Apple’s new line-up

What’s Apple got in store for you this year? Come take a look at the new generation of i-stuff.

Today’s announcement of Apple products was purported to be big. So big that they were telling reporters, tech journalists, and any press within earshot of San Francisco that it was going to be big so they should be there.

And Steve Jobs was there with some new product… updates.

There’s the new iPod Nano which has grown since you last saw it. Instead of being able to find the small pocket-sized Nano which we reviewed last year, there’s now a taller iPod Nano that looks a lot like the old iPod Nano but with a widescreen so you can watch your videos in a larger (while still smaller) definition. There are more features like a shake feature – something Sony phones have had for a fair bit now – and the accelerometer like from the MacBooks and iPhones so you can rotate the device for viewing angle.

Oh and there’s lots of new colours and more space. Apple Australia are listing the 8GB for $199 and the 16GB for $249 effectively doubling the space but not the cost from the past models.

Tough luck if you just bought an iPod Nano a few days ago, I guess.

Then there’s the new iPod Touch which is now more like an iPhone than ever! Actually, it’s got some new toys which will make your shiny white or glossy black beauty envious of its new sibling.

First of all, the iPod Touch has lost weight and looks sleeker than ever. More like a model, the tall and slender audio baby now also features the Nike+ receiver built directly into it so you can go running and bust the millimetres just like the Touch has. A new firmware also graces the Touch giving it more AppStore power and positioning Apple with what is essentially a foothold in the portable gaming business.

Also introduced in this big event is a new version of iTunes bringing us up to version 8, new colours for the iPod Shuffle (though nothing else has changed about it), firmware version 2.1 for the iPhone that fixes bugs & battery life Apple are saying (not the first time I’ve heard that), and some new headphones.

Yes, you might not believe it but the Apple headphones which come packaged with all of the iPod devices just aren’t that good. Sure, they fit well and sound ok, but they’re not doing your ears much good. Plus, who wants to buy new headphones when they come for free?

Apple’s iPod earbuds haven’t been doing too well, however, in the eyes of many reviewers. A lot of us find they don’t fit very well and if you plug a decent or semi-decent-but-cheap pair of earbuds, canalphones, or headphones in, you find that the volume needed to be sent out of the iPod is around that of half compared to what’s needed with Apple’s celebrated white earbuds.

So to rectify this, Apple have taken the time to launch a new in-earbud that features both a woofer and a tweeter for better sound. There’s also more control on the side and what looks like an inbuilt microphone which might make people looking for a better iPhone headset happy except for one interesting flaw: look around on the Apple Australia site and you’ll find that the iPhone isn’t listed for use with this device.

I don’t doubt that it’ll work but I do find it a bit odd that Apple don’t have it listed as working in an iPhone capacity. Maybe there’s something else we should be buying?

And that’s it from Apple. No new MacBook or MacBook Pro laptops. No touchscreen Tablet Macs. Just iPod, iPhone, and iTunes madness.

Written by Leigh D. Stark