Apple iPod Touch (second generation) Review


01.06.2009

It would be great to take the iPod Classic, add a large touch screen with great quality, add Web Browsing, Wi-Fi music Downloads, use that large screen for games and download stuff from App Store directly from the device ? Uh… wait, it has been done, it’s the iPod Touch, now up to the second generation.

Even though the features are great and set the iPod in a category of its own, they might be a little too much if you are looking for a simpler music player. Despite this, with a lower price (about $230 for the 8GB model), better hardware and more features, the second generation iPod Touch is a great device.

If you are not in search for ultra portability, the second generation iPod Touch should be the first player you are considering.

Buy Apple iPod Touch 8GB

Buy Apple iPod Touch 16GB

Buy Apple iPod Touch 32GB

Design

Apple changed only a few small things of the design of the iPod Touch. The second generation model has basically the same dimensions: 4.3 inches by 2.4 inches by 0.31 inch. Also, the 3.5 inch glass screen is the same as with the first generations. The things that have changed are the finishes, a new volume switch and the back of the phone is now covered in chromed steel. Although everything else remains the same (design-wise), the phone feels sturdier when you pick it up.

The Features

It was always known that the iPod is great, but it is expensive. And with the prices varying from $230 for the 8GB model, to $300 for the 16GB model and up to $400 for the 32GB model, there are lot of players out there that cost way less for the same capacity. But if you want the features, you pay the buck – quite fair.

The device comes with probably the best music player, a video playback support (iTunes rentals is supported and there is also an included YouTube player), a Sfari Web Browser, an Outlook, Exchange, MobileMe, Gmail, Yahoo, any-POP-email-service compatible email reader, a music store that you can access via Wi-Fi and the calendar and organizing utilities. A little more than you whould expect from an Mp3 player? Wait to see what you can download via the iTunes App Store and how you can expand the devices functionality with additional hardware modules.

As with the iPod Nano 4G, the second generation of the Touch comes with the Genius feature. This feature will generate 25 song-playlists from your collection. If that collection is big enough, the result will be quite interesting. All the new software features can be updated on your first generation iPod Touch for $10, but the built in speaker, the Nike+ support and the ability to record audio via the headphone jack (you will have to use a compatible headset) and other hardware-linked features are available only with the second generation device.

It seems that we will have to wait a little longer for an iPod to be able to play Flash video or audio content, even though this device comes with a Safari browser.

The ability to download music from the iTunes store is something we like, with the whole process going as easy and as fast as possible.

Buy Apple iPod Touch 8GB

Buy Apple iPod Touch 16GB

Buy Apple iPod Touch 32GB

Performance

With a few exceptions, the applications run as smoothly as possible. The attention for detail is one of the few things that will make you realize why the iPod is the king of Mp3 players. Too bad that the audio EQ is limited only to some predefined settings, with limited enhancement settings. This is probably the only domain where the iPod is not ruling the hill.

The video quality is slightly better than the one offered by the first version. Loading videos to your device is not that much of a complicated task and the Youtube player is a really great thing.

The battery will hold for about 36 hours of music playback and 6 hours of video playback. This 36-6 score is a real progress from the 22 hours of music playback and 5 hours of video playback offered by the first generation.

Like mentioned in the review for the iPod Nano 4G (read it here), one of the problems with this second generation iPod Touch is that you will have to use the eight version of the iTunes software. There is no way around it and there are lots of people that just hate this software, although there are at least as many that find it very useful. Imposing a software like this is hardly right from my personal point of view so maybe you should try the software before buying.

Bottom Line

The second generation of the iPod Touch is just great. You will have a tough time if you will try to find the same features in other players so we will try to save you some time: there is no such device. The iPhone Touch, second generation, is the best in its domain by far. If you are looking for better audio quality and want to spend less, the Samsung P3 should be you next choice while if you are not interested in the complex features (but you should be), then the alternative we suggest is The iPod Nano 4G or the Microsoft Zune 120.

Buy Apple iPod Touch 8GB

Buy Apple iPod Touch 16GB

Buy Apple iPod Touch 32GB

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