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Apple's next-gen iPod nano takes its lumps as current models run dry

post #1 of 104
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It isn't even available yet, but Apple's likely successor to the iPod nano has been dubbed the red-headed (and overweight) stepchild of the lineup by the online media.

A recently leaked image on the web suggests that the as yet unnamed sequel to Apple's mid-range iPod nano would resemble a stubby blend between today's model and the company's full-size players, borrowing the width and larger screen of the video iPod but the colorful look and short body of the more diminutive nano. The photo also showed the iPod in five paler (and more controversial) variants of today's iPod nano colors.

The squat, out-of-proportion look has been dismissed by some as a hoax. But after a swift attack by Apple's legal team -- which essentially confirmed the widely syndicated image as authentic by claiming it was "stolen" from the company -- online news media quickly savaged the new player, hinting that Apple's new darling could stand to slim down its wide-hipped look.

Gizmodo was first out of the gates with a mockup image and an ample dose of blunt criticism. "Compared to the iPhone, we think it looks like crap a step back," said blog editor Jesus Diaz. "It better be 3mm thin -- or else."

Other sites that followed were even less kind to the jukebox, with Engadget unflatteringly naming it the "iPod nano 'phatty'" and comment posters labeling it the "Danny DeVito of iPods." At iLounge, a size comparison harshly christened the mystery player as the "iPod bilbo" -- a not especially subtle jab at its Hobbit-like appearance.

Giz-style rendition of third-gen iPod nano (aka "iPod phatty") | Source | Gizmodo

Whatever the reaction, checks by AppleInsider with multiple suppliers make it clear that the a nano replacement is on its way to stores as soon as next week. Best Buy and Target retailers across the US have all but run out of the flash-based player on shelves and in warehouses. Some hopeful buyers have simply been turned back by store clerks who neither had players to sell nor an estimate of when new models would be ready.

For those that had received advanced notice from their suppliers, deliveries weren't set to resume until at least September 6th, according to the reports. This follows just a day after the planned Apple event where the company is expected to announce Mac OS X-based replacements for the majority of its iPod line.

And while the 'fatboy' nano is almost certain to be one of these replacements along with a refreshed iPod shuffles, additional sources have observed that 30GB and 80GB models are listed as discontinued or otherwise impossible to order from regular buyers, further hinting at the much-anticipated arrival of a video iPod akin to the iPhone.
post #2 of 104
Dunno. I kind of like the 'fatboy'.
post #3 of 104
I still don't believe for one minute that Apple would actually put its name on a anything as misproportioned and ungainly as that thing.
post #4 of 104
that's really ugly..! i hope it's not true...
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post #5 of 104
^^^
I agree. That's just not pleasing to the eye.
post #6 of 104
I highly doubt this is a real apple product photo. It's supposed to be based on OS X - yet look at the controls - it's from the old style of iPod. You have a completely new user interface (OS X) but you don't change the input controls - that doesn't make any sense.
post #7 of 104
This is clearly NOT a replacement for the iPod nano, it is in fact a flash based iPod video with probably 8GB and 16GB capacities.

What we will see on Tuesday will be :-

1. iPod shuffle, no change except a new colour - Red

2. iPod nano, new colours, new interface, maybe slightly smaller, but possible no change in the physical layout.

3. New iPod category - the design we are talking about in this thread, same screen size as the current iPod viedo, but much smaller, less capacity, etc

4. Possibly a touch iPod similar to the iPhone using a touch interface, BUT this may not be ready quite yet. So instead we may just get the current iPod video upgraded with larger discs and the new interface, perhaps a little thinner and better battery life.

One thing is for sure these images are NOT the new iPod nano.

Ian
post #8 of 104
even if this is the new iPod nano, I really like it. If its the flash based 8-16gb flash based iPods, I will definitely buy it. And I think MACOSX can run using the scroll wheel control man, its not that hard. Well incase it is hard, that's probably where the touch screen comes in if they even make one.
post #9 of 104
I don't really mind the actual "photo" mock-ups that I've seen of the new iPod, it's a little more proportional than the digital mock-up that Gizmodo did. In addition, what happened to the notion that this might be a fourth tier to the iPod family. I read somewhere else that Apple might add a new line. Being some sort system as follows:

1. iPod (Full-Screen) (80GB+)
2. iPod Flash (Fatboy) (8GB 16GB)
3. iPod Nano (4GB 8GB)
4. iPod Shuffle (1GB 2GB)
post #10 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by parky View Post

One thing is for sure these images are NOT the new iPod nano.

