Supposedly, Apple is going to include support for cellular-wireless data in the next iPod touch. This would function similar to the iPad — users will be able to get a 3G internet connection, but not make phone calls. And presumably customers will have a choice between versions with this feature and others that offer only Wi-Fi.
Until now, the iTouch as it’s sometimes called has appealed primarily to those who want the features of an Apple smartphone — especially the thousands of games in the App Store — but without having to pay a monthly service fee to a wireless carrier. If some version of the fifth-generation model include cellular-wireless data capabilities, it will blur the line between Apple’s smartphones and this line of handheld computers.
Apple has introduced a new iPod touch in early fall of the last four years, but there’s reason to believe this year might be different. A new iPhone has hit store shelves in early summer of each of those years, but it’s now July and this company’s next smartphone has yet to be unveiled. At this point, it’s not clear when the fifth-generation iPhone is going to be released, and whether the latest iPod touch will come out at the same time, or several months later.
That said, if Apple wants millions of these handhelds to be given as Christmas gifts — like it does every year — the new model needs to be available for the holiday shopping season.
If the iPhone 5 is being redesigned to be thinner and lighter, as reports indicate, than the iTouch 5 will almost certainly be too. This device has always followed the iPhone’s design and feature-set, just without the phone. And like its smartphone sister, it will surely debut running iOS 5.