Apple Releases Updated iPod Touch, Shuffle, and Nano Models

Member of the AppleVis Editorial Team

Shiny Object Alert: New Apple iPods Are Here

Today, for the first time since 2012, Apple released updated versions of the iPod line of products. This includes updates to the Touch, Shuffle, and Nano, all of which now come in more colors than before. The Shuffle and Nano have no internal changes, just the new color options, but the Touch has several exciting updates under its hood which you need to know about.

As it always has, the Touch runs iOS and offers a very similar experience to the iPhone and iPad, but doesn't offer all the features of an iPhone. It is a perfect choice for someone's first iOS device, or someone looking for a way of offloading media and talking books from their iPhone, or anyone seeking a cheaper way to enjoy or get introduced to Apple's ecosystem. The Shuffle and Nano are great options for music, podcasts, talking books, and other media; use one of these tiny players in place of your iPhone, so you can have more room for apps on your phone and save your battery for the important things.

The iPod Touch 6

The model released today has several major updates over the previous generation, all of which bring the Touch in line with the rest of Apple's mobile lineup. There's a 64-bit A8 CPU with motion coprocessor, a larger storage option, an improved camera, and new color options. In essence, and with minor exceptions, the iPod Touch 6 is the guts of an iPhone 6 in a shiny shell. Note that this means you can run the Alex voice on it, have it track your steps taken or stairs climbed, use it for slow-motion video (up to 120FPS), and anything else the iPhone 6 can do--except, of course, for using a cellular network. The only big feature it lacks is a Touch ID sensor, so you'll still have to type in your passcode and passwords manually. Despite all this hardware, this iPod starts at just $199 for 16GB. Add $50 for 32GB, $100 for 64GB, or $200 for 128GB. At its most expensive, then, you get 128GB of storage for about the price of a 16GB iPad mini. $399 couldn't even buy you the base model iPhone 5S, let alone a 6. (Speaking of which, if your choice is between an on-contract 5S and the new iPod Touch, Apple Insider has a nice comparison of the two which might be useful.)

Who is this good for? As it sports an 8MP rear-facing camera and the same CPU found in the iPhone 6, the iPod Touch 6 is perfect for anyone wanting a way to use OCR apps but who doesn't have an iPhone. Students who need a more portable machine than the iPad schools often hand out, or who can't afford the high price tags of an iPad or iPhone, will find this a much more budget-friendly option. It can even run video magnifier apps, though the screen will still be rather small and those with low vision should inspect an iPod Touch in person before deciding to use one as a magnifier. If you've wanted to get ahold of a modern iOS device that still sports a four-inch screen (like the iPhone 5 or 5S screens), this is your chance; the iPod Touch 6 has a four-inch, 326 PPI display. If you're someone who beta tests iOS releases, this is a wonderful option, as you can have a modern iOS device that will handle anything iOS can throw at it, but still let you keep your primary phone or iPad running a stable version of Apple's mobile operating system.

It comes down to this: the iPod Touch 6 is a modern, powerful iOS device that starts at a price which is a great deal lower than the iPhone. Unlike the iPad or iPad Mini, which are themselves cheaper than an iPhone, this iPod is pocket-sized and sports a price so low that it will give you an even better value than the iPad--assuming screen size is not a concern to you. If you've been waiting for a cheap way to get a secondary iOS device, or even your very first one, this is a wonderful opportunity. Pick one up to: save the battery on your iPhone, keep as a test bed for beta iOS releases, carry with you when there's a chance it could be damaged (saving your more expensive iPhone), and more. Starting at just $200--less than half the cost of an iPad, and less than a third the cost of an iPhone 6--what are you waiting for?

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Submitted by Chris on Wednesday, July 15, 2015

This is fantastic news! As a fan of the smaller iOS devices, this may be my next iOS device as I don't like the larger screen of the iPhone 6 or 6 plus. I'm curious if this will work with GPS apps if I tether it to a phone with cellular data. This will most likely be a secondary device that goes with my 5S. Over all, this is awesome!

Submitted by Scott Davert on Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Member of the AppleVis Editorial Team

I'm wondering if it is the same size as the 5th generation? I'm willing to bet this is the final 4 inch screen device, so I'm very happy with this.
As to the question about GPS with tethering, it should work I'd think, as long as you have a data connection of some sort. What I'm not sure about is how much battery consumption would occur on your iPhone. It may not be worth it if that's your primary reason for purchasing.

Submitted by Chris on Wednesday, July 15, 2015

This is not my primary purpose for getting this. I'm getting this as a secondary iOS device. I just wonder if it would work with GPS apps like Blind Square if I later decide to tether it to an iPhone or Android phone. I don't see why it wouldn't work as long as it has a good data connection. I'll keep this on my list of devices to get at some point. This is a great option since I'm considering replacing my iPhone with an Android phone. I still want to keep one foot in iOS land and don't want a huge iPad.

As for the battery issue on the phone, could I use an external battery pack ot keep the phone charged? THat's something else I need to get.

Submitted by Diane on Wednesday, July 15, 2015

I was in my local Y this morning and realized I need a new portable device to use while on cardio machines to rescue me from the limmited tv selections. Had no idea where to start. Now, I know. It is smaller than my iPhone 6plus and does plenty of stuff.

