On September 9th, Steve Jobs presented to the press, in the frame of the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco (behind the legendary Moscone Center where the Macworld takes place every year), the new i Needless to say, the event, which was attended by the people of all the world, was even discussed in newspapers, magazines and television: when Jobs comes up on stage to present something new, it is now so, the eyes of the world are on him. And expectations are popping up at a thousand! But what could be expected from what was already the title of the event, Let’s Rock, was clearly a normal range update? After seven years from the first model, Apple can still invent with iPods? Nothing revolutionary, it is clear, but beware: the new features of the new range are not few and are not even insignificant. Let’s look at them model by model.

iPod nano

The most important innovations of the new iPod nano range are first design, or rather the form factor that seems to start from that of two generations ago, and doubling at the same price of memory capacity. The new iPod nano has 8 and 16 GB of flash memory and a price of 139 and 189 euros respectively. Multipliing the two catalog models for the new and flaming nine colors • silver, black, purple, blue, green, yellow, orange, red and pink • the result is eighteen new iPod nano For the new design, the Apple team led by Jonathan Ive seems to have made a back-of-the-box carambola of two generations completely abandoning the’square’ shape of the third generation (the current is the fourth, 4G) to resume the one Compared to the latter, the section of the body is much thinner on the sides but the design and the construction principle are basically the same: the body is again an extruded aluminium like that of the second generation nano. The new design makes this iPod nano a real feather weight: with its 37 grams you forget to have it in your pocket. The vertical orientation is misleading, but the size and resolution of the new nano display is exactly the same as the previous range: 320 x 240 pixels at 204 ppi. From this point of view, therefore, no news. The screen is now protected by a glossy glass, which is considerably rounded on the sides to follow the tapered profile of the body: it is easy to create some reflections when switched off, but in the use this does not cause any particular discomfort in the vision; the display is

To adapt to the vertical orientation of the screen the graphical interface required some adaptations. The previews of the contents of each menu • covers, photos etc. • are no longer left but run horizontally down: the images are small but the effect is perhaps even more elegant.

The new interface design offers more space to both the length of the writings and the number of items that can be viewed without scrolls: the Settings window, for example, shows all nine entries it contains at a glance. The space gained then allowed Apple to make the magnifying option of the menu fonts even more effective: characters can now be larger to the benefit of readability. The Click Wheel, the clickable ring, is also slightly more generous than the previous range.

The news about the menus is not limited to their graphic appearance: there is another one that is even more important because it can really open the doors of the use of the menu even to people with poor, if not even null, visual abilities. We are talking about the brand new voice playback feature that concerns not only menus but even the titles of songs, videos, podcasts and everything that is contained in the menu. The idea is brilliant but the result, at least for languages other than Anglo-Saxon, has not been fully successful since it is based on the ability to play the computer’s voice: Italian words are then spoken in English. Linked to the choice of vertical arrangement of the screen is the introduction of the integrated accelerometer which, as in the iPhone and iPod touch, allows to orient what is displayed on the display of the iPod nano to its position As with its famous… major brothers… even in the case of the nano-l… the accelerometer does not have only this function, but acts as a real input device that allows the user to interact with the small player. From the main screen or from any menu item Music, you just have to rotate the iPod to automatically switch to the now unmistakable view Cover Flow with the covers of the albums that can be flipped in tip of the dial. But the accelerometer is not limited to this: it can also be exploited by the new games for iPod nano like the fun Maze, new entry in the standard endowment of the new dwarfs (the other two are the already known Klondike and Vortex

Another’s funny’ new iPod nano is the random jump function of the tracks that is activated by shaking the player vigorously. Another new feature of the new iPod nano is the recording function directly enabled by the minijack socket of the earphones.The voice memo function in the new nano is now also activated by connecting a pair of earphones equipped with microphones that must be purchased separately: The most expensive model (79 euros, Apple Store price) uses in-ear earphones, i.e. those that fit inside the auditory tube, while the other one is based on standard normal earphones (the price is aligned with Apple earphones without microphone The new dwarf’s features are not exhausted here. On the software front, for example, a novelty is directly borrowed from the new iTunes 8: it is called Genius and it is a function that allows the creation of \”smart playlists automatically starting from a song, an album or The user can use the function very easily: one can choose a song and Genius proposes another twenty-five homogeneous ones for music type, atmosphere etc. (the algorithm is based on information also downloaded from the iTunes Store servers).

