It looks like Jobs and Apple have saved the best for last today as usual with the announcement of the new, updated 5th generation iPod nano. The new and improved nano has a host of new features including a not just a camera but a video camera, Genius mixes, FM radio with Live Pause, Voice Over and a Fitness pedometer that works with Nike.
Even with the tight-lipped Apple team we had heard the rumors that a camera was coming to the iPod and today it is finally here. Apple has implanted a video camera into the iPod nano that can record in either landscape or potrait and can record audio along with it so we’re not making silent movies here. You can then play back the video instantly and hear the audio through a built in speaker! It even comes with 15 cool-looking special effects that can be applied to the video such as Thermal, Mirror, X Ray and more.
Genius mixes are available as well, and works to find songs that go great together from your library all on it’s own. This is pretty nice-to-have but not on par with some of the other new features. We’ll have to see how the Genius stacks up to other song suggestion tools, such as Pandora.
FM radio is definitely a big plus for the iPod nano and something we here at the ‘Brick have been looking forward to. Not only has Apple brought FM radio into the iPod but it’s brought some pretty cool features along with it. The first is Live Pause and works just like it sounds. Pause the radio station your listening to and the device will cache the broadcast for up to 15 minutes. You can rewind back or fast forward to catch up. iTunes Tagging is the other new feature with the radio. This is obviously not a new idea or technology, but it is new with the iPod, allowing you to “tag” a song you like so it can be identified later should you want to buy it on iTunes.
VoiceOver is another one that we feel is nice-to-have but nothing all that great. Basically you can click to have a voice (in multiple languages mind you) let you know the name of the song you are currently listening to and who is singing it. This is in the event that you cannot or do not want to look down and read what is playing.
And of course Fitness, the last but not least feature announced for the new iPod nano. This works very similar to the Nike+ fitness kit add-on that was available for the iPod, except now it’s just built in. You’ll still need to get some Nike+ shoes and the Nike+ iPod sport kits with the sensor to put in the shoe, but then you can keep track of the information right in the iPod without an extra attachment.
The new iPod nano is available at the Apple Store today, and is going for $149 for the 8GB model and $179 for the 16GB, in as many as 9 different colors.