Submitted by Sebby on Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Yep. Will be getting this as secondary device to replace my ageing and slow iPod Touch 5. I always appreciated the iPod Touch's distinctive low profile, efficient battery use and embodiment of iOS. I may even think about taking it with me for my upcoming holiday (together with a portable hotspot, naturally) rather than the iPhone.

Submitted by Esther on Wednesday, July 15, 2015

The camera on the new iPod touch sounds very good (8-megapixel, similar to the iPhone 5s), so I'm wondering how well the KNFB reader app would run on this device. The Apple Insider article says that the new iPod Touch lacks auto image stabilization, and I don't know how large a part that plays in the effectiveness of the KNFB reader app.

Submitted by Jessica Brown on Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Hi. Yes you can charge the iPod as well as any phone that uses a usb cord from an external battery pack. Some battery packs even have more then 1 usb port, so you can juice up both devices at once.

Submitted by Jessica Brown on Wednesday, July 15, 2015

I have been waiting for a 128 gb iPod for years. My music collection is growing and my iPod 64 gb will soon not be able to hold it all. I have also recently started using the direct to player app from the cnib to listen to audio books which from what I have seen so far can go anywhere between 90 and 300 mb each. Now if only I had the money to buy the thing. Problem is I am also trying to save up for an apple watch.

Submitted by Unregistered User (not verified) on Thursday, July 16, 2015

Hi all, wondering a couple things about the ipod touch.
I have been considering getting an ipad now for some time, but this new ipod touch might make me change my mind.
My primary question is this: Are there any apps that are usable on the iPhone that aren't usable on the ipod touch?
I thought, though I might be mistaken, that the ipod touch doesn't come with the native weather or stocks app.
I also use my iPhone for a lot of word processing and things, so it would be important to me that the device be able to run pages, numbers, Microsoft word, and or google docs.
I know the app store says it is compatible with these apps, but I'm just wondering if there are any apps it won't run.

Submitted by Chris on Thursday, July 16, 2015


The iPod Touch has all the functions of the iPhone. The only real differences are the lack of Touch ID, Apple Pay and a cellular connection. The Touch should run all iPhone apps perfectly.

Submitted by MarkSARCH on Thursday, July 16, 2015

Not really the iPod is not essentially an iPhone
Although I have to admit what this new generation include very good improvements {DO NOT FORGET} that each device include specific features.
The main difference are:
The iPhone is a cellular device and all the features who include with the data connection, the iPod is not a cellular device and the j only way to have access to the internet connection is via WiFi
Talking about associated cellular service several apps and features are specific for iPhone as:
on the same apple ecosystem running iOS8 or newer and Yosemite XX
the ability to have enable
Text message forwarding
and as well iPhone WiFi celular calls
the own apple apps will not have problems it all as someone asked above
GarageBand ETC
Don't get me wrong I'm not saying that iPod is a bad device but include less features comparing with iPhone.
Include GPS apps who most of the time require data connection to use Turn by turn and better GPS accurate iPod it does yes but having connected at WiFi hotspot or any hag connection.
over all good device specially for the price but nothing to do with iPhone.

Submitted by Piotr Machacz on Thursday, July 16, 2015

As someone who has both an iPad air and a 5th gen iPod touch, I can tell you that the iPod will be able to run 99% of iOS apps, with exception of apps that require GPS, compass or sell service, I'm mostly thinking of navigation apps like blind square. All iWork and Office apps do work, though if you want to do word processing just on the device itself with no keyboard or braille display connected I would go for an iPad where you have more room to do braille screen input and the various formatting controls are less crowded.

Submitted by Sebby on Thursday, July 16, 2015

In practice, iPod Touch will run most apps, which just need access to the network. Indeed, I feel iPod actually represents the iOS ecosystem rather better than iPhone itself: connected to a 3G mi-fi device, it comes very close indeed to being equivalent to an iPhone. There are a couple of apps which I think it should run but doesn't, like WhatsApp, but these are really the exception to the rule. You will get all the iPhone apps, but nothing requiring GPS service, and there's no Touch ID which, though a disappointment, is hardly a dealbreaker.

Submitted by Chris on Thursday, July 16, 2015

So, GPS apps like Blind Square won't work even if oyu connect the iPod to a mobile hotspot? Is it because the iPod doesn't have a GPS receiver?

Submitted by J.P. on Friday, July 17, 2015

I just received my new Touch from Apple. Running next to my 5th gen. Oh my Gosh, 8.4 on both. So much faster!! KNFB works much better. Camera definitely makes difference on the Touch. A5 processor just so outdated to run smoothly with new software

Submitted by MarkSARCH on Friday, July 17, 2015

Hi Chris and more on this conversation
I can't confirm this information but
according to apple under Tech Specs
on the new generation iPod Touch

^For iPod touch with Maps, the Maps application provides your approximate location using information based on your proximity to known Wi-Fi networks (when on and available). The more accurate the available information, the smaller the circle identifying your position on the map. The feature is not available in all areas. Known Wi-Fi networks are predominantly in urban areas. In order to provide your location, data is collected in a form that does not personally identify you. If you do not want such data collected, do not enable the feature. Not enabling the feature will not impact the functionality of your iPod touch.

