comparatively small laptop. The laptop is nice, but it's still significantly more of a pain to carry with me than an iPod.

    It isn't that much of a leap of the imagination to see the iPod Photo doing the same thing for your photo albums as the iPod did for your CD collection. Going to grandma's? Load up the baby pictures on the same miniscule device as the driving music (and 'Bananaphone' to keep Junior happy). Plug it into her TV, and you've got an instant, large-format slideshow that grandma doesn't need to squint at through her reading glasses. Got a slideshow to go along with your thesis presentation? Don't bother with the laptop, just bring your iPod. Hell, just wanna show your friends that fish you caught on vacation? It's already on your iPod, which you'll have on you for the drive, anyhow!

    Sure, it's easy to say that it's "overkill"--but then again, so much about the iPod is already overkill. A CD player is perfectly adequate for playing music on the go, after all. What makes the iPod so successful, though, is that this "overkill" is just enough to make a pretty radical change in one's music listening habits. Jobs is betting that it can do the same with your photo viewing habits--and to be honest, he may be right. Luckily for him, even if he's dead wrong, it's still the same awesome music player it has always been--and the added photo functionality isn't likely to turn many people off...

  • by ShadowDawn (450549) <<xao> <at> <thinkunix.com>> on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:47AM (#11756380) Homepage
    It worked on me...

    My wife keeps stealing my iPod Mini (4GB) when she goes to the gym, so I said I was going to buy her one.

    She said she would be happy with the iPod Shuffle at $99, I told her we would get least the $149 1GB version.

    Now with this announcement, I will just go ahead and get her a iPod Mini (4GB) @ $199, since she loves mine so much.

    So, Apple got another $100 out us! :)

    I think Apple is doing a lot of things right lately and I'm about to jump into the Mini Mac wagon once my bonus check comes next month.

    If I really like it, I see a PowerMac in my future next year. I will have to give it a long evaluation, since I have used PeeCee's for many years, I want to give them a honest evaluation before judgement. I am a UNIX gearhead though, so I think I'm going to love the new Macs.
  • by chia_monkey (593501) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @12:28PM (#11756854) Journal
    Genius I tell ya. How many people will will go "well hell, for just $50 more I can get the..." or kids adding $50 to the money their parents are putting down to get the next level up?

    Genius.
  • by AaronStJ (182845) <AaronStJ AT gmail DOT com> on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @12:49PM (#11757094) Homepage
    I finally got around to ordering my iPod, and I get this in my inbox:
    Thank you for your recent iPod order.

    Apple is pleased to inform you that we have reduced the price of your iPod!

    Bwah? They changed the price of the iPod? But the 40 gig iPod cost $399. That's just how it is.

    So I head over to store.apple.com. What else have they changed? iPod photo? 60gb?! Only $449! Sign me up!

    So for only $50 more than I'd expected to pay, I get 20 extra GB, and a color screen.

    Apple is my new favorite company.

    Off topic, does anyone know where the Apple call center is? Cute accent...
  • by amichalo (132545) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @12:51PM (#11757121)
    Macobserver [macobserver.com] quoted the following:

    For the third quarter of 2004, the iPod accounted for 92.1% of the market for hard drive-based music players, according to the NPD Group, up from 82.2% a year ago. Players from Creative Technology and Rio were a distant second and third, with 3.7% and 3.2% of the market, respectively. Market share numbers for the fourth quarter have yet to be released.

    So for hard drive players (~60% of the portable digital music player market) that is:
    - 92.1% Apple iPod (all non-shuffle varieties)
    - 3.7% Creative (all HD models)
    - 3.2% Rio (all HD models)
    - 1% Other HD players

    This is a breathtaking dominance of the market space that serves as an indicator for the related on-line music purchase/subscription market. If 7.9% of the hard drive players are non-Apple, and we assume the larger capacity HD player market space is where the most volume from these services is coming from, then that is a small piece of pie for all the players (Napster, Buy, Wal-mart, others?) to carve up into a successful and sustainable (profitable) business.

    Further, Apple's iPod Shuffle is targeting the remaining ~40% flash-based player market. Even if the Shuffle is 50% as effective in market penetration as big brother iPod is, that would leave Apple with a (wildly) estimated ~45% of the flash player market. So again, competition would be nosing for larger nibbles, instead of the crumbs of the HD market, but still a far smaller pie to distribute.

    All this points (for me anyway) to an impending consolidation of WMA related service offerings. Specifically, I would look for Napster to end it's offerings after Wallstreet destorys an already paltry stock for the failure of a $30M campaign against iTunes Music Store with the "Do the Math" campaign. Also, I would look for Buy.com to further phase out their download music store in favor of higher margin CD sales as they find even offering $0.79 selected tracks isn't creating market traction. The "hope" for WMA may be in Wal-Mart - the icon of the price elastic shopper - who may prefer $0.89 downloads (and $189 players) to Apple's $0.99, $199 combinatons.
  • Re:So... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by mobby_6kl (668092) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @01:21PM (#11757478)
    > Sort of, except that Apple makes trendsetting hardware and many geeks do care about what apple is elling even if they eventually choose to buy something else.

    That's why they should be reminded on the front page, so they remember to buy it from Apple. That's the defenition of an advertisment.

    If ppl are so interested in Apple's crap, why don't they just look at their website? This is as stupid as those "IE Bug discovered" each time there is a new one, /. isn't bugtraq!
  • by Durandal64 (658649) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @02:49PM (#11758474)
    Only if the word "different" is intended to be used as an adverb. Ever been describing an idea and say, for example, "Think 'The Olsen Twins on acid'"? Apple could be using "different" as a broad description of their entire design philosophy.
  • New Software (Score:2, Interesting)

    by R.Mo_Robert (737913) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @05:21PM (#11760128)

    Anyone notice on the side of the iPod page it says:

    Get the most out of your iPod photo. Coming in March, new software lets you:

    • Choose new slideshow transitions on the go
    • Upload photos directly from your camera using the optional iPod Camera Connector accessory, also arriving in March

    I *would* say it's an indication of an iPhoto-like app for the PC, but it made no mention of being Windows- or Mac-specific, so maybe it's just some other program or iTunes enhancement that would be more appropriate for managing photos on an iPod photo.

  • Re:Yawn... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by amichalo (132545) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @05:52PM (#11760472)
    ...with 92.1% of the hard drive player market according to recent reports.
  • Re:So... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by jayratch (568850) <slashdot&jayratch,com> on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @06:56PM (#11761015) Homepage Journal
    News for nerds. Stuff that matters.

    For instance, to the nerd who has been holding off on a music player purchase, the notion of a better deal on ipod (in the case of the color or mini models or the defunct 40gig) is stuff that matters.

    Of course it would be better if the headline read (on say, January 23) "Apple to release new ipods in four weeks" but this is useful too.

    One man's advertisement is another man's consumer education.

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