Sunday, 4 May 2008
iPod Shuffle with Multi-Touch
OK, I confess. I’m bored with the current Apple rumor hegemony. Whilst I have to concede that everything is pointing towards a thick black plastic 3G iPhone, I don’t have to like it. (And for the record, those photos of the 3G iPhone doing the rounds have got to be fake - it’s hard to imagine Apple ever producing something so... well... Samsungy.)
So to take my mind off all things thick and plasticy, Mac Predictions has instead turned its attentions to the iPod Shuffle. It seems that the recent drop in price has done the trick in giving a boost to the Shuffle’s flagging sales, but at the obvious expense of Apple’s famously high margins.
There are, of course, two reasons why someone might choose a Shuffle - its price, and its size. For those who are not price sensitive, but are still drawn to the Shuffle’s diminutive form factor, there’s currently a gap in the market - especially since the new Nano has sneakily increased in size. This got Mac Predictions to thinking about what might be done to a Shuffle by adding a screen and Multi-Touch. At first this just seemed like a daft combination, until an idea so awsome, so simple, so... well, Appley, came along.
The screen is square shaped - perfect for album art, which is all it ever shows. The device is a little larger than the current shuffle, and it only has two buttons on the bottom - On/Off and Shuffle. Each time the Shuffle goes from one track to the next, it uses a neat “Push” transition (illustrated) to change album art. In shuffle mode, it transitions quickly between multiple album covers, moving in different directions to suggest shuffling. Swiping your finger from left to right across the screen cues the next track, and in the other direction it goes back to the previous track. Swiping your finger up and down controls the volume. Tapping on the screen toggles between pause and play. It’s that simple.
I love this idea so much - I hope that Apple is already working on it, or reads this blog and develops the idea, because I want to buy one!