About 5 years ago I picked up an Apple iPod Mini at Best Buy for $150. The box was a cube, it held the player, an assortment of cables, software, charger, and ear-bud headphones with foam covers.
Today I finally got my top of the line 80gb iPod Video at Best Buy for $350. The box was about the size of 3 CD cases stacked, had only a USB cable, no charger, no software, and the ear buds came without foam.
Now with the success of the iPhone Iâ€™m not surprised that Apple has been able to cut corners to a round of applause from the lemmings that sop up their technology blindly but this is stupid. Where I got the charger for free before, I now have to drop $30 for the accessoryâ€¦ mind you thatâ€™s after Iâ€™ve already dropped $30 for a protective case. I don’t even get the foam bits for the ear-buds – my ears are a little bigger than average and if I break a sweat these things are gonna fall out.
Also, I didnâ€™t need a protective case for my $150 iPod mini. This iPod video has a paint-job about as fragile as a Bentley in the auto-wash. I wanted an arm-band, but apparently all the arm-bands end up scratching the crap out of the pretty black paint.
What Apple should do, is make a friggin iPod as tough as the Mini, screw this glossy shiny crap, with the same amount of space and capability as the top of the line video. I dropped my Mini at least a dozen times and it just kept on running â€“ Iâ€™ll scream if I ever drop this thing. Sure it can do more, but it seems the frailty has increased in tandem with the capability.
I personally don’t give a shit about the image value of being seen with an iPod or an iPhone, I need function over form and IMHO the iPod is still the best on the market. That said, when generation 6 comes out I’m really hoping that Apple takes the lead again and releases something a little tougher than the fragile piece of art I now own.