Hands on with the Video iPod

So it was the Video iPod after all. Or, to be precise, the new iPod - an iPod that just happens to play videos. You already know the specs (if you do

So it was the Video iPod after all. Or, to be precise, the new iPod - an iPod that just happens to play videos.

You already know the specs (if you don't, click here), so here are our first impressions after playing with the latest Pod at the BBC Television Centre:

  • It's small. Smaller than you'd think, in fact. Despite being a touch wider than its predecessor to accomodate the screen, it's almost as thin as the Nano - making it a genuinely pocket-friendly and making Archos and Creative's offerings look lardy.

  • The screen's superb. Yes, it's not much bigger than the screen on some phones. The clarity and level of detail packed into its 2.5 inches, however, is superb. You wouldn't want to watch a full-length movie on it, but it's a doozy for watching a quick music video or a TV show.
  • The 2 hour video battery on the 30GB model is poor, but 14 hours isn't outrageously bad for music playback. The short video playback figure's definitely a sign of intent - that this a player designed for short video bursts, not full movie-viewing.
  • Let's hope some UK TV shows become available soon. Although the European launch was held at the Beeb, the first ready-to-download TV shows will only be available in the US from Disney and ABC. Come on, Apple - let's have Little Britain playing on our Pods.
  • £1.89 for a UK music video is a rip-off. If iPod fans in the US are paying $1.99, why are we paying nearly twice the amount? No amount of talk about VAT can convince us on this one.
  • The music vids might be expensive but £220 for 30GB and £300 for 60GB model is - if the new iPod stands up to our testing - extremely good value.

We'll have more for you on the new iPods in December's issue of Stuff, out 2nd November.

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