It was the device no one expected Apple to launch. After all, the iPod range had been seemingly forgotten for a while with the role of portable media player having been taken over by the likes of the iPhone and iPad. Most people were therefore surprised when Apple announced a new edition of the iPod touch, its veteran portable media player. No, it is not a radical makeover of the device that everyone called “the iPhone without a phone” and it still does not have mobile network connectivity (you will have to rely on Wi-Fi), but it is still an interesting and (importantly) relatively affordable addition to the Apple portfolio. Here are eight things that we think are worth noting about the new iPod touch:
Same design – super compact and colourful but with big bezels
If you thought that Apple was going to revamp the design of the iPod touch, you will be disappointed. Yes, it remains a very good looking device, but it looks right from another era with its relatively small 4.0-inch display and large bezels. Yes, there is colour aplenty (space grey, gold, silver, pink, blue and red), but the design is pretty much the same as the previous iPod touch, with a large home button beneath the display, A power/unlock button on the top, and volume keys on the left, and a camera with a flash in the top left corner on the back, with a rather odd black capsule shaped enclosure on the top right corner. At 6.1 mm, it is super slim and at 88 grammes, insanely light. It looks good if you liked the earlier design of the iPad touch, or want a device that can be used easily with one hand, but unlike its predecessors which could be mistaken for a new iPhone, this one cannot.
Retina display, but not even HD
Yes, we love the super compact form factor of the iPod touch, but we really wish that Apple had made the display HD at least. Yes, it is a Retina display with a 326 ppi pixel density, but a resolution of 1164 x 640 is definitely a bit out of this day and age when one gets full HD+ display We have to confess that we were a little disappointed to see that the
New chip for better gaming, AR
Perhaps the biggest change in the new iPod touch is the presence of a A10 processor. The A10 Fusion chip is not the fastest or the latest in the Apple stable (the latest iPhones run on the A12 Bionic), but it is the same that is seen on the basic iPad model. Which means while it is not AS fast as the new iPads and iPhones, it is definitely fast enough to handle all games and apps, and also with better support for Augmented Reality (AR). And yes, it supports Apple Arcade, Apple’s new gaming service coming later this year. Think of it as an iPhone 7. Without the phone of course!
Same old cameras
But if the processor is new, the cameras on the iPod touch are rather disappointingly rather similar to the ones in older generations. We have an 8.0-megapixel rear camera with f/2.4 aperture. Yes, there is support for full HD videos and slow motion, but there is no OIS. The front facing camera is a very basic 1.2-megapixel snapper meant more for FaceTime calls rather than selfies. Honestly, we are disappointed.
But no fingerprint scanner or face unlock (but a 3.5 mm audio jack is there)
There is also no fingerprint scanner or Face Unlock on the device. Which is again a little disappointing when you consider that this is 2019 and this is also basically a handheld computer which will contain a lot of personal data, and not just music and videos (and hey, even music and videos deserve protection). There is a 3.5 mm audio jack though, so music lovers can stick to their wired headphones (although the device does have Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity).
Terrific battery life, and plenty of storage too.
What also has not changed fortunately is the great battery life of the iPod touch. We have been promised 40 hours of music or eight hours of videos on a single charge. And there’s plenty of space to keep those videos and music too – the iPod touch is available in 32 GB, 128 GB and 256 GB variants. Basically, even if you are into heavy duty gaming and the like, this is a device that should see you through a few days on a single charge.
Dat OS, those apps
We left one of the best parts of the device for the last. The new iPod touch comes with the same software that you see on the latest iPhones and iPads – iOS 12. It runs very smoothly indeed, and is also one of the most secure OSes around. What’s more, given Apple’s excellent record, you can be assured that the device will receive software updates for a few years. Of course, it also means that you get access to the iOS App Store with thousands of high quality applications, allowing you to do more on your device, from playing games to editing videos to just surfing the Internet or checking social networks and the like.
The most affordable iOS device
The iPod touch starts at Rs 18,900 for the 32 GB variant, Rs 25,900 for the 128 GB variant, and Rs 38,900 for the 256 GB one. That makes it the most affordable new iOS device in tech town, and a great option for anyone who wants the iOS experience without shelling out the sort of bucks a new iPhone or iPad needs. Is it worth it? Stay tuned for our review. But yes, we are so glad to see an iPod back in the market.