Tech Talk: Add colour to your listening this year with the iPod touch and nano

Posted on December 7, 2012

Murray Hill Tech TalkThe latest updates to the device that turned Apple’s fortunes around when it was introduced to the world on October 21, 2001, are the best yet.

Of course I’m talking about the iPod.

The newest iPod touch, and iPod nano are a far cry from the original iPod introduced that fall day, and, while they may not have the impact that the original did, they are still relevant in today’s world. With over 350 million iPods sold worldwide, the iPod has changed the way a generation listens to music, and the enhancements and improvements just keep on coming.

In September, Apple announced a new iPod touch and iPod nano, adding the new Lightening connector and new Apple EarPods. Both come in an array of colours – the touch comes in slate, white, pink, yellow and blue, while the nano comes in slate, white, purple, pink, yellow, light blue and blue. Both also are available in red, and a portion of the proceeds from sales of the red versions goes to the Global Fund to fight Aids in Africa.

The new Apple iPod touch

Photo – Apple: The new Apple iPod touch

The 5th generation iPod touch runs on iOS 6, Apple latest operating system, and the 4-inch multi-touch retina display is, in a word – gorgeous.

The 5-megapixel camera shoots full 1080p HD video and the A5x chipset onboard makes this the fastest iPod touch yet. It offers up to 40 hours of audio and 8 hours of video playback on a full charge, and comes in a 32GB version for $299, and a 64GB version for $399. At 123.4mm H x 58.6mmW x 6.1mm D, and weight of 88 grams the 5th Generation iPod touch is the thinnest and lightest full-sized iPod available.

The new iPod touch comes in five fun new colours

Photo – Apple: The new iPod touch comes in five fun new colours

Apple calls the iPod touch “Engineered for maximum funness”, and it is. The new colours and design, which features the incredibly thin aluminum body, retina display and iOS 6 integration makes this the top of the heap in terms of feature set and usability. The only device that I can think of that beats this new touch is the iPhone 5.

The new iPod nano, which is about the size of a credit card, is the thinnest iPod ever at 5.5mm thick. It comes with a 2.5-inch Multi-Touch display which makes the whole user experience much more intuitive.

With Bluetooth 4.0 built into the new iPod nano, the ability to pair with speakers, headphones and car audio systems really make this nano a lot more useful than simply a device to plug earphones into and wear while you’re on the plane or walking around.  The has Nike + support and a pedometer and the Bluetooth integration lets users connect to heart rate monitors, something very useful for those of us who want to not only listen to music while we run, but want to keep track of our fitness.

The iPod nano comes in seven colours

Photo – Apple: The iPod nano comes in seven colours

The new iPod nano is 76.5mm H x 39.6mm W x 5.5mm D and weighs in at a miniscule 31 grams. It offers about 30 hours of audio and 3.5 hours of video playback on a full charge, which takes about three hours.


PROS: Fast processors; great looking, larger screens, HD video, iOS 6 integration in the touch and the new Multi-Touch screen on the nano; great feature-sets on both devices.

CONS: None, really – they’re both pretty great devices.

TO SUM IT UP:  Either the new iPod touch or iPod nano would make a wonderful Christmas gift for the music lover on your list. Both are small, light, fast and come with great looking screens and impressive performance. The wide variety of fun new colours and impressive feature-sets offers you the ability to tailor the type of iPod you want to fit your lifestyle, and the pricing is very reasonable.

Murray Hill is lead tech writer at You can reach Murray by email at or on Twitter at @MurrayDHill

About Murray Hill

Murray Hill has been a freelance columnist appearing regularly in some of the most prominent Canadian newspapers since 1974. He began writing about technology over twenty-four years ago and he still maintains the belief that there's a gadget or gizmo for every situation and application. His fascination with technology and gadgets has endured for over fifty years, and has led to many familial discussions about the the difference between the words "need" and "want" when referring to tech. Based in Saskatoon, connect with Murray at: Author's Note: I write a column on a single product, rather than comparing products. I do this because what I write is my personal opinion on a particular product. Sometimes I get something sent to me automatically, but mostly I ask manufacturers for a particular product to review. I usually have these products for a period of a few weeks to a few months, then they are returned. I get to keep some products - usually the ones that would cost more to ship back than they are worth - and most of those items get given away. I do get an honorarium from Communicatto for writing, but get no compensation from manufacturers or the firms representing them - so nobody buys my opinion! I also try to use photos and graphics provided, mostly because I'm a terrible photographer!

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