iPod Touch or iPhone for video producers?


Apple’s unveiling of the iPod Touch was an expected announcement. For those who have video demo reels, there is hardy a better way than to show them “on a moment’s notice” than on such a beautiful little piece of hardware.

However, now that the iPhone is available “phone free,” which device makes the better handy-dandy video playback tool?

Aside from a 7″ Archos video player, there’s really litle else in the US market that competes with the slick presenation of your video on an iPhone or iPod Touch. Both have the exact same interface and screen so it’s a draw.

It’s wicked thin, even with more RAM, and it look like it fixes the stupid recessed headphone jack blunder of the iPhone. In terms of a powerful gadget that nearly vanishes when viewed edge-on, the Touch is pretty sweet.

Image courtesy of Engadget.

RAM: Touch
For compaison, the iPod Touch (or just “Touch”) is thinner and has 16g of RAM. If you need to carry a few demos and maybe a video clip for yourself to watch, this doubling of RAM is incredibly important. 8g of storage is really not a whole heck of a lot. Then when you consider that SD cards are rounding 8gon their way to 16 and 32g, you know anything with a small, fixed amount of RAM is going to be outpaced by needs in about a year. In this instance, the Touch is better than the iPhone, with it’s measily 8g of RAM.

The Touch lost them. Plain and simple, the iPhone has speakers which lets several people partake in any media playback without any headphones, or adaptors, or connections.
Press play and look. That’s it. The iPhone wins here.

The Touch is slightly cheaper than the now reduced price of the 8g iPhone at $399.
At $399 for the 16g, and just $299 for an iPhone comparable 8g of RAM, it’s about the same as the top iPod always was, but it just has a _lot_ less space than a video iPod (classic). However, if you’re already using the carrier that supplies the iPhone (in the USA it’s AT&T) then you were going to pay for phone service anyway. And, as others have reported, the unlimited data plan is actually a pretty good bargain when compared against other smart-phone data prices. The surprise announcement that the iPhone price drops to nearly commensurate with the Touch means it all hinges on the contract and whether you are someone who was going to pay for cell & data smart-phone service anyway. If you were, then the iPhone rocks. If you do just fine with basic cell service, or love your Sprint music, or your Verizon TV, then the Touch was made for you.

CAMERA: iPhone
There is no camera in the Touch. Even though the iPhone doesn’t do video (what’s up with that anyway) at least it has an internal camera to snap a photo. And a pretty decent camera when you have a decent amount of light.

It’s hard to knock a Touch that also happens to be your phone. One less device to carry around and keep charged. Moreover, it also has that wicked slick Touch interface for all your Phone needs. I like the simplicity of one gadget that does many things, especially when it does it as well as the iPhone does.

The question is, how much video do you _need_ to carry with you in between times you can access your computer and change out your video? Hmmm. Also, consider the QVGA video on the device and how small it can be squeezed. A few full-size clips of bars & tone, test signals- well, those can actually just be still photos and music clips, right? So how much space does the mobile producer really _need_ to show a demo or two, and maybe a teaser trailer for the movie they’re pitching. Hmmm. really, in the end, I think 8g is probably enough if you plan on using it just as a video resume you carry around with you. If you are a video junkee, then even 16g is too little.


WINNER? That’s up to you.
If I could, I’d get an iPhone. If there was a thicker Touch with a 20g or larger hard drive inside (at the same prices) I’d get that. For the limited RAM, having the device also be my phone makes it purchasable. Without that, it’s a really expensive iPod Nano Video just for the cool interface.

The huge slash in price for the 8g iPhone is another really compelling reason to get the iPhone. There have been ways reported to get it working without the phone. Or maybe hack it for use with a different GSM carrier. Either way, an investment in an iPhone today just for the Touch (saying you can get it to work without a cell contract) costs little more than the Touch and you also have a cell phone you could potentially activate down the road. That’s 2 for $100 more than the price of one.


8 thoughts on “iPod Touch or iPhone for video producers?

Add yours

  1. What about the possibility of video out? Easily connect your iPod to the component video inputs on a TV. And a video projector?


    Apple has also added component video output to the iPods announced today via a component video cable. Apple states that component video output is currently supported with the iPod Nano (3G) and iPod classic (6G) at 480p or 576p, and the iPod Touch at 480i or 576i resolution.

  2. iPhone, no question. Might as well if you are going to bite the bullet and lay out that much cash. And with the $200 iPhone price drop, they have made a seriously good case for buying the phone. I agree though…if the Touch had a hard drive with larger capacity, the decision would be harder.


  3. Kristiano,
    The Touch has 16g of Flash.

    Componen out is nice, but thusfar, you can’t put HD video on an iPod device, so you’re still just spitting out QVGA (320×240) or VGA (640×480) video, probably heavily compressed. The advantages of a component output are minimal, and a simple composite video cable can connect to far more displays.

  4. Both Composite and Component video out possible for both iPhone and iPods:

    Apple Composite AV Cable
    Easily connect your iPod to the composite video inputs on a TV.

    Apple Component AV Cable
    Easily connect your iPod to the component video inputs on a TV.

    Which is best? Thanks.

  5. Great summary. They key point here is that there now is so much choice for carrying video on the go. We are extremely excited about the iPhone, iPod touch and the nano.

    You can now get a portable video player for $149. That is amazing. This will open up so many more distribution models for producers and filmmakers.

    There will be millions of people with mobile video devices in their hands/pockets next year. It’s time for content creators to get to work to deliver great content!

  6. Good comparison. Just curious, what is teh different between iphone 8G and 16G beside the harddrive space, interms of hardware or usability?

  7. lol. in their physical appearances, iphone is more bigger and has silver thingy on the sides. but for me, i’d rather buy a 64gb ipod touch.(new). they’re coming out not but its a lil bit more expensive. ipod touch has 8gb,32gb and 64gb.

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