Feeds
90%

Apple iPod Touch

Finger-flicking good?

Build a business case: developing custom apps

And you get a free wireless internet tablet into the bargain. We can't overstate how good the Touch is at this. They're not fully comparable, but we'd rather have, say, an iPod Touch than a Nokia N800, which costs much the same but has much less memory - though it is expandable - doesn't work as smoothly and has inferior media playback apps.


Ideal for surfing?

The only thing we'd want off the N800 on the Touch as an instant messaging client. Apple should be lambasted for limiting the ability to load third-party apps on the Touch, and we can only hope it plans to start offering software add-ons via iTunes. That'd be a great way to kick off a shareware community for the player.

Register Hardware isn't an audiophile website, so we approached the Touch's sound quality from a typical consumer pick-up-and-go point of view. We didn't find the Touch to be any worse than past iPods, though you'll certainly get better sound quality through more expensive, third-party earphones, but that's true of almost every portable media player under the sun. We did notice more background noise than we'd would have liked - our ideal level is none at all, to be precise - but it's not sufficient to intrude onto a soundtrack, even during quiet passages. Apple loses points for this, but we've heard a lot worse.

It also loses points for putting the earphone socket on the bottom of the device. This worked for the first- and second-generation Nanos because if you wore the player around your neck, with the earphones uppermost, it ensured the player was the right way up when you lifted it up to look at the screen, perhaps to choose a new track. You're not going to want to carry the Touch that way and, worse, it makes it hard to remove the dock cable when you've got the earphones plugged in.

The iPhone has a pair of volume keys on the side, and we found we'd have liked these on the Touch too. They're not there because other iPods don't have them either. What other iPods do have is a clickwheel which allows you to adjust the volume without having to take the player out of your pocket or bag. The iPhone's keys have the same result. Not so the Touch, which you have to bring out in full view of all and sundry, disable the screen lock then adjust the volume slider. For those of us living in metropolitan environments, that's just not discreet enough.


One light stand

Finally, we found Apple's claim that the Touch will play music for a continuous 22 hours to be spot on. Video playback is rated at five hours per charge.

Verdict

Register Hardware wasn't excited by the new iPod Nano and the iPod Classic, but we like the iPod Touch. It's not perfect - the price is too high, and there are some niggles about its interaction with iTunes. But you can't help but be wowed by its graphical bravura, decent-size video playback and - joy upon joy - high-speed handheld web browsing. Got an iPod already? Buy the cheaper Touch and use it solely for surfing.

Build a business case: developing custom apps

90%

Apple iPod Touch

The handheld web tablet comes of age - and, guess what, it's a great iPod too...
Price: £199/$299 (8GB), £269/$399 (16GB) RRP

More from The Register

next story
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Sonos AXES support for Apple's iOS4 and 5
Want to use your iThing? You can't - it's too old
You didn't get the MeMO? Asus Pad 7 Android tab is ... not bad
Really, er, stands out among cheapie 7-inchers
Apple winks at parents: C'mon, get your kid a tweaked Macbook Pro
Cheapest models given new processors, more RAM
4K video on terrestrial TV? Not if the WRC shares frequencies to mobiles
Have your say with Ofcom now, before Freeview becomes Feeview
Leaked Windows Phone 8.1 Update specs tease details of Nokia's next mobes
New screen sizes, dual SIMs, voice over LTE, and more
Microsoft stands on shore as tablet-laden boat sails away
Brit buyers still not falling for Windows' charms
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.