The iPod touch draws 99 per cent of its features from the iPhone. While iPhone owners have zero incentive for buying the touch, the rest of us now have a way to get our hands on many of the iPhone's features without a costly O2 contract.
The bad news is that the iPod touch does away with more than just the iPhone's phone capabilities -- it also gives up POP/IMAP email, built-in speakers, microphone, camera, Bluetooth and a handful of widget applications such as stock monitoring and weather forecasting.
Remaining features such as a Safari Web browser, YouTube video portal, photo viewer, music player, video player and iTunes Wi-Fi Music Store still place the iPod touch on the cutting edge for portable video players, however. In fact, at the time of this writing, the only product that can even compete with the iPod touch's combination of a Wi-Fi-enabled Web browser, wireless music store, widescreen video playback, photo viewer and audio player is the Archos 605 WiFi.
One of the few notable features that put the iPod touch ahead of the iPhone is the ability to output video and photos to a television using an optional Apple AV cable, Universal Dock or qualifying third-party video accessory.
Another advantage the iPod touch offers over the iPhone is the ability to manually manage music and video content in lieu of setting up automatic content syncing rules within iTunes. We are a little disappointed that the iPod touch is the only iPod that does not support a generic USB storage mode but we doubt many users will be upset by this.
Audio format support is unchanged from previous iPods. The touch supports standard and purchased AAC, as well as MP3, Audible, WAV, AIFF and Apple Lossless. Video format support is likewise unaltered from the H.264/MP4 files playable on 5G iPods, as well as the third-generation iPod nano and the iPod classic. The touch supports video resolutions up to 640x480 pixels at 30 frames per second.