Although I’ve been an Android user for nearly two years now I’ve had an iPod Touch for around six months and use it every day. I bought it mainly because I wanted a new gadget and thought it’d be a good way to try out iOS and get a real feel for it’s positives and negatives.
Over time I’ve grown to really love it. Yes, iOS is a bit limited and Apple’s restrictions can be totally infuriating at times but the things it does, it does exceptionally well. I’m still not one of Apple’s biggest fans but I have to grudgingly give them the thumbs up for producing a great device that offers an extremely slick and polished experience.
The best thing about the Touch is that you get the full iOS experience without the ridiculous cost of an iPhone or the contract fees. It lowers the entry requirements for iOS and allows Apple to expand its iOS user base. Many people can’t even buy a new phone if they want to, given that they’re often tied to long term contracts. So why haven’t any Android manufacturers released an equivalent device?
It seems like a no brainer. A cheaper device without any phone functionality that provides a great all round media experience: music, video, web and apps. I’m sure HTC could have fairly successful stab at it. Back at CES Samsung even announced a Galaxy Player based on the Galaxy S which would have fit the bill perfectly. Four months later they’ve managed to release the S2 but the player seems to have all but disappeared. They did release a cheaper version called the Galaxy Player 50 but the reviews weren’t exactly glowing.
Do the manufacturer’s not think there’s a big enough market to justify these Android media players? Given that Apple just announced that they’ve sold 60 million Touches to date I’d guess there’s a fairly large user base that would be interested. Having said that, where’s the WP7 equivalent too? The Zune HD appears to be nearing the end of it’s life and even then it never offered the full WP7 experience. I’d love to give WP7 a go in the same way the Touch let me do with iOS but I can’t. I’ve got money to spend but no one seems to want it.