Tuesday, January 17, 2006

After tooling around with my wife's iPod and setting it up for use in her car, I have determined that wireless connectivity is a must-have for the next iPod. There is just no way around it, and Bluetooth is the way to go.

First, there are too many wires involved when using an iPod. The only way around this is by using a device with a docking station, which still requires "plugging in". Maybe being able to walk around with my computer has spoiled me, but the perpetual "tethering" of this so-called mobile device really irks me.

Second, Bluetooth is the ideal protocol. Apple already incorporates it into their computers. It is versatile enough to work with the full range of audio accessories and there are already plenty out there waiting for iPod- compatibility.

Third, stopping at audio accessories would be a shame. Headphones, car audio equipment, and wireless synching with the computer are obvious choices. But how about using your iPod as a remote control for iTunes? Skip through songs, adjust volume, watch videos, all on the computer, all through the iPod dial. Apple could sell a lot of iMacs with that option.

Even if you look only at the audio options, how cool would it be to walk around with music running through your Bluetooth headset, get in the car and switch the music to your car system without pausing your playlist, then drive home and transmit to your home stereo? That's mobility!

Bottom line: the iPod is excellent, but I'm not going to call it the killer mobile music player (or stand in line to get one) until I can cut the cords.

iPods Need Bluetooth


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