Analyst believes next-gen iPod will have Wi-Fi and GPS

Apple's next iPod model could include Wi-Fi and GPS connectivity, according to analyst Jesse Tortora.

Although the iPhone has been the biggest iPod-related news from Apple in months, the market is still waiting for a 6th generation, non-phone iPod to be released.

Tortora believes that the next model will include significant alterations, including a wide touchscreen, Wi-Fi connectivity to bring it into competition with the Zune, and GPS.

Once the iPod has GPS added, it could be used as an entertainment hub in cars, says Tortora.

The analysis makes sense, as creating a non-phone iPod with the same shell as the iPhone will cut down on production costs for Apple, and open up a wider market made up of those people happy with their more conventional, high spec smartphones, but wanting an iPod for music and entertainment.

Tortora also believes that Apple may switch to NAND flash memory in all its iPods as soon as the end of this year.

This could have a significant impact on the hard drive market, as video iPods account for about 50% of the market for the 1.8-inch drives that Apple uses.

Tortora, a researcher with Prudential, is often quoted for his Apple iPod analysis, but he doesn't always get it right.

Last October, Tortora predicted that Apple would launch not just one, but two phones in January, one based on the iPod and the other a smartphone.

And in December, Tortora said that there was a distinct possibility that Apple might move into the console hardware games market.


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