ipod Touch Review

So a couple of weeks ago I bought an ipod touch to replace my old 30GB ipod classic which was having problems with the headphone jack. The choice I had was to either replace it with a 160GB hard drive classic which could contain my entire music collection for me to access anywhere at anytime, or I could go for the much more expensive ipod touch with the flash drive with only 16GB (32 was just out of the question price wise.)

It was while listening to a podcast where a chap had called the host asking for advice on the same problem as myself, the headphone jack, and the host was almost orgasming about his new ipod touch that I decided I would have to buy one for myself. The biggest negative was the memory. I was used to carrying around all my music on the Classic and being able to listen to anything I wanted, however, I primarily use my ipod to listen to podcasts at work and it gets used every single day so I decided I could live with managing my sync options on itunes.

So this small parcel arrived through the letterbox ( I was surprised at just how small) I unwrapped this parcel and was a little disappointed at the fact there was no wall charger, just a USB cable so you have to charge it using your computer. Never mnd I thought, I’ll just use the charger I used for my Classic. But no, It wasn’t suitable ( a little bit like Nokia who until recently had the charger that fitted every Nokia phone I had ever had,) so I had to buy a separate charger from Amazon. The one I chose was a 3 in 1 charger which also had a car charger which was perfect for work.

dsc000341

Another couple of things I bought for it were a screen protector (in hindsight I think this was pointless) and a leather flip case. I have always been into protecting my products with cases or Hori screen protectors, my DS, PSP, digital cameras and phones have all been given the treatment and people are always taking the piss because of my almost OCD ways, but If I ever dropped one of my geeky gadgets and there was no protection, I would be devastated.

Flip case and screen protector

After the first charge and pairing up with my WiFi (so easy to do) I went straight to the apps. store to look for fun and interesting add ons. Now this is where the Touch really comes into its own. From the useless but fun lightsaber app to the wonderful resistor code app for work, the app. store is just so cool and I spent the first night browsing and installing countless applications.

The Wifi feature is just so handy. If I’m lying in bed and suddenly remember an unsent email or a post I have to stick on Twitter, then I just fire up the Touch rather than having to switch my laptop on again. I’m not keen on the Safari browser though and love Apple to allow use of  an Opera Mini app. and I also wish I could find a few more open WiFi spots to make use of it but it seems people are finally catching on to being a little more careful with security.

As I said, I mainly use my ipod to listen to and watch podcasts and the screen on this little beauty is outstanding and I could easily watch a full length movie on it with no problems and it’s perfect for video podcasts. This is also the first ipod to feature an inbuilt speaker which is not before time, now it isn’t the worlds most powerful speaker but you can listen to it in a quiet environment and is fine for listening to while chilling out in the bath.

This is my first ipod with flash memory. I’m used to having spinning drives which can hold all my music but is very bad for listening to whilst jogging, and If I ever take up jogging again then the flash memory will be ideal for that. On the downside, I cannot store my entire music collection like before which I thought would be Okay at first but you inevitably want to play something that isn’t synced up to the Touch.

The one big thing I miss about my old Classic is the tactility.I could listen to it while it was in my pocket and I could operate it with the nice click system without having to remove it. Now I have to take it out of my pocket every time I want to do something apart from adjusting the volume. And you can’t even buy a remote control for it so the young chap in the Apple store informed me, something to do with the touch screen software clashing with remote control hardware. But if anyone else knows any different then please let me know.

So to summarise. This gadget really is beautiful and versatile, It offers so much more than it’s previous incarnations, but it does come at a cost. No wall charger (which I think is unforgivable – Come on Apple, stop thinking about the aesthetics of the packaging and bundle this item please), no instructions or manual to advertise what this thing can do and not much memory. Even 32GB is not enough for most peoples music library

Despite these small faults I do love this ipod Touch and It’s going to overtake my Classic as my almost favourite gadget. This could be the start of a beautiful relationship. Just one word of advice, If you do buy one you must get a case for it, I have really nice slim leather one that although tight at first, now fits perfectly and looks the part while offering protection should it fall out of my very clumsy hands.

Here are some pros and cons of the ipod Touch.

Pros.                                                                                                                       Cons.

Looks Gorgeous                                                                                                 No wall charger

Flash memory                                                                                                    No tactility

Inbuilt speaker                                                                                                  Safari browser only (no open source)

Screen size                                                                                                           Quite pricey

Glass screen.

What you get

My new best friend

Advertisements

The amazing Sky+ box.

This little beauty has literally changed the way I watch TV forever.  The Sky+ box is a PVR (personal video recorder) that basically lets you create your own TV channel. Indeed when Sky came out with this product, the advertising campaign was centered around this idea.

My version has an 80GB hard drive which allows the user to store up to 40 hours of TV. If a TV show that you like is part of an ongoing series, Sky+ allows you to automatically record every episode with just one press of a button, I found this feature so handy as you don’t have to worry about schedule changes, the box will do it all for you. You can also record two channels simultaneously and even watch something recorded previously.

The interface is so simple to use. It’s all so concise and well thought out and even my old Grandma (bless her heart) could use this easily. It’s amazing that such a technological breakthrough can be used by the very vast majority of the public.

Since I got this thing nearly two years ago, I don’t watch television when the channels say I have to, I just settle down, check out my planner and choose to suit my mood. You can even whizz through the adverts at 30*  speed, no more annoying breaks. The only drawback is that you sometimes don’t get to see you favourite shows for a couple of weeks after original broadcast.

I know this sounds like an advert for the 800lb gorilla that is Sky, but I really love this gadget and is in my top five all time favourite Geek toys. Go ahead, try it for yourself and I can almost promise you that you, like me, will change your viewing habits forever.

Nintendo and Sony have stopped me reading books.

For many many years I used to read every single day. I would read for at least an hour every night before lights out and would bring out my trusted paperbackat any given opportunity. At one point I was lucky enough to have a job that allowed me to indulge in what at the time, was my favourite pastime. I would read constantly and got through several books a month. My book collection took pride of place (along with my Trek videos) and I had to arrange them in author by author order. Totally anal about it all.

Then, a couple of years ago I bought a Nintendo DS and a Sony PSP. I have always been into console gaming but whereas before I could switch off the console and just chill in bed reading Stephen King, now I could take the game into that bed and waste away the hours dragging styluses and giving myself Playstation thumb (that horrible cramp you suffer from too much PSP action.

Over the months, I discovered I wasn’t getting through the books anymore. Indeed, I was taking far too long to read anything and my precious books were gathering dust, instead of reading a few pages in my spare moments, I would fire up the PSP for a couple of missions on GTA or try to get the elusive gold stars on Mario Kart DS, It even got to the point where I’d play the damn things on the toilet.

I would say now that I haven’t read a book in over two years and I have a couple of dozen unread books in my bookshelf. And I feel sooo guilty. I realise that gaming is probably doing me no favours and I do miss a good read in the evening  but I just can’t seem to snap myself out of it, the lure of my jet black shiny DS or PSP almost always wins and once more find my self with achy thumbs at gone midnight.

Now I really do need to change my ways. I have two young children and I always stated that reading was so important and that I would set a good example to them by teaching them the importance and beauty of the book. I now have to cut down on the consoles and try to extend my vocabulary again. I have made a good start by reading to them every night before they go to sleep and all three of us enjoy those final few minutes of their day. Perhaps soon I will discover the paperback reading bug once more and get back to some sort of normalcy. (but I wouldn’t hold your breath though).