Apple announced 3 new iPods this week, and all 3 have serious flaws in their design, functionality, or both. Today we are going to examine why you should skip out on all 3 iPods this year.
Let’s take it from largest to smallest:
1. The new Apple iPod Touch. Fatal flaw: Completely worthless rear camera that takes low-resolution pictures that are the same resolution as its retina display. Any pics you take probably look ok on the Touch’s own screen, but nowhere else. Forget replacing your pocket digicam with this thing, the sub-megapixel pictures will look like dogshit on anything other than the iPod Touch itself. Even the video it records (if it is truly 720p) is higher resolution than the still pictures it takes – proving this camera is probably gimped via software. Stupid. Good thing you got that iPhone 4 instead, right?
2. The new Apple iPod Nano. Fatal flaw: The vertical resolution has been chopped off at the knees (thanks to the new square design) and is too low to usefully scroll through your music. The cramped screen size will be the bane of large fingers, and even if you are blessed with elf fingers, scrolling to find that song in the middle of your collection will prove to be frustrating beyond your years. Imagine scrolling through a list of 1000 songs with 3 of them visible at any given moment. No amount of cool-looking clock faces can save this exercise in frustration. It’s like using a giant mouse on a small mousepad. No fun. Nevermind the fact that this year’s model has no camera, no video playback, no voice recording, etc. Taking away features and adding frustration? No thanks.
3. The new Apple iPod Shuffle. Fatal flaw: You can’t use the rear clip without hitting the buttons on face of the Shuffle. You better clip first, then pick your music/volume second, because if you do it in the reverse order you probably are going to get pissed off. The previous generation Shuffle was a no-button Jony Ive stoke-off joke straight out of The Onion, with the generation before that being just right (it had space to grip and clip without inadvertently hitting buttons!). But I suppose it wouldn’t be “innovation” if they just took two steps back, so they got rid of the extra (read, “useful for gripping”) space and instead decided to frustrate us slightly less than the last generation. Thanks Steve!
Apple needs to realize that they don’t necessarily have to design for the sake of designing. After all, these products are supposed to enhance our lives, not complicate them. Too much form over function is the folie of lesser companies… Not Apple. Right? Well this year, not so much…