Apple iPod Mini
Macworld, Apple anno-unced a new, smaller iPod, just as many
experts predicted. Apple included a 1-inch, 4GB hard drive instead
of the flash memory many assumed it would use. The iPod Mini
holds an impressive (for its size) 1,000 tunes at Tk.14,750.
The original iPods came in any colour you liked, as long as
it was white. The new Minis come in hues that spread across
the rainbow: silver, gold, blue, pink, and green. But the biggest
breakthrough is that the 'clickable scrollwheel' now doubles
as play/menu/fast-forward/rewind controls; pressing against
the wheel activates each of the four functions, as labelled.
Some things haven't changed. You get the same in-line remote
found in the larger iPods, as well as a sharp, scaled-down version
of the GUI found on its older brother, fitted for the Mini's
1.67-inch, white-backlit LCD. Apple also throws in a snap-on
holder with a belt clip; for extra you get an armband for the
Even at its reduced size (3.6 by 2.0 by 0.5 inches; 3.6 ounces),
the iPod Mini is larger than Rio's competing Nitrus, which will
also ship in a 4GB version later this month. The Mini uses a
smaller, non-replaceable battery that Apple claims to have optimised
so that it provides eight hours of juice. The device's US $250
(Tk.14,750) price tag is still out of reach for some consumers
and depending on Rio's pricing of its forthcoming competitor,
Apple could face stiff competition in this emerging market.
Inevitably, mini hard drive-based players will be a big story
in 2004, thanks to the availability of one-inch drives. But
the iPod is still the king of the larger devices, and unless
Rio or someone else attacks it on a price level, we see the
iPod Mini following in its footsteps.