Ian

How are you so sure, parky -- I mean -- Ian?
post #11 of 104
Stop the production lines!
Throw them all in the sea!
Chop off the designers' heads with a samurai sword!

C'mon they're not that bad. Maybe you need the extra space to hold it to you can operate the touch screen with your other hand.
post #12 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buck View Post

Dunno. I kind of like the 'fatboy'.

Yeah, looks good to me.

Put a stick underneath it and call it the iPod Dove bar.
post #13 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

How are you so sure, parky -- I mean -- Ian?

Sorry - no comment.

Ian
post #14 of 104
I really hope that this new "supersized" nano is just a rumour. That is one ugly nano...
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post #15 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eduardo View Post

I really hope that this new "supersized" nano is just a rumour. That is one ugly nano...

How many times do I need to say this - IT IS NOT THE NEW iPod nano!!

It is the new iPod Video - flash based, smaller size, new interface, 8GB and 16GB.

The nano will still exist!!
post #16 of 104
these are not iPod nanos, instead iPod minis

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Nov '09 | iMac 21.5" C2D 3.06 Ghz | Intel 330 240GB SSD | ATI

Sep '12| Toshiba 14" 1366 x 768! | i5 3rd Gen 6GB| Intel x25-m 120GB SSD | Win 7|  Viewsonic VX2255wmb 22" LCD
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post #17 of 104
I like Engadget and Gizmodo, but when they review style over function they drive me nuts. To say the least their opinions are designed to provoke controvery, not inform.

Do they think Apple still designs products in the Jobs family garage? Whatever these next iPods look like, it will largely be in response to extensive consumer testing -- the opinions of real customers who have touched and used sample iPods, not merely stared at Photoshop mockups.

What's more, who says the present Nano design is state of the art? You need a larger form factor to accomodate a video screen big enough to display a movie at comfortable size.
post #18 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by parky View Post

This is clearly NOT a replacement for the iPod nano, it is in fact a flash based iPod video with probably 8GB and 16GB capacities.

What we will see on Tuesday will be :-

1. iPod shuffle, no change except a new colour - Red

2. iPod nano, new colours, new interface, maybe slightly smaller, but possible no change in the physical layout.

3. New iPod category - the design we are talking about in this thread, same screen size as the current iPod viedo, but much smaller, less capacity, etc

4. Possibly a touch iPod similar to the iPhone using a touch interface, BUT this may not be ready quite yet. So instead we may just get the current iPod video upgraded with larger discs and the new interface, perhaps a little thinner and better battery life.

One thing is for sure these images are NOT the new iPod nano.

Ian

No, not a new category, but a rebirth of an old one. The iPod mini returns.

I like the design, even if it's the nano, I still like it.

I have some friends that like the mini's wider form factor and never got nanos because they hated the design, I think they'll like this better
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post #19 of 104
How many people do you know who watch movies on their iPod? In my case no-one. Everyone uses them strictly for music except one guy who plays the games. A bigger screen is u s e l e s s.
post #20 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buck View Post

Dunno. I kind of like the 'fatboy'.

I at least like the fact that it will, if photo is correct, have a larger screen!

I thought the new iMac was ho-hum, until I saw it in person, which seeing it in the 'flesh' looked better than it's photos.

If this photo is for real, I say to the naysayers, see it in person, get a chance to hold it in your hands, see how the photos and other things look on the larger screen, etc., etc. You are only criticizing it now because of what you are so used to. I bet all those making cat calls would still be doing it if the iPod nano's or mini's or whatever were short and fat since it's product launch and then Apple came out with the design that it currently has. People would say that it has gone anorexic or something to that nature...

Wait and see, my friends, wait and see...

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post #21 of 104
I don't get what all the whining is about.

This is supposed to be a new model inbetween the nano and the iPod, which will be updated to a touchscreen form factor like the iPhone.

