New Apple iPod nano Hands-on: The Right Touch?


It’s easy to be skeptical about the new iPod nano, which features a wee 2.5-inch display. Yes, it’s amazing that Apple shoehorned a touchscreen inside a device that weighs just 1.1 ounces and weighs .21 inches thick. But how well does it work? Actually, quite well. During our brief hands-on time, the screen was plenty responsive, whether we were firing up a video or pinching to zoom on photos. Ultimately, though, the nano is best for people who want to travel really light with their music and have some multimedia fun on the side.

Read on for more impressions.

The iPod nano comes in seven fashionable color options, and we checked out the green model. It had a nice sheen to the aluminum design and looks and feels like it will be able to stand up to workouts or anything else you have planned for this little guy. Speaking of which, a built-in pedometer and Nike+ will tell you how far you’ve gone. 

The 432 x 240 screen is certainly sharp, but we’re not sure many people will want to watch movies and TV shows on this device. Maybe the kids because they have better eyesight. 

Design wise, Apple did a nice job with making the volume buttons easy to find by feel and easy to press (take note, Amazon). Other highlights include a FM tuner with a live pause feature. You can even rewind 15 minutes if you missed anything.

Our biggest issue with the new nano is the price. While $149 isn’t unreasonable, you can pick up a last-generation iPod touch for just $50 more, which will give you access to tons of games and apps. So it really comes down to what you value more: portability or versatility.

Mark Spoonauer
Mark Spoonauer
Responsible for the editorial vision for Laptop Mag and Tom's Guide, Mark Spoonauer has been Editor in Chief of LAPTOP since 2003 and has covered technology for nearly 15 years. Mark speaks at key tech industry events and makes regular media appearances on CNBC, Fox and CNN. Mark was previously reviews editor at Mobile Computing, and his work has appeared in Wired, Popular Science and Inc.
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