iPod Touch: Jobs Calls It A 'Gaming Machine'


Jobs on Wednesday explained the design philosophy behind some of Apple's most popular devices in an interview with David Pogue of The New York Times.

Jobs, looking gaunt at his first Apple press conference since he took a leave of absence in January after suffering through pancreatic cancer which resulted in a liver transplant, told Pogue that Apple put a video camera in the iPod Nano and not the iPod Touch because the iPod Touch is being promoted as a gaming machine.

That wasn't always the case, Jobs said, noting that when the iPod Touch first came out, Apple itself was trying to decide if it was an iPhone without the phone, or some sort of pocket computer.

In the end, Jobs said, customers perceived the iPod Touch as a gaming machine, while Apple saw it as the lowest-cost way for customers to access Apple's AppStore.

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As a gaming machine, Apple needed to keep the iPod Touch price below $200, which meant not adding certain capabilities such as a video camera, Jobs said.

Meanwhile, the 0.2-inch-thick iPod Nano is barely thick enough to fit in the sensors for a video recorder, but the sensors for still cameras, especially with autofocus, are too thick, Jobs said.

Jobs also told Pogue that the market for dedicated e-readers like the Amazon Kindle, for now is small because customers probably are not willing to pay for a general-purpose device that can offer multiple functions such as presenting electronic books.