It's an upgrade from the nano with a bigger screen and video playback. To make the screen bigger, you have to make it wider, simple as that. And if it's wider, you can keep it short or you can add unnecessary height to keep it more "skinny". The other alternative is to switch to a sideways landscape layout with the control wheel off to one side, which I think would get an even harsher reaction.

Personally, I want the biggest screen in the smallest form factor. This seems to be the best way to do it on a model that still has a clickwheel.

I think many of the doubters are going to change their tune once they see this on and playing a video, next to a nano. Faced with that, who is really going to argue that they should have kept a way smaller screen just for the sake of a "pretty shape"?
post #22 of 104
I guess, I'm the only one who thinks it looks fine. It's not the pinnacle of design, I'll admit, but I don't think it's ugly.
post #23 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by ascii View Post

How many people do you know who watch movies on their iPod? In my case no-one. Everyone uses them strictly for music except one guy who plays the games. A bigger screen is u s e l e s s.

I use iPod for video probably more than music, although the vast majority of that is on a TV screen through the output cable.

I'd love to upgrade my shuffle to a mini with that configuration, even though I wouldn't watch much video on that screen, I'd still much prefer the bigger one over the current nano size.
post #24 of 104
"squat, out-of-proportion look" etc. etc.

All NOTHING more than words for "different."

But change comes anyway--and brings benefits with it.

If people were using a wide nano NOW, and a tall, thin one were rumored, the press would be sobbing "ugly, skinny, spindly, and out of proportion."

Rumor or real, it's laughable to call a certain rectangle "out of proportion" as though it's some law of nature all can agree on.

People said the same about the current video iPod. (Which ironically shares the same dimensions as the "better proportioned" previous one.)
post #25 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by parky View Post

How many times do I need to say this - IT IS NOT THE NEW iPod nano!!

Well, I guess it's settled then.

post #26 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by minderbinder View Post

Personally, I want the biggest screen in the smallest form factor. This seems to be the best way to do it on a model that still has a clickwheel.

Get rid of the clickwheel. It was an advance in it's day. Touchscreen is now the state of the art.
post #27 of 104
How bout 'iPod Chubby'?
post #28 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by backtomac View Post

Get rid of the clickwheel. It was an advance in it's day. Touchscreen is now the state of the art.

Interesting idea, but not the best for everything. Newest isn't always best.

For working out or in the car, I'd much rather keep the clickwheel than a touchscreen. Not to mention I'd hate to try and do touchscreen on a tiny nano screen, not to mention the shuffle. I'd bet touchscreen is a fair amount more expensive as well, and on a cheaper model the low price means more to me than a touchscreen. And if the #2 model had touchscreen/widescreen, why even bother having those two models?

Both interfaces have advantages on different models and in different situations. I don't think clickwheel will go away completely for years, if ever.
post #29 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by nagromme View Post

"squat, out-of-proportion look" etc. etc.

All NOTHING more than words for "different."

But change comes anyway--and brings benefits with it.

If people were using a wide nano NOW, and a tall, thin one were rumored, the press would be sobbing "ugly, skinny, spindly, and out of proportion."

Rumor or real, it's laughable to call a certain rectangle "out of proportion" as though it's some law of nature all can agree on.

People said the same about the current video iPod. (Which ironically shares the same dimensions as the "better proportioned" previous one.)

We should have a little discussion about the Golden Ratio.
post #30 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Best Buy and Target retailers across the US have all but run out of the flash-based player on shelves and in warehouses.

If the new ones look like that, my guess is they'll have the opposite problem for the next few months.

Between the iMac, the Mac Pro, the Leopard interface and this if it comes out to be true, Apple's design team have really just lost it over the past few years IMO. I agree that design shouldn't take precedence over function but with Apple it does and if they screw up the design then what do they have left?

What I could see though is that Apple are doing to their ipod lineup what they do to their desktop lineup. Cripple the low end models with low spec or ugly appearance in order to push sales of the more expensive model.

If that is indeed the new ipod video, then it's yet another lame update from the lazy buggers in Cupertino. 'We have an iMac, how do we update the lineup. Oh just change the colors and change the GPU for one that's the same price and maybe take some money off'. 'We have an ipod, how do we update it. Oh just make it a little bit shorter.'
post #31 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by gloss View Post

We should have a little discussion about the Golden Ratio.

