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Monday, September 17, 2007, 08:40 am PT (11:40 am ET)

New iPods: Classic and Nano SW updates, Touch display issues

Apple has released firmware updates for its new iPod Classic and iPod Nano to address bugs present in the version of the software that ships with the players. Meanwhile, reviewers are drawing attention to a perceived quality issue with some of the display screens on the company's new iPod Touch.

Classic and Nano firmware updates

Just-released firmware updates for the new iPod Nano and iPod Classic include "bug fixes," according to Apple, which provided no further details on the software revisions. Both updates are available after docking the new players to a computer running iTunes.

While Apple remains relatively silent on what users should expect from the releases, some users report that the update does away with some of the interface sluggishness on the iPod Classic, which was noted in AppleInsider's review of the player last week.

iPod Touch display issues

Meanwhile, several reviews of Apple's new iPod Touch appearing on Monday have taken issue with the display quality of the player's touch-screen. The Washington Post reports that a 16GB model purchased at the San Francisco Apple store exhibits an issue that translates into many dark scenes being "almost unwatchable."

Video looks reversed out in dark areas, creating a very distracting negative effect. Several other users have reported the same problem on Apple's forums, so I know I'm not alone, but other posters have mentioned that their displays work just fine. Perhaps this defect is confined to a small portion of Apple's initial iPod touch shipment and those of us experiencing the problem will be able to get replacements.

AppleInsider's own 16GB iPod Touch review unit appears to be one of the player's not affected by issue. From the review:

Compared next to [the iPhone], the Touch seemed to have a slightly bluer cast over the neutral grey background areas, but photos and videos I examined in still frames and in motion appeared identical, and I could not see any noticeable difference in color accuracy, brightness, or contrast. The background difference I noticed on the Touch could be related to the fact that it uses a revised version of OS X (as noted in more detail below), but could also be related to the dark, wide mask surrounding the screen. Identical objects against different backgrounds can appear not to match; when I masked off the screen with white paper, I could not see any difference between the two displays.

Apple iPod touch


As mentioned above, AppleInsider's review of the iPod Touch includes a section dedicated to the disparities between the versions of OS X running on the iPhone and the Touch, including a list of Touch features that are likely to turn up in an impending update to the iPhone.