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6G iPod Speculation

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With all the hype over the upcoming iPhone, we probably shouldn't expect an announcement for the next iPod until MacWorld 2008. However, we can make many good bets about what's in store for the 6G model just by looking at all of the buzz currently traveling through the wire.

The 6G iPod will use Flash Storage.

This is almost a certainty. Not only are leaps and bounds being made in flash memory technology, but most importantly advancements are being made to reduce its cost. According to several sources in technology news, it is most likely that Apple will move iPod prototypes from HDD-based memory to NAND memory technology in 2007. We've already seen that it is viable with the iPhone, now it is just a matter of putting at least 30GB in the iPod body at a relatively low cost. Flash memory will not only greatly increase battery time but also avoid HDD failure and give the user the courage to jog with his or her iPod.

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Widescreen Video

This is not a certainty but is very likely. Starting in June, the iTunes store will be releasing most movies and TV shows in widescreen format to be compatible with the iPhone. It would be a major step back for the 6G iPod to not properly display the iTunes wares that you have already purchased. You can count on the Apple team thinking about the consumer's interests.

Wireless Headphones and Docking

Maybe this one is just wishful thinking but it would definitely make a statement about how far Apple intends to leave the competition behind. Why should free-spirited iPod users be restricted when listening to music? Long cords, short cords, skinny cords, fat cords, tangled cords, knotted cords, grimy cords -- how about no f-ing cords at all? Bluetooth technology is a possibility How about the ability to sync with your iTunes wirelessly, or to transmit your music to your car stereo through Bluetooth? If I can send music wirelessly from my desktop to my AppleTV, why shouldn't I be able to download this media onto my iPod at the same time? Now take the wireless music sharing technology of the Zune and move it a step further: how cool would it be if you could locally broadcast what you're listening to into another iPod that is close by?

Other Tidbits.

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The 6G iPod will have to break from the iPhone in many aspects. For instance, it obviously won't have phone capabilities -- why force iPod users to sign with Cingular anyway? The digital camera feature would be nice but is not likely given the camera features of the cell phones that already occupy our pockets. And finally, the touchscreen would be a nice feature to carry over to the iPod however it may ultimately add a great deal to its final cost. Bottom line: you're already going to kill the Blackberry among the trendy business crowd, now give the rest of us something less expensive to play with.