iPod touch (2015)

The iPod saves it­self from be­com­ing a foot­note in Ap­ple’s his­tory

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Ap­ple’s mu­sic player lives on…

From £159 Man­u­fac­turer Ap­ple, ap­ple.com/uk Ca­pac­ity 16/32/64/128GB Con­nec­tiv­ity Wi-Fi, Blue­tooth 4.1 Cam­eras 8MP iSight, 1080p HD video record­ing, 1.2MP FaceTime (720p HD video)

To some, the iPod brand is a dead one, su­per­seded in ev­ery way by the iPhone. It re­minds us of when iTunes mu­sic was ev­ery­thing and apps were just on the cusp of a revo­lu­tion. Fast for­ward to now and the iPhone swal­lows up all the uses you once had for an iPod and so much more. In a bat­tle to stay rel­e­vant, it’s no won­der this is the first iPod touch re­fresh for three years – it’s hardly a main­stay of the mod­ern Ap­ple ecosys­tem, and has been re­moved as a cat­e­gory on the Ap­ple web­site. But with Ap­ple Mu­sic now launched, the fo­cus of ‘mu­sic in your pocket’ once again be­comes a mar­ket worth ex­plor­ing. Yet in a sur­pris­ing turn, the sixth-gen­er­a­tion iPod touch takes some gi­ant leaps from the 2012 model, while leav­ing other ar­eas more or less un­touched.

The en­try point of £159 for a six­th­gen­er­a­tion iPod touch with 16GB stor­age is sig­nif­i­cantly lower than the fifth-gen­er­a­tion’s launch price of £249. How­ever, the 2012 model was slashed to this price in 2014. But look un­der the hood and you’re get­ting some­thing quite dif­fer­ent here.

Whereas the 2012 iPod touch re­lied on the A5 pro­ces­sor found in the iPhone 4S, the 2015 up­grade skips a few it­er­a­tions and puts it on a par with the cur­rent iPhone 6 (well, cur­rent un­til we see a new one in Septem­ber). For a de­vice that seem­ingly doesn’t re­ally need that level of power, Ap­ple could have eas­ily stuffed older chips in there with lit­tle com­plaint. But to have an iPod touch that’s once again an iPhone with­out the phone makes it rel­e­vant once more, and young gamers will delight in the A8’s ca­pa­bil­i­ties. Just be warned – this iPod gets very hot un­der load!

Along­side the 64-bit A8, there’s an M8 mo­tion co-pro­ces­sor, mean­ing your iPod touch is a much bet­ter fit­ness de­vice too. It’s a half­way house sadly, as Ap­ple’s de­lib­er­ately not in­cluded sup­port for the Ap­ple Watch. It wants that to be an exclusive fea­ture of the iPhone, help­ing to drive sales for its most im­por­tant iOS de­vice. There’s also no GPS in an iPod touch, so some of the things that the M8 is sup­posed to as­sist with (dis­tance and al­ti­tude) can’t be quite as ac­cu­rate.

Snap happy?

The next ma­jor bump found in the 2015 of­fer­ing is, of course, the cam­era. It’s 8MP but it’s not quite the iPhone 6’s cam­era. It’s es­sen­tially the same as the cam­era found in an iPhone 5c with its f/2.4 aper­ture. Yet that cam­era is very good, and con­sid­er­ing the younger de­mo­graphic at which the iPod touch is largely aimed, it’s ab­so­lutely fine for gen­eral use and post­ing to so­cial me­dia. Even so, we feel that the True Tone (rather than LED) flash of the iPhone 5s would have been a nice ad­di­tion for night shoot­ing.

When it comes to bat­tery life, the 2015 iPod touch will con­tin­u­ally stream a video for al­most the eight hours that’s claimed, and we ac­tu­ally topped 40 hours mu­sic play­back by nearly 20 min­utes. It’s good, and given the very slim pro­file of the iPod we weren’t ex­pect­ing more. In fact, the chas­sis here is iden­ti­cal to the 2012 model, apart from the re­moval of the dread­ful loop but­ton for adding a strap – it looks far nicer with­out it. The iPod might not be the dar­ling of Ap­ple’s gad­gets any more, but the iPod is back from the dig­i­tal dol­drums with a place in peo­ple’s lives. Chris­tian Hall

An ideal iOS de­vice for kids or for those look­ing to re­place an age­ing iPod that acts as a fam­ily mu­sic hub.

Fi­nally, a 128GB iPod touch!

Bet­ter cam­era, CPU and bat­tery

No silly loop but­ton

Lacks Touch ID

Thanks to Ap­ple Mu­sic, the fo­cus of ‘mu­sic in your pocket’ once again be­comes a mar­ket worth ex­plor­ing

With a max­i­mum ca­pac­ity of 128GB, there’s plenty of space for all your tunes on the iPod touch.

The new iPod touch may have an 8MP cam­era, but it’s not quite as good as the one found in the iPhone 6.

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