Apple releases iPod nano, Motorola phone featuring iTunes

When Apple announced that it would be revealing a new product at a San Francisco conference on Sept. 7, rumors started about what new product they could be announcing. When the conference was over, Apple had unveiled not one, but two new products—the ROKR E1 cellular phone and the iPod nano. The ROKR phone was created with Motorola, while the iPod nano was created as a replacement for the iPod minis.

The ROKR E1 phone is the first cell phone to be compatible with Apple’s iTunes program and music store. The phone is being offered exclusively through Cingular Wireless and retails for $249.99 (with a two-year contract).

According to Apple CEO Steve Jobs, “The way we think of this phone is, it’s really an iPod shuffle on your phone.”

Though, unlike the iPod shuffle, the ROKR E1 will have a display screen, similar to screens on other iPods and other Motorola cellular phones.

ROKR E1 users can connect the phone to their computer using a USB 2.0 cable and put up to one hundred songs on it. When not talking on the phone users can use it as an MP3 player and play music either out loud or on headphones. Whenever there is an incoming call, the music will automatically pause.

The second new product Apple revealed was the iPod nano. This new iPod is designed to replace Apple’s very popular line of iPod minis. The iPod nano is half the size of the original iPod mini and is thinner than a number two pencil, making it 80% smaller than the original iPod.

Apple was able to make the iPod nano smaller by switching from a hard disk drive to flash memory. Still, despite the obvious advantages to these new iPods, Steve Jobs called this a “pretty bold” move for Apple.

The iPod nano comes in black or white, features a color screen and supports photos which were previously only available on larger models of iPods.

Besides being smaller, the iPod nano has some new features. It’s available in two different sizes — the 2GB version, which retails for $199 and holds 500 songs, or the 4GB version, which costs $249 and holds 1,000 songs. In addition to having music and photo capabilities, it can be used as a stopwatch or a lap timer as well.