iPod Classic

The famous phrase →in medio stat virtus → seems to have inspired Apple in choosing the memory size of the new iPod classic: from the previous models with 80 and 160 GB hard disk, in fact, you switch to The virtue is in the middle, exactly. But, and fortunately, this does not apply to the price that falls below the less large model of the previous range: the new iPod classic 120 GB costs 219 euros (20 euros less than the 80 GB); an interesting price compared to a The design of the new model has nothing different than the previous one. Identical are the shapes, finishes, and even the dimensions: 6, 18 cm of base, 10.35 cm of height, 1.05 cm of thickness, the same as the 80 GB model (the most large hard disk therefore did not affect the thickness No news in the colours (in Cupertino they have all played them with the new nano): satin grey and matt black are in fact the two finishes in which this classic is also available. The bottom remains always chromed (and here would have been a sacrilege to do otherwise) while everything else is there where it was: clickable ring, jack entry, lock key etc.

New things are not wasted even inside: neither in hardware nor software features. The new classic, for the first time in the history of iPod genealogy, is positioned behind the nano for many features (normally it was the nano to be a sort of version of the classic … Light, for size but also for

Almost all the new features of the nano Plus are not present in the classic. There is no accelerometer, for example, and this makes incompatible games that exploit it as the aforementioned Maze (in the stock there are the same titles as the previous series: iQuiz, Vortex and Klondike), and consequently is absent Even vocal menus, which we have seen to be an interesting novelty of the nano despite lack of support for our language, there is no trace: Apple here decided not to implement them.

The only real software innovation, in addition to the enhancement of the search functions for song and album and a reorganization of the menus, is the Genius function for the creation of intelligent playlists: it works exactly like in the nano. The classic was also introduced to the recording function by the minijack of the earphones.

Despite the few new features, the classic menu remains an interesting product: it offers, as we said, a memory capacity that to date… and probably still for a while… is not even comparable to that of the other variations of Apple’s player For those who have, and always want to have, a vast collection of music, videos, podcasts and photographs, the classic menu is the only alternative.

iPod touch

Three models in the iPod touch family with the same memory equipment: 8, 16 and 32 GB. What changes is the price. The 8 GB model now costs 219 euros (compared to 279 euros in the previous range), the middle 279 euros (it was 369) and the 32 GB 379 euros (it was 459 euros before).

The new design introduces some elements not only aesthetic but also substantial. The first detail that jumps immediately to the eye is the pair of pulsants for the control of the volume on the right side of the device: an unforgivable lack of the previous model that, as a music player, was uncomfortable in the situations

Another criticism that was made at the touch compared to the iPhone was that it didn’t have an integrated speaker. It is true that the speaker of the iPhone cannot be animated a All things obviously impossible for the iPod touch, at least until yesterday.

The new touch now the internal speaker has it, even if you can’t see it: the speaker is in fact completely embedded in the body of the device and it seems that the same body is the acoustic case. As a design exercise this solution is impeccable. But the result cannot be said: the sound that comes out of the new touch is weak and a little confused.

Despite this, the integrated speaker does its function anyway: you can now enjoy some small video clips, spin the games and use the iPod touch as an alarm clock. Even in the design of the body the new iPod touch seems to be inspired by the iPhone taking the line visibly thinned to the edges. The back shell is always chrome-plated and the reflections are now even more intriguing thanks to the flared shape of the section. Chromed and rounded is now also the profile that runs around the display and the entire front surface: the effect is very iPhone.

An interesting hardware novelty concerns the integrated support for the Nike + iPod sensor to be inserted into the special line of footing shoes. The new touch not only becomes compatible with the Nike accessory but even has the integrated antenna (a Blutooth declination not usable for other purposes) and does not require the accessory to be connected to the Dock included in the Nike + i package.

As for basic software features, the new iPod touch offers all the features introduced with version 2.1 of the operating system: these are the same things that you can have by updating the previous model (this is the advantage of a platform like l’iPho

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