Exactly, but the given example does not fit the golden ratio that I can tell. If you go by the outer dimensions, it's too square, too wide for its height or too short for its width. The current nano needs to be .6" / 15mm wider to make it fit the golden ratio. A hypothetical golden ratio nano would make it about halfway between the current nano and the mock-up. There are other ways to fit it in, a 16:10 display would qualify, but that would look pretty weird unless you rotate the screen.
post #32 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by gloss View Post

We should have a little discussion about the Golden Ratio.

O/T, but the Golden Ratio in great art is a myth--a cool myth I'd love to believe, but a myth with only pseudoscientific support: none of the great artists actually used it, and you can find a Golden Ratio (or ANY random proportion pulled from a hat) in ANY piece of art, if you decide to find it and aren't too picky about exactness. Read this excellent book:
http://www.amazon.com/Golden-Ratio-W.../dp/0767908163

Now, the Golden Ratio in NATURE is not a myth. And pretty cool to read about. But that's nothing to do with rectangles.
post #33 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by minderbinder View Post

Interesting idea, but not the best for everything. Newest isn't always best.

For working out or in the car, I'd much rather keep the clickwheel than a touchscreen. Not to mention I'd hate to try and do touchscreen on a tiny nano screen, not to mention the shuffle. I'd bet touchscreen is a fair amount more expensive as well, and on a cheaper model the low price means more to me than a touchscreen. And if the #2 model had touchscreen/widescreen, why even bother having those two models?

Both interfaces have advantages on different models and in different situations. I don't think clickwheel will go away completely for years, if ever.

For a nano and shuffle I would keep the clickwheel. For a video iPod, I think the touch screen interface is the way to go. Get rid of the buttons and use the entire screen.
post #34 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by nagromme View Post

O/T, but the Golden Ratio in great art is a myth--a cool myth I'd love to believe, but a myth with only pseudoscientific support: none of the great artists actually used it, and you can find a Golden Ratio (or ANY random proportion pulled from a hat) in ANY piece of art, if you decide to find it and aren't too picky about exactness. Read this excellent book:
http://www.amazon.com/Golden-Ratio-W.../dp/0767908163

Now, the Golden Ratio in NATURE is not a myth. And pretty cool to read about. But that's nothing to do with rectangles.

Of course you can find anything anywhere. But that doesn't invalidate that a golden rectangle is prettier. Incidentally, I just happened to find that the iPod mini is pretty close to it...

/Adrian
post #35 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by backtomac View Post

For a nano and shuffle I would keep the clickwheel. For a video iPod, I think the touch screen interface is the way to go. Get rid of the buttons and use the entire screen.

It would be nice to have a clickwheel on the Shuffle for sure and a tiny screen to at least view basic song info. I like Sony's comparable product with screen.
post #36 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zandros View Post

Of course you can find anything anywhere. But that doesn't invalidate that a golden rectangle is prettier. Incidentally, I just happened to find that the iPod mini is pretty close to it...

/Adrian

Or at least closer than the Fatboy.
post #37 of 104
If they must use the old iPod 5 screen, it means they're making it game and video compatible. But they should've tilted the screen in standing position with just 2-3 mm wider iPod nano form factor.. would kind of work. Perhaps a little cramped finger position for the rotation finger..
post #38 of 104
While pictures can give an idea of what this iPod might be I think you'll need to hold the final version in your hand before making a final decision on how good a design it is. In this area I'll trust Jonathan I & Steve J to deliver something that a lot of people will buy.

The other side of the coin is the potential of using OS X in this and other iPods and how that will impact the overall design. That means you not only have to hold it in your hands, but play with it a bit.

I'm not going with a first reaction from the picture - I'll wait and see what is released and what it does. Then I might actually reach for my credit card.
Ken
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Ken
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post #39 of 104
And what if this is actually new, 6G, iPod, and there won't be a touchscreen version (or the t-screen version will be a new member of the family and be called video iPod or sth)
post #40 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by nagromme View Post


"squat, out-of-proportion look" etc. etc.

All NOTHING more than words for "different."

But change comes anyway--and brings benefits with it.

If you think 'ugly' just really means 'different' and change always brings benefits, then take a gander at this and tell me with a straight face this car is not ugly: http://www.humans.com/pages/ugliestcar.shtml
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