The iPod Video Player: Another New Innovation To An Already Innovative Device

The iPod is a portable digital media player designed and manufactured by Apple Computers. The standard iPod model stores media on a built in hard drive while the smaller iPod Shuffle and iPod nano uses flash memory. The iPod has became the world’s best selling digital audio player since its launch in 2001.

An IPod can play MP3, WAV, AAC/M4A, Protected AAC, AIFF, Audible audio book and Apple Lossless audio file formats. The fifth generation iPod can now play m4v and mp4 video files. With this addition, the iPod has become a complete multimedia player.

Apple designed the iPod to work with the iTunes media library software, which allows users to manage the music libraries on their computer and on their iPod. To add up to the excitement of its feature, users may also set a rating of up to five stars on any song. This will allow them to remember which ones they like or which ones have the best quality.

It also features some games for example the Parachute wherein the player controls a turret and attempts to shoot down paratroopers and the helicopters that released them. This game is similar to Apple II version of the game Sabotage by Mark Allen. Another is the solitaire, a simple card game that resembles the Klondike solitaire card game. There is also the Music Quiz, The game plays a portion of a random song and the player must identify it form the list of five. The faster the player had identified the song, the higher his score will be. No record is kept of the score and there is no limit to the amount of songs played. This is now possible because of the capabilities of the fifth generation of iPod to play videos.

For the meantime, the iPod video could only support MP4 and Mpeg4 video formats. So if you want to load videos to your iPod, you need to convert the videos first if they are not in the supported format yet. This is not a problem since there are many video converters and softwares available in the internet for download to do the job.

But with Apple’s dedication to keep the number one spot in the iPod’s segment in the market, it will be sure that the soon enough more innovations will be produced to allow more file formats to be played.

Now you will be able to share your videos and movies with many people easier than ever. You can also transfer files and videos from your office computer to your home computer and vice versa or to any computer.

You can bring your favorite music videos of your favorite artists anytime and anywhere. You can also load your favorite movies or your home movies as well. Take it with you to family reunions, parties and meeting up with long lost friends.

Need to have a bigger view? You can plug it into a television and see it in a bigger screen. With the right accessories, you can elevate the performance and capabilities of your iPod video. Hook it up with a special AV cable to your TV for a bigger view or you can hook it up in your car for battery charging and using the stereo system of your car. To listen to the audio of your movies better, you can plug them as well to a portable iPod speaker. Not only one person would be able to listen to the audio of your videos. The iPod video, a new evolution for Apples premiere product.

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The evolution of iPods � from their appearance to the iPod video

The newest and most popular innovation in iPod technology is, for sure, the iPod video. Still, getting to this innovative device is just the result of a long research through the history of the iPod making.

The appearance of the iPod was owed to an increased marketing request: the lack of quality of the digital music players was noticeable to the interested consumers, as opposed to the growing number of digital devices, such as cameras, camcorders and organizers. Due to this fact, the Apple industries established a team of qualified engineers in order to develop the mechanism and design of the soon to be first iPod, which resulted in less than a year of technical and practical research. The launching of the new and exiting product was held on the 23rd of October 2001 and soon, the market embraced the new product. The evolution from the first iPod, which was revealed almost 5 years ago, till the iPod video reveals the intense and permanent research of the specialized engineers. The next significant step in the evolution of this device was the release of the 2 versions iPod, for both Mac and Windows users, which highly increased the sales and the number of potential customers. Actually, the iPod sold at such a high rate, that the permanent improvement of the product, in order to maintain the leading position on the market, was a necessary request (the selling rate recorded over 42 million units since the release of the product).

In 2005, the new and better iPod was revealed, when celebrating the 4th generation of these devices; the new model introduced, for the first time, the color screen. In the spring of 2006, the Samsung company announced that they were about to provide the media processor for a new iPod model, an improved version of the Apple’s device. Soon after, the 5th generation of iPods introduced the iPod video, meaning it has video playback capacities, video playing and better organization features. The launching was celebrated together with the innovative new models of iPods: the iPod nano, with color screen and the iPod shuffle, which were the best sellers of 2005.

