I’ve had a 16 GB iPod Touch since roughly when they were released. I ended up jailbreaking it before I even loaded music up on it, and it became one of my everyday devices. With the release of OS 2.0, I held off on updating it for two reasons: (1) I liked having all of my jailbroken apps, and (2) I couldn’t understand why iTouch users were being charged a $9.95 premium over iPhone users for the same software. I eventually ended up getting OS 2.0 because I brought my iTouch to the genius bar in my local Apple store to ask them why I was missing icons (I only have ‘Playlists’, ‘Artists’, and ‘Albums’ in my music menu; it’s missing ‘Songs’ and ‘More’), and they were kind enough to give it to me for free. Since then, I’ve left my iTouch non-jailbroken, just using the App Store to load it up with my “necessary” applications. However, with the recent release of the iPhone 3GS, and the introduction of OS 3.0, I’m again trying to figure out why iPhone users are given this update for free, but iTouch users are still required to pay a premium.
I understand that the iPhone is subsidized by AT&T, and as such, Apple probably gets some amount of money each month for every iPhone that is currently in use. And I’m sure that this amounts to a decent sum each month. But iTouch’s cost the user more for the device itself (iPhone 3G, 8 GB @ $99 vs. iTouch, 8 GB @ $229). So again, why does Apple think it is fair to charge for this update? Regardless of the financial or marketing idea behind this move, it ultimately isn’t fair to iTouch users who paid a premium to own an iPod to begin with, and are then told they need to keep shelling out money for each update to keep the latest OS on their device. This was the case when the iTouch/iPhone was originally introduced, and the iTouch failed to ship with Stocks, Weather, Maps, and Notes. Users were then charged $9.95 to add these apps; apps that should have been included. This means that for a user who purchased an original iTouch and wanted to keep it up-to-date, they will have spent an additional ~$30 in software updates alone, not taking into account the amount they’ve spent on App Store programs also. It comes as no surprise to me that finding alternative download links to these updates is easily done with a quick google or youtube search, where other users are often eager to post links and jailbreak techniques for the latest updates. With that being said, I’m currently downloading the 3.0 update, and will post an update once it’s installed.
UPDATE #1: So its been about an hour since the 3.0 downloaded finished. Since then, my iTouch has pretty much been stuck in recovery mode, and not taking any updates. It finally took a 2.2.1 restore. I double checked the MD5 Hash on the 3.0 download, and it matches, so I’m gonna give it another shot. Chances are I’ll fall asleep before I can test out any new features, so check back in the coming days.
UPDATE #2: So I tried another 2 times last night, once with the original 3.0 file, and again with a copy I found off of The Pirate Bay. The Pirate Bay copy wouldn’t even start an update/restore, it kept giving me an error message. The original update again resulted in an iPod stuck in recovery mode. Seeing as it was 2:30 AM at this point, I went to sleep. I just did some quick searching, and believe the reason it wasn’t able to update was that I don’t have the latest version of iTunes installed. So that’s updating now, and hopefully everything will work.
UPDATE #3: So after getting iTunes 8.2.1 finally installed on my Hackintosh, the update finally took