The New iPod Shuffle
The new ipod shuffle is really cool. I got it as a Valentine’s Day present from my fiancee (she kicks ass) and I use it almost every day. As usual, Apple hit it right with form factor and design, and this little device fixes the issues that existed with the generation 1 shuffles.
First let’s talk form factor. The body is made of brushed aluminum and feels sturdy and reliable in your hand. Little pieces of plastic (like most miniature mp3 players and the original shuffle) just don’t compare with something that feels solid and metallic. Also, the biggest pain that existed with the original shuffle was where to put it. I use my shuffle when I exercise. I would prefer to only run when I’m being chased, but I force myself because it is good exercise. Most running shorts don’t come with a convenient pocket for an mp3 player – the new shuffle fills that need with a built in clip. And it is so small and light that it doesn’t drag your waist band down or flop around when you’re pounding across the street to avoid getting smashed by a city bus while jaywalking. Is nice.
Sometimes, especially when you have a full 1 gigabyte (that’s the capacity) of music on the thing, it’d be nice to know what song is playing, or where you are in the list of music. But I think that most people (myself included) accept not having a screen or interface for the sake of minimal size and weight. I just set it on random and take off.
The battery lasts forever. I’ve used it consistently (about an hour at a time) and not charged it for over a month and never run out of battery. Maybe that means I don’t run as often as I should. In any case, Apple claims 12 hours of battery life when fully charged, and I think that runs true. You do need to use their little docking station, both to charge it and to add / remove music from it. I’d like it if I could maybe use a USB cable instead (easier to carry) and not be married to the dock, but it’s small and light, and it is sort of cool looking.
The metal, while it is durable and solid, does cut into the skin a little bit when I wear it on my waistband. I could clip to a sleeve, but I usually just suck it up or tuck the front of my shirt into my waist just behind the player. It works, but I wouldn’t mind some rounded edges on the inside of the clip.
Overall, this thing is awesome. The buttons are easy to press even while moving, and the whole thing pretty much rocks. My buddy Kurt bought one when it first came out, and I was uber-jealous. Then he told me that he lost his after a serious night ofdrinking with his boss. I started to commiserate with him, but he interrupted me to say he was glad. This way he was able to justify a blue one. 🙂
The basic specs are:
- Height: 1.07 inches
- Width: 1.62 inches
- Depth: 0.41 inch (including clip)
- Weight: 0.55 ounce
- Capacity: 1GB
- Playing Time (fully charged): 12 hours
For more comprehensive technical specs see the Apple website:
You can buy it on Apple’s website as well. As usual they will do a free engraving for you, and you can have standard shipping for free. You should buy one, it is rad.
There is a cool review of the original iPod shuffle to be found here: http://www.livedigitally.com/2005/02/27/please-try-not-to-eat-it-a-review-of-the-very-edible-ipod-shuffle/