That I suggest to you before buy it call at
just a small detail
The previous generation iPod 5
does not include GPS signal or internal GPS receiver you needed buy an external GPS.

Submitted by gallagher123123 on Friday, July 17, 2015

When I saw the new iPod touch in the Apple Store app, I got extremely excited. I currently use an iPod touch 5th generation as a primary IOS device. I have a feature phone that I am totally happy with. I ordered my new iPod touch, and will be going to pick it up tomorrow. I'm curious, has anyone tried using the Alex voice on the new iPod? If so, how well does it work? I am looking forward to having Alex on the device.
I am so glad apple decided to release this new iPod.

Submitted by Scott Davert on Friday, July 17, 2015

Member of the AppleVis Editorial Team

HI J.T. I'm supposed to get mine Monday. Are the 5 and 6 the same exact size? Thanks!

Submitted by Chris on Friday, July 17, 2015

From what a friend told me, the models are the exact same in terms of size and dimensions. THe iPod 6 apparently doesn't have the loop thing though.

Submitted by Daniel on Saturday, July 18, 2015

Hi all, I was just wondering. How much battery life would you get out of an iPod Touch? Is it basically the save as an Ipad Mini 2? Or would you possibly get less than the iPhone. Battery specks would be nice to know between iPhone, iPad and now this new iPod Touch.

Submitted by DPinWI on Saturday, July 18, 2015

I have been waiting so long for a new touch. I didn't want to go from my 4 to a 5, It wasn't enough of a spec bump, and, it was rather long in the tooth. This new one is a big jump.

I'm going to wait for a 128GB to hit the refurb store. I don't need it immediately, and I'm cheap.

Submitted by Sebby on Sunday, July 19, 2015

Slightly thicker. No lanyard.

Battery appears good despite clear improvement to responsiveness which makes sense given the processor is already too powerful; I'd be surprised they haven't underclocked it. Too early to say if it's actually an improvement over the iPod Touch 5th, or the iPhone 5S.

There is no NFC or, perhaps more disappointing, Touch ID. Apple really want you to have either an iPhone or an iPad, and that's very unfortunate. But it's still a clear win, even for a secondary device, although I'd have no trouble with using it as a primary device either.

Alex works, yes. No surprises here.

Speaker distorts. Best adjust levels appropriately. It's not a big speaker, but it's slightly louder than before.

Summary: nice upgrade to beauteous shiny object. Must have it. :)

Submitted by Orko on Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Along with my iPhone 5s, I have a 5th generation iPod Touch. My only complaint with my iPod is that with iOS 8, it's sometimes a bit laggy. This new iPod Touch sounds interesting, but since the jurry is still out on whether it's a real improvement over the current model, I'm going to wait and see what's being said about it in a month or two.

Alternately, I may just try to find a brand new iPhone 5s for my carrier, but with 64 GB instead of the 16 GB my curring iPhone has, then just move everything from my iPod to the iPhone and reduce my device count to one instead of two.

Submitted by Thomas Byskov Dalgaard on Tuesday, August 25, 2015


Did some research upon different models of both oPhones and iPod Touches and got the following question based on that:
It looks like the 6th generation of the iPod touch got a bigger processor, but the battery hasn't changed ever since 5th generation, it actually looks like the battery on an iPhone 4S where audio playback and videoplayback looks almost the same in terms of specs.
Do you actually get a better battery out of buying this when listening to audio or streaming audio/video?
I've actually thought of buying one, but if the battery isn't that much better I might save up to an iPhone 6 or a 6 Plus. On the iPhone 6 it states that audioplayback goes to 50 hours, so I was almost lacing an order until I did some more research. I hope some of you can prove me wrong on my speculations, because I really want one, but I need a great battery that can handle streaming and listening to audio better than my iPhone 4S and my 5C so please correct me if I'm mistaken.

Submitted by Sue Frey:Ward on Monday, September 7, 2015

I really like the article I have read, sounds really nice since I do own a ipod touch 5 g, was wondering if I were to get an ipod touch 6 does it matter which one I choose to have the alex voice, or do certain models such as the 32 or the 64 GB only have the voice. I was thinking of getting the 16 GB does that model have the Alex voice? I have heard demos of Alex and does not sound that bad and the price is not bad either. Any feedback would be excellent.

Submitted by MarkSARCH on Monday, September 7, 2015

Hi Sue Frey:Ward
My understanding is doesn't matter the capacity storage all models of the new iPod touch 6 generation will bring the option to run Alex voice just keep on mind who Alex voice is a huge file size around 868 MB that require download using Wifi.
according to apple the specs are the following:
iPod touch features an Apple-designed A8 chip built on 64-bit architecture. This desktop-class chip features GPU
All apple devices running 64 Bits are eligible to use Alex voice.
The specs from the apple web side is right below

Submitted by Brooke on Wednesday, September 9, 2015

With any device that's capable of running Alex, you have to download the voice data. Alex isn't the default voice for Voiceover when it's initially run on a device.