Saturday, February 20, 2010

New Apple iPod shuffle: Smaller than some other stuff we found

Do you like to use Ipod shuffle? now new Apple Ipod Shuffle launch in the market. But i don't know if this product are already market in Malaysia? anybody know? 

Apple's third-generation iPod shuffle is the next best thing to an invisible MP3 player, but quirky controls, limited features and a diminished battery life mean it won't appeal to everyone 


The shuffle is purely a digital audio player. There's no FM radio, no voice recording, and, obviously, no photo or video playback. Audio formats supported include MP3, AAC, Audible, WAV, AIFF and Apple Lossless, but not WMA or FLAC.

As far as charging goes, the shuffle comes with a 10cm (4-inch) USB adaptor that connects between the headphone output and your computer. The shuffle is rated at 10 hours of playback time -- 2 hours less than the previous generation, but still enough to get you through a week's worth of casual use. A full recharge should take about 3 hours.

Another new shuffle feature is the ability to sync and navigate between multiple playlists, audio podcasts and audiobooks. Again, Apple uses the VoiceOver feature and headphone remote to accomplish this, announcing your playlists, podcasts or audiobooks one by one if you hold down the clicker for approximately 3 seconds. Once VoiceOver starts listing your content, just press the clicker again to select the content you want to play. If you've got a tonne of playlists, you can use the remote's volume keys to quickly skip back and forth through the list.

The shuffle handles the playback of audiobook and podcast content differently to playback of music files, and assumes you'd prefer to always play this type of content sequentially -- even if the playback switch is set to shuffle. Audiobook and podcast content is also kept out of the shuffle's start-up music mix, ensuring that a stray chapter of A Tale of Two Cities never ruins the mood of your workout. 

But, if jogging to classic literature is your thing, you'll be relieved to know that any audiobook synced to the shuffle is treated as a separate playlist. Podcasts all get thrown into a shared podcast playlist, and play in order of show title, not release date. Like any other iPod, the shuffle automatically resumes your podcasts or audiobooks where you last left off, allowing you to enjoy them in small doses without scanning back and forth to find your place.


Compared with other sub-£60 MP3 players on the market (for example, the SanDisk Sansa Clip or Creative Zen Stone Plus), the shuffle's microscopic design isn't enough to make up for the limited features, relatively high price, diminished battery life, quirky navigation and a headphone remote system that reeks of planned obsolescence.
 The headphone remote system will undoubtedly put some people off

MP3 players like the shuffle that are aimed at the gym and jogger crowd are particularly susceptible to issues of headphone fit, comfort, and wear and tear, and Apple's headphone remote needlessly complicates the process of replacing or upgrading the shuffle's earbuds. This is not to say that the headphone control is a bad feature, but also having controls on the actual device would help avoid navigation-related confusion and improve the product's usefulness in the long term.


The third-generation shuffle has plenty going for it: the aluminium and steel construction is sturdy, the design is unobtrusive, there's a whopping 4GB of storage, and the VoiceOver technology allows you to control playback without taking your eyes away from what you're doing. But sacrifices have been made elsewhere to achieve the small size and minimalistic design, and we have a hard time giving the shuffle an unqualified thumbs-up.
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