After 3 years of iPod silence, Apple finally announced new versions of the popular music-playing device this week. The new iPod Touch, iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle come in some amazing new (and vibrant) colors with some really nice hardware improvements.
The hardware improvements and new colors are nice, but that's not what has me excited about these upgraded devices. When most people think about the iPod, they think about playing music, but these devices do so much more. In this post, I will ignore the iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle (not that they aren't great devices) to focus on the new iPod Touch and how it can change the way you work and play.
iPod in Business
Believe it or not, not all employees need a super-powerful desktop or laptop to get their job done. Most, however, do need a way to work on iWork documents, access Dropbox, place and receive FaceTime audio or video calls to colleagues, vendors and suppliers, and perform various tasks via the web. With it's gorgeous (albeit smaller than a laptop, of course) display, super-long battery life, powerful new A8 processor and high-quality cameras, in many ways, the iPod Touch may be the perfect solution for those employees.
In addition to WiFi, the iPod Touch also has Bluetooth (the new Bluetooth 4.1 technology) support. Not only can you pair your favorite Bluetooth speaker for audio playback from the iPod Touch, but you can also pair a Bluetooth keyboard, making business applications even more powerful than you think.
Take it a step further and add a Lightening-to-HDMI adapter, connect an HDMI-friendly display, and you now have a full-blown computer (with external keyboard and large display for your desk) for a fraction of the cost of a traditional computer (and one that at the end of the day, you can put in your pocket and take home with you)! The possibilities are endless when you think creatively.
I know what you're thinking now... "Kevin, you're crazy! You can't run Windows apps on an iPod Touch like you can a Mac, you can't install many apps that you would normally run on a Mac... this won't work". I'm not suggesting that an iPod Touch would be a perfect fit for everyone in every situation. No one should consider running out today and replacing their entire computer fleet with iPod Touches (that would be crazy!), but my intent here is to help you to think creatively about different ways to use a device that may not be apparent to you. Thinking outside the box, after all, is what I do.
iPod at Home
An iPod Touch for children is the perfect communication device solution! How many times have your children asked for an iPhone? I lost track years ago with some of my children. Why do we not give in? Cost. It's the monthly recurring cost to AT&T, Verizon, Sprint... you name it. Not only is the iPhone expensive, but the plans are even more expensive!
With an iPod Touch, you have essentially all the same features as an iPhone 6, minus the cellular capabilities. This means that while they won't be able to place traditional phone calls, they can still place (and receive) FaceTime audio and/or video calls, check email, text (using iMessage), surf the web, upload photos, download and play amazing iOS games... all the things that kids do with their devices.
I can't think of a single friend of any of my children who don't have WiFi, so when your kids go to their friends' houses,be sure they connect to their WiFi (let's be real, they would anyway), and that puts them in full contact capability with you and everyone else.
Want to really harness the power of giving your kids an iPod Touch? Enable and use "Find my Friends". This free feature allows you to track where your kids are, and your kids to track where you are. It's not only great for emergency situations, but it's great when it's time to pick them up. Gone are the days where you ask for an exact address or directions. Simply pull them up in the app, tap on the buttons to get directions to them, and the rest happens automatically. I use and LOVE this feature (and my kids like it too)!