Many sites have published links to a video with the alleged new interface for the 6G video iPod (here is MacDailyNews’). The video doesn’t necessarily remind one of the iPhone, though clearly elements have been borrowed.
I’ve gone on record stating the 6G iPod would have the iPod interface from the iPhone, or something very close (for example, the iPod might add a virtual scroll wheel for games).
What does Apple gain by making the interfaces different? Don’t they just open the door to iPhone or iPod owners thinking they got the “lesser” interface? In that case I believe the iPod must have the “better” one (after all, it’s the dedicated media device), but then what would that say about the iPhone? According to Jobs it’s “The greatest iPod we’ve ever made,” but it lasted only a few months?
I like the iPhone music interface, and while I feel that with 80GB instead of eight some sort of search is mandatory, I otherwise prefer it to the existing 5.5G iPod.
I believe the new iPod is coming relatively soon, despite some reports of a January release. They need the 6G in plenty of time for Christmas, so I don’t see how it could be later than October. Rumors that it will be sooner seem believable to me. This rumored interface, however, I’m questioning.
Of course, guessing what Apple will do, and why, is a crap shoot. The video may well be legit and, since it’s short, there’s more to it than that. Further, I can see that the cascading menus might be considered necessary for the same reason I believe search is (i.e., 10 times the amount of data storage). With that much data to go through simply scrolling is not enough. In other words, the iPod would be a superset of the iPhone interface, with the extras owing to the far greater amounts of data it will hold.
The good news for iPhone users is that perhaps that device would just be a software update away from having those same interface improvements. I mean, if their respective initial interfaces have significant differences, Apple’s longer-term plans may be to unify them. This assumes the iPod will become an OS X device (why port the same interface two places?), but I already believe that will happen.
Unlike the iPhone, I won’t get a 6G iPod when it comes out (I’m very happy with my 5.5G 80GB), but it will be interesting to see what interface it includes, and if Apple works to make both devices work the same in handling media.