The 5th generation of the iPod was about to reveal many new and exiting features of the small device, all under the slogan One more thing… Basically, the iPod video or the video iPod was available on the market in both 30 GB and 60 GB capacity models, had ability to play both MPEG-4 and H.264and much higher resolution, up to 480/480. Having a 16-bit color screen and being able to display all kinds of videos on a TV set, the new product was a market hit since its appearance. Regarding the design, the new iPod comes, as the previous iPod (the nano model of the 4th generation) in 2 colors, white and black, but it has a multitude of applications and improved features: World Clock, Stopwatch, and Screen Lock applications, a smaller earphone, a thin slipcase, AC adapter and FireWire cable. Regarding the dimensions, the new iPod is 4.1 x 2.4 x 0.43′inches for the 30′GB version and 4.1 x 2.4 x 0.55′inches for the 60′GB version (which, in the case of the new model, are marketed at the same price). The screen size was modified to 2.5′inches (6.35′cm) diagonally, 0.5′inches (12.7′mm), meaning that the video iPod screen is larger than the previous one. Even more, the product is thinner than the last model, iPod nano, and the battery life increased from 16 hours to 20 hours. Still, being a video device, watching movies reduces the life of the battery to around 2 to 3 hours.

With an exiting and evolving history, the iPod manages to be one of the most innovative products on the digital devices` market, with millions of customers all around the world and increasing sells.

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Capabilities of the new iPod video

The capabilities of the new iPod video continue the developing process of the old capabilities ‘ software, hardware and compatibility with other devices.

Concerning the software, it is well-known that the iPod in general and the iPod video in particular play MP3, audible audio book, WAV, M4A/AAC, protected AAC, AIFF and Apple Lossless audio file formats. Since the 5th generation iPods there is another possibility of playing m4v and mp4 MPEG-4 video file formats. Only non copy-protected WMA files may be copied to an iPod. Other formats are not possible to be played by the iPod and this is the case of FLAC and Ogg Vorbis formats.

Besides, the iPods are especially designed for matching the iTunes media library software. This online music store appeared in 2003 and it sells songs and it was thought exclusively for the iPod users and not for other portable music players. This may have contributed to the success both the iPods and the iTunes music store and to the great development and improvements of the iPod’s capabilities.

The software of the new iPod video has new features ‘ personalized recommendations and video content that can be played on a Pc or transferred to the iPod. The software was upgraded to Version 6, fact that represents a development and a distinct achievement.

Concerning the hardware of the iPods one may say that the first generation iPods were recharged only through FireWire with the help of a small power adapter. The 4th generation iPods may have been charged over USB. The 5th generation iPod may be charged with the help of a dock connector allowing the FireWire cable to be plugged in for the recharge.

Compatibility of the iPods with Windows is the idea of Apple, realized in 2002, fact that contributed to the creation of a Windows version of iTunes in 2003. The iPods could be made to be compatible with a Macintosh and there is also an iPodLinux project.

Some additional features may be mentioned while speaking about the iPods in general and iPod video in particular. The iPods can display text files, fact which is very useful. There are also PDA calendars, some games that were interesting several years ago but they seem outdated nowadays. The games available on almost every iPod except the iPod shuffle are brick, parachute, solitaire, music quiz. The most interesting game is the music quiz, playing some fragments of some songs and waiting the user to identify the song from a list. The disadvantage of this game is that it uses a lot of battery power.

All these capabilities seem to be improved in the case of the new iPod video except the creation of other games or the introduction of new ones. This may be seen as a disadvantage, but if taking into account the fact that it is a case of a portable music player this aspect does not have such a great importance.

The innovation is of course the video capability, although the main features of the new iPod stress on great improvements in the image and sound quality. The video image is surprisingly smooth and in this way may replace the skeptical attitudes with joyful exclamations.

Although it is not the first attempt of bringing video on a portable handheld device, this achievement seems to be the most successful. This success is due to a lot of required work and complicated changes in the software and hardware as well. In a way or another, Apple seems to be the champion in creating special portable devices and maybe some other steps will be taken in the development of the small video portable devices. In this way, maybe a special compatibility with more devices may be developed, ensuring other periods of great success. Other online stores may appear and develop in the tradition of the iTunes music store. Due to iPods from the Apple Company legal content of the downloaded and paid music or TV shows, episodes or other materials is ensured.

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