Back in September of 2010 I was giving readers the official public debut of the anti-iPod® screed that had been my stock-in-trade ever since the popular device was released in 2001. A dedication to disclosure of potential conflicts of interest suggests to me that I need to revisit this topic now that I’ve owned an iPod Touch® for the last year. Why did I capitulate, you may ask?
First of all, I am not a cell phone, much less “smart phone” user! I am a curmudgeon [in case you haven’t noticed] with no friends to talk to any way. I have no need for a land line phone except that it is required for DSL service at my home. I will never own a cell phone! What people pay for monthly service is astounding to me. I don’t get broadband via my cable company because I don’t watch television. I haven’t for two decades. I found TV had a really poor cost to benefit ratio and it interfered with the quality time better spent in the care and feeding of my music collection – so I pulled the plug in 1993 and have only regretted not doing so sooner. When I see glimpses of it in public places [a pet peeve] I am appalled by what I encounter. Furthermore, it is one less bill to eat into my shrinking entertainment dollar better spent on music! As a bonus, it better disconnects me from our hideous culture which I find repellent.
My earlier bash post outlined my problems with the iPod® as a music listening/entertainment device. So why did I buy an iPod Touch® last January? Well, sometimes I build websites and though I don’t have a smart phone, everyone else does, so coding and testing in a mobile browser environment became beyond mandatory by last year. The emulators for the desktop left much to be desired, so the iPod Touch® was my salvation. It’s an iPhone® with the phone part removed. The fact that it has connectivity only on [free] Wi-Fi makes it endearing to me and now I was able to test any sites I designed in a mobile environment for just the cost of the hardware. Sweet!
The other upside is that you get a lot of hyper-portable computing power in a ridiculously thin device for the $200 [business expense] that I paid for the thing. Web browsing, email, photography, video, calculator, note taking, etc. are all useful functions for me. It carries my music database/want list with me. The fact that WordPress has a mobile app where I can blog offline at my leisure is also a good way to while away time spent in any waiting rooms.
As far as music, in the last year I have bought exactly three downloads. These reside on the device as backups, basically. At two times in the last year, I recorded a disc in 24 bit uncompressed format [like I always do] to my computer and transferred it to the iPod Touch® in order to carefully listen to it during my lunch hour at work where I blogged about it. The act gave me a glimpse into the way most people use these devices and while it helped me blog on those two days without burning a disc, I can safely say that the hassle of making and transferring a playlist was everything I had looked askance at for years. And I was dealing with single tracks!
So to sum up: iPod Touch® = useful portable computing device with important business and personal functions to enhance my life. Not an entertainment device. And I have made peace with my iPod® without experiencing a shred of cognitive dissonance.
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