Apple Computer Inc Informative - iPod Review - Great device, not so great everything else.
ILLINOIS -- I thought I would write to inform consumers about the much talked about video ipod. I recently made the big purchase and was very surprised to see what came in the box, or shall I say what didn't come in the box. For $399, you would think they would throw in a power cord to charge the thing! It only comes standard with a USB cable that lets you charge the device through your computer. But your computer must be ON to do this, and if you are anywhere else without your computer, you are out of luck! They conveniently sell a power cord charger for $30 on their website. Gee, how nice of them.
So that is my first gripe. Second is the software. iTunes is the software package that comes with the ipod for managing and downloading videos, music, pictures, podcasts, etc to your player. Well it wouldn't install with the CD that came with the player, I had to download the latest version from their website. Even then, the iTunes software constantly hangs (which requires a CTRL-ALT-DEL to kill off the non-responding application).
My third and final gripe is the lack of "compatibility" the device offers. Basically everything except the headphone jack is proprietary. My old player I could plug any firewire or USB cable into to transfer files to and from. And I didn't even need any software to move files back and forth. The ipod, on the other hand, requires the use of a special "ipod" USB cable. The ipod only works with iTunes software, meaning you cannot access your files on the device in any other way unless you have the software. Nor can you share (heaven forbid) your files since it apparently would not allow me to connect to the device from my second computer. I don't know for sure if this was by design, or just bad software, since it is hard to tell with so many glitches.
With that off my chest, on to the good. The ipod is pretty darn cool. It has great storage, 60GB, and it not only plays music well, but you can store your entire digital photo library and setup playlists to play while you watch a show of your photos. The video feature is just plain cool. I downloaded an episode of "The Office" (ABC show) and it looked great on the small screen. They offer music videos, TV shows, podcasts and more in the video format. Some is free, most cost a small fee. A 30 minute TV show costs $1.99, same for a music video.
Amazingly, after all the negatives I went through with this little device, I am still very happy with it because it is just so damn cool.
My advice to potential buyers... be aware of its limitations and do some research on other competing models before you make the plunge.