Skip to main content

Why you want the new iPod touch

iPod touch has often been considered the gateway to the App Store—the least expensive way possible to get into Apple's ecosystem and run iOS apps. That remains as true today as it's always been, but with the new iPod touch 6 there's also a lot more you can do. Yes, it remains the perfect first device for kids, but now it's also become the perfect secondary device for people of all ages.

Couch controller

It's the age of automation and that means almost anything and everything in your home can be controlled by an iOS device. Sure, that can be your iPhone, but if you want something that your whole family can use—including guests—without also having access to all your personal information, an iPod touch is a great alternative.

It can run all the home automation apps—including the new Apple Siri-powered HomeKit compatible ones, and it can live on your couch or coffee table as easily as any outdated hardware remote. Best of all in most cases you can sync settings between devices, so it's always up to date and ready to use.

Philips Hue, Sonos, Apple TV, ChomeCast, and many major TV, set top box, media players, and more all have apps ready to use. Simply check the App Store for your brand!

Pocket camera

The new 4.7- and 5.5-inch screens on the iPhones 6 are fantastic for productivity and creativity, but they're nowhere nearly as pocketable as the 4-inch iPhones of old. The 4-inch iPod touch, however, still is. Not only that, the iPod touch thinner and lighter than any full-on phone radio would allow. Add to that a new 8 megapixel sensor and Apple A8-powerered image processor, and you have pretty much the perfect connected camera that can fit in any pocket.

With iCloud Photo Library—or online access to Dropbox, OneDrive, Google Drive, Flickr, and more—you can optimize storage and keep all your pictures and videos safe on the cloud. With a bevy of editors, you can make every picture look just the way you want, and with iMovie, you can assemble videos and create trailers right from the iPod touch.

Then, whenever you're on Wi-Fi, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, and even iMessage sharing is just a few taps away.

Music player

The iPod has always been about music and now that includes access to Apple Music and streaming access to not only most of the iTunes catalog, but offline access as well. You can make as many playlists as you like and then download them to keep on your iPod touch when you're away from Wi-Fi.

Because the iPod touch is so small and light, it's easy to jog with or otherwise workout with, and easy to travel with. It's even got an Apple M8 Motion co-processor and the Health app so you can track and keep track of your activity.

Pair it with headphones and it's just for you. Pair it with wireless speakers, and it can fill the whole house. Thanks to Up Next, or do some of the great DJ apps on the App Store, and the iPod touch can even be the center of your party.

Gaming on the go

The new iPod touch comes with an Apple A8 system-on-a-chip. That not only includes Apple's latest generation Typhoon processor, but Rogue series 6 graphics engines. Put Apple's Metal framework on top of that, and, yeah—it's a real screamer.

What's more, with an iPod touch, you don't have to worry about phone calls interrupting you. You can even leave all notifications off and just enjoy some dedicated, disconnected time with your games.

You can even run full-on Unreal for hours in the car, on the bus or plane, or just on the couch without worrying about running down your phone's battery.

Developer device

iOS 9 is now in both developer and public beta—check out our ultimate guide—and that means there's a lot of apps being built, updated, and tested. Since putting betas on your primary device can be risky, the iPod touch has always been the secondary device of choice.

If you've got a whole group—like Apple Camp for Girls—it's an affordable way to get them all onto iOS. If you're by yourself or part of a small team, it's incredibly inexpensive.

Since the new iPod touch has been updated with a 64-bit Apple A8 chipset, it's now on the same platform as the iPhones 6 and iPad Air 2, making it an even better developer and tester device than ever.

And more!

Looking for more great reasons to add an iPod touch to your lineup? With Continuity, you can take and make phone calls with your on your iPod touch as well, making it a handy extension to keep around the house or office. If you've found other great uses for the iPod touch, let me know in the comments!

Rene Ritchie
Rene Ritchie

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.

