Yes you read the title correctly, I have an Apple iPod Nano. I recently won one with one of the affiliate programs I participate with and just recently got it in the mail. I thought I would give my impressions of the only Apple device I own.

First impressions were good. The device is small but the touch screen makes it easy to navigate around. My seven year old son even had no problems finding his way around on the little touch screen. Unfortunately my good first impression of the Apple iPod Nano did not last long.

I don’t use iTunes, I had hoped to die before ever having to use iTunes. I have my music collection all nicely sorted and managed on my Ubuntu desktop. I have regularly loaded my kids other MP3 players with music by simply hooking the devices up to my desktop and copying over the folders they wanted. It is simple, takes roughly 30 seconds and they are off listening to their new music. Not going to happen with the new iPod Nano.

Hooking it up to my Ubuntu desktop I was able to see the device but I quickly learned that the newest iPod Nano is not supported by my favourite music manager on Linux. Apparently the iPod Nano does not actually scan its internal storage for music but has some kind of database that needs to be updated and it can only be done at the moment by iTunes. Can you hear me swearing yet? Trust me I was.

I can live with the fact that I have to connect the device to a computer to copy music and photos on to it, but being forced to use iTunes was almost to much. I love my son, however, who decided this new device was now his, so I booted up my Windows virtual machine, downloaded iTunes and began the installation. After over an hour it had finally finished installing and scanning all the music and I was able to copy music on to the iPod. That went fairly smoothly. iTunes is a bloated piece of crap but at least it worked. I was able to get the few kids albums he wanted onto the device and some photos.

I gave it to my son and he gladly went off and listened to some music. A little while later he came back to me and asked how he could watch the latest movie I had loaded onto his other MP3 player on the new one. I told him he couldn’t because it could not play videos. He then decided I could have the iPod Nano back and went and watched the movie on his older $25.00 MP3 player.

If you use iTunes to manage your music I guess using an iPod is not a large step. If you happen to already have your music collection organizied the way you like it and have no need to ever use iTunes never buy an iPod Nano. I have since loaded it with all the music the kids like and keep it in the car to hook up to the car stereo. This way I don’t have to put more music on it very often.

It is unfortunate that Apple feels they have to lock people into using iTunes to be able to do something as simple as putting music on a simple MP3 player. A task that should have taken me 30 seconds to do with a $25.00 MP3 player took me close to 2 hours initially with the iPod Nano.

Using the iPod Nano made me appreciate wirelessly connecting my Android devices to my network and loading music. It is so much easier and better than how Apple does it. Do iPhones have to connect to a computer to load music? If they do, what a waste of time.

I would never have bought it but winning it was nice and it confirmed to me why I never bought any kind of iPod in the past.

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