Price drops and simplified capacity options debuted on July 27, 2017.
At a Glance
- The iPod touch is Apple's only iPod running iOS, offering access to the App Store and the same 4-inch Retina display found on the company's iPhone 5 and 5s. The last hardware update for the iPod touch came in July 2015, and in July 2017 Apple cut prices and reduced the number of storage capacity options.
- $199 for 32 GB, $299 for 128 GB
- 4-inch Retina display
- A8 chip with M8 motion coprocessor
- 8-megapixel rear camera with slo-mo and burst modes
- Front-facing FaceTime HD camera
- Bluetooth 4.1
- Six color options
On July 27, 2017, Apple simplified its iPod touch lineup, reducing the previous four capacity options to just two at lower prices:32 GB for $199 and 128GB for $299.
Apple previously updated its iPod touch lineup on July 15, 2015, introducing new colors and significant internal upgrades to the same A8 chip used in the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, as well as an improved 8-megapixel rear camera. The iPod touch was available in 16, 32, 64, and 128 GB sizes priced at $199/$249/$299/$399, with all three models available in six different colors.
In More Detail
The current sixth-generation iPod touch maintains the same form factor introduced in September 2012 with the fifth generation of the family but includes significantly improved internals led by a jump from the A5 chip used in the previous generation to the A8 chip also used in the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus.
Other improvements included a new 8-megapixel rear camera (up from 5 megapixels) that includes new slo-mo and burst mode features, an M8 motion coprocessor for fitness tracking, faster 802.11ac Wi-Fi support, and Bluetooth 4.1. The iPod touch also comes with iOS 10 and support for Apple Music right out of the box.
The sixth-generation iPod touch includes a new storage tier at the 128 GB level, making it a more viable replacement for the iPod classic, which was discontinued in September 2014 after many years without an update. Initially priced at $399, the 128 GB iPod touch model dropped to $299 in July 2017. Apple also offers discounted sixth-generation iPod touch models through its online refurbished store.
Another change with the sixth-generation family is the removal of the "loop" wrist strap. The fifth-generation models included a spring-loaded button on the rear of the device concealing an attachment for a wrist strap to help secure the device against drops.
The sixth-generation iPod touch includes a 1,043 mAh battery that keeps the battery life at the same level of the fifth-generation iPod, despite a much more robust processor. It also includes 1GB of RAM, and its A8 processor clocks in at more than six times faster than the A5 in the previous-generation device.
While Apple's iPod lineup has seen declining sales in recent years as customers have increasingly shifted to smartphones for their media player and app needs, the iPod touch remains the flagship model in routinely accounting for over 50% of all iPod sales. The device is the only iPod model to offer compatibility with the App Store and has well over 100 million units since its 2007 debut.
With the discontinuation of the iPod shuffle and iPod nano in July 2017, it's clear the iPod family is on its last legs as users continue to shift toward smartphones for their mobile device consumption. The July 2017 iPod touch update saw price drops and a reduction in capacity options, which is typical as Apple phases products out. It's not out of the question to see an update to the iPod touch down the road, but at this point it seems unlikely as Apple doesn't appear to be investing much in the product line.