The iPad Mini is about Killing the iPod Touch

The iPod touch has always been Apple’s odd model out. More than an iPod yet significantly less than than an iPhone.

Three years ago, I bought an iPod touch because I wanted the iOS experience without being tied to AT&T. These days the iPhone is available on multiple carriers and the iPod touch finally has a camera.

In between times, Apple didn’t know if the iPod touch was “training wheels for the iPhone” a competitor to the Sony Playstation Portable or just a colorful camera that can play music.

Hardly compelling compared to the iPad’s positioning of transformative convenience.

Hell, this isn’t even compelling against multi-touch iPod nano that’s half the size and half the price.

Apple’s ~8″ iPad mini debuted at $30 more than the 4″ iPod touch. Twice the screen size and half the storage space for just over the $300 price point. For an additional charge, a persistent cellular broadband connection is available through AT&T, Sprint, and Verizon.

No such broadband option exists for the iPod touch. Making the iPod touch once again the odd model out.

Historically, Apple’s responses to competitors has always been strategic – not direct and obvious. Additionally, they’ve always been comfortable killing off popular products for the sake of an easy-to-understand product line. For all these reasons, the iPad mini isn’t about competing directly with the Kindle Fire or Nexus 7 – it’s about quietly killing off the albatross of the iOS family – the iPod touch.

This time next year, the iPod nano will have a camera and the iPod touch won’t exist.

7 thoughts on “The iPad Mini is about Killing the iPod Touch

  1. I agree. As much as I love my 32GB iPod Touch, I want to replace it with a 32GB iPad Mini. It’s a no brainer…

  2. This is a unique way of seeing this. My friend Andy said the problem is the pricing. That things like the Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire altered the price point. Now, it makes NO sense to buy a touch. Unless the task is the gym, running, and that sort of thing.

    If it is a computing device, it seems trapped by dollars, not function so much.

    If the ipad mini is priced out of real contention for me I think. The Nexus 7 is a little bit higher functioning than the Kindle Fire which feels useless to me (and I own one).

    I think at some point we have to see the whole picture, what is in the house. Phone in hand, ipad in bag, apple tv on the tv, and macbook pro for computing?

  3. Or else the touch will be rebranded as the iPad nano.

    I love my iPod touch, it’s pocket-sized without the ridiculous price/contractual obligations of the iPhone. (I use a dumbphone that costs <$100/yr as pay-as-you-go.) Only Wifi, but that suits me fine.

  4. I’m not so sure. Seems like if this was the case, Apple wouldn’t have bothered to introduce the newest iPod Touch. The iPad Mini and the iPod Touch, I believe, will appeal to different people. Kids especially appear to like the iPod touch for portable gaming. Easier to pocket one of those and go than the Mini.

    Who knows? We’ll all find out in about a year.

  5. Interesting thesis. Time will tell if you’re right. Myself, I’m not so sure the iPod touch will be gone in a year from now. At the moment it represents 60% of the iPod sales, so basically you are saying that iPod will be history in a year.

  6. I’m not so sure. I know what you mean about it being the “odd one out”, but a lot of people are big fans of the touch and it still has its uses.

    It’s still more portable then the new iPad mini.

    Besides, Apple has sold 46.5 million of these devices so far, and I don’t think they will be eliminating it any time soon.

    That said, I can be wrong 🙂

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