28 Comments
  • I agree with your points mentioned above. If I didn't have a iPad Mini 1 I would get one. Money is tight though and I'm holding out for now to budget for hopefully a new Apple TV soon to be released in the fall. I know the Touch is more powerful than my Mini but for my needs I'm still ok for now. Glad the Touch has been updated finally though and I hope that helps sales. Until my Mini becomes less useful, I think I don't have a need for a Touch personally.
  • Did Apple pay you for that ad Rene? Sent from the iMore App
  • Did Google pay you to make this comment Ben?
  • No, but Microsoft paid me to tell you both of these options suck and you should hop on the majesty known as Windows 10 Posted via the iMore App for Android
  • I like this. Haha. But I don't like what I'm having on my Lumia 920 with Windows 10 insider preview... it's very rough experience. I prefer to go back to WP8.1 if I can. Posted from my Samsung Galaxy S6
  • Ha ha I'm sold. Sent from the iMore App
  • It's a fair observation. It sounded like a sales pitch/advert. Sent from the iMore App
  • So very valid reasons especially the Home & developer stuff. From experience I'd always choose the iPad Mini over the iPod Touch for kids (I have 2 kids both with iPad Mini & I & they wouldn't even consider swapping for a Touch) but I also have an iPod touch which acts as the home music provider through Apple Music or other internet radio apps & that's always connected to a Bluetooth speaker. So there are still some very important uses for the iPod Touch I just feel they are pretty expensive especially when there's the iPad mini available so I'd almost always buy one second hand.
  • Easy answer --- unless you are a kid with no need for a phone --- you should not. All 3 new iPods are disappointing. The smaller ones with no access to Apple Music - bummer. If they had merged the Nano and Touch (FM Radio plus the Touch, with a bit better camera), maybe - but otherwise just buy a phone (5S, 6, etc).
  • My old clip on nano died after a run in the rain last year. I started to use my old pre-iphone iPod touch for running, and though a bit bigger it was much more convenient in terms of loading podasts, audio books and music. I was waiting for an update to the nano, but that didn't happen, and my touch is in need of a new battery. My new iPhone 6+ is way to big for running. The updated touch is attractive for all the reasons Rene lists. I wish it were even smaller, but have learned to live with the larger than nano size and consider the processor and new camera as major bonuses. And Apple music is becoming a must for music (re) discovery. The ease of loading new curated playlists for runs and other activities where the phone is too big makes the new touch compelling. This is not hypothetical. A new blue touch came Saturday. Sent from the iMore App
  • Its a chance to enjoy iOS ecosystem + good camera + A8/M8 at better price when cannot afford to buy the giant. I can have this iPod along with my budget device its a great deal.
    As said in WWDC'15, with Xcode 7 no more membership needed to run apps in iOS device. I hope if this is applicable to new iPod then its KILLER.
  • I love ipods, they were my introduction to the Apple world, but I have to say: wow! That's one expensive device for a "couch control" don't you think? Sent from the iMore App
  • I want an iPod touch because it is the version of an iPhone can you please give me that iPhone 5S
  • My old iPod Touch had a battery issue so when I walked in the genius bar said oh this is a known issue and replaced it with a same model of that iPod Touch. Can't use it in the office because no wifi but no complaints. Now I can wait till I decide about the new model.
  • With the 128GB Touch we can all leave our iPhones' SSDs almost untouched by transferring all that follows: - Entire music library
    - Large game apps (upwards 500 MB)
    - Videos
    - Audiobooks
    - Podcasts
    - Photos On the phones, we can now keep smaller data files: - Apps under 300 MB
    - PDF documents
    - Text documents
    - eBooks Leaving the phone at the car, securely locked from the view of thiefs, while having the Touch for doing excercise sounds awesome. A phone does the trick, for sure, but the 4" form factor of the Touch is just supreme for excericse. If you just walking, today there are large enouh man purses to carry such electronics. Of course, we'd still need to carry two devices around, but at least battery cycles become less frequent on the more important device which is the phone. Who cares? Both devices are super light today. The only single disadvantage is lack of Touch ID. Of course, in a few years everything will be on our.... watches.
  • Id rather buy a 128 GB PHONE OR 256 GB (soon) than buy an iPod touch for $400 Sent from the iMore App
  • I agree with most of Rene's reasons. However, for me, I travel a great deal and use my old iPod Touch on the plane for music to save the battery of my iPhone 6 when the plan lands. Simple reason but my system works for me.
  • "Yes, it remains the perfect first device for kids ..." Ummm ... no it isn't. If you are talking the Apple ecosystem, the iPad Mini is hands down. TECHNICALLY the starting price is $249 and that is only $50 more, but truthfully you can get one for $199 - new and not refurbished - from a reputable seller with very little trouble at all. A bigger device (better for small hands) and more versatile too. And that is presuming that a $200 device should be a kiddie purchase to begin with. When over in the Android realm you have: A) phones and tablets just as capable as the iPod Touch for as little as $50
    B) devices that are actually designed and customized for children for as little as $100 The second category is key. You have things like the Nabi DreamTab, the the Fire HD Kids Edition, and the Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 for kids. All have rugged enclosures (for kids who drop and scratch things), have handles or chamfered exteriors (easier for small hands to grab and hold) and are pre-loaded with content just for kids, including filters to block adult content. (And the latter can be done on any Android device BTW as Android allows multiple user accounts on a device. So you can create one account for the kids and "lock it down" while still retaining your own accounts on the device for anything and everything.) But in short: the iPad Mini is the perfect first iOS device for kids. And there are a host of good Android devices inherently better for kids because they are A) cheaper and B) designed for kids in the first place. Honestly, the iPod is a device that is slowly being made redundant anyway. Right now the only justification for owning one is simply liking the things. Which is, of course, a good enough reason to buy one. But even the portability (for exercise and such) features have been superseded by the Apple Watch. (Too bad the Apple Watch doesn't start at $199 or $249 like the iPod and iPad but that is another story for another day.) Like the Sony Walkman, it was an excellent device in its time, but that time is passed. While they will continue to sell it (because it sells more than the Apple TV and the Apple Watch, and likely at higher margins than both) don't expect Apple to revisit this device with another refresh, and don't be surprised when it is quietly dropped from company reports and the company website in a couple of years.
  • The iPod touch us a fantastic portable computer. With a Bluetooth keyboard and either hdmi adapter or Apple TV it an be connected to a TV and used as a computer. It is a great business tool for taking documents and presentations on the road. Ios has some great business apps including the iwork apps and ms office apps. The size makes it perfect fit taking photos and videos too. It is a very good but under used business tool. Posted via the iMore App for Android
  • I use an iPod touch to stream media to my AppleTV, and while I could certainly use my phone, I prefer to keep the phone free for things like phone calls, messaging and the like. The iPod also allows guests to access my media library and stream to the TV (honestly not a fan of handing over my phone). My old iPod is getting a little long in the tooth (old and slow) and starting to fall apart, so it's a worthwhile replacement.
  • No I definitely don't want it. The screen is too small, no Apple pay, no fingerprint scanner. Better suited for a first iOS device Sent from the iMore App
  • I think "Should you get an iPad mini or the new iPod touch" article and a former Best Buy employee giving his thoughts on iPod sales data are very telling. iPod touch primarily appeals to young and old people without smartphone. Even to those, iPads, particularly iPad mini, has largely replaced iPod touch. IMO, iPod touch would be much more appealing if it was available with cellular data and 4.7-inch screen. Most kids and many adults don't make much phone calls anymore, but having a constant Internet connectivity could make it a very compelling alternative to iPhone c-series.
  • I've got an iPhone, so no real need to carry another comparably sized device.
    What i did love was the iPod nano 7th generation, because it was the perfect
    size & much easier to control my music, by way of either screen or the hard
    touch controls on it's side.
    My complaint is that my beloved nano only got a couple color update options,
    yet no Apple music or wifi option. Regardless, i do think the iPod touch would be a better choice for music/camera
    lovers, on the fence between an iPad mini or a touch.
    Portability is king!
  • I don't want iPod Touch, I have my iPhone :) Sent from the iMore App
  • you want a music player but not a smart phone. Like my father.
    You don't want to pay for a cell plan.
    you want something that fits in your pocket unlike ipad mini.
    Maybe the entire use of the devices is to be a music player, say to sit on bedroom feed music to a bluetooth speaker.
  • I wish they'd bring back the classic. I want an iPod to do one thing which is play music. I don't need all those bells and whistles taking up HD space.
  • Me too... i want a revamped version of the iPod classic, faster processor and same 160gb memory... i can literally store all my music on that iPod.
  • Two reasons not to buy: 1. No larger size screen options. 2. Continued lack of LTE. And if you need a third, no Touch ID. I do applaud Apple for not going back a generation on processors like they did with the last refresh though the A7 is certainly no slouch and I have yet to run into anything that the A8 handles better in the real world. However, with and assumed A9 only a couple of months away they kinda did go last gen.