At Apple's media event today at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, the headlining act was the iPhone 5 but Apple also made a detailed announcement and subsequent presentation about the company's new music products.
"Today we're announcing some exciting changes with both the iPod and iTunes," said Eddy Cue, senior vice president of Internet Software and Services at Apple.
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The presentation started off with a rundown of iTunes statistics and an announcement about the iTunes store. Apple informed attendees that its iTunes store is now available in 63 countries. The company boasts 435 million iTunes accounts and says 60 percent of iTunes downloads come from mobile devices. A new iTunes store is slated to launch in October, Cue said. The store is being redesigned to be "radically simpler," featuring improved performance. Among the features discussed, the new store will have a preview-while-browsing function and much, much more in store.
Next, Apple's iPod leader Greg Joswick came on stage to discuss the company's wildly popular iPods, of which 350 million have been sold to date.
"We really wanted to take a chance to reinvent the [iPod] nano," Joswick said.
As such, it has the following features:
- 2.5-inch multi-touch display
- Brand new home screen
- FM tuner with DVR functionality
- Enables viewing of photos and video
- Built-in pedometer
- Battery life of 30 hours of music
- Comes with the new "Lightning" connector
The 7th generation Nano will come in 7 colors: aluminum, black, purple, green, blue, yellow and red. It will retail for $149 for 16GB when it becomes available for purchase in October.
The next topic of discussion: the new iPod Touch, which measures in at 6.1 mm thickness and weighs 88 grams. It utilizes an A5 dual-core processor for 7x faster graphics. The backing is aluminum with a brushed finish and the front features a 4-inch retina display. Battery life for the device offers up to 8 hours of video. Siri is also supported in the new Touch. Additionally, the device has an updated 5 megapixel iSight camera. Similar to the iPhone 5, it has a 5 element lens, sapphire crystal lens cover and has the panorama feature.
The 5th generation iPod Touch will be offered in five colors: raw aluminum, black, blue, yellow and red. It is also expected to become available in October and will retail for $299 for the 32GB version and $399 for the 64GB version.
Lastly, Apple unveiled new earphones called EarPods. They are designed so that the directed speaker port points forward into the user's ear canal.
"The shape of the EarPod is actually defined by the geometry of your ear, but they don't create a seal the way other in-ear headphones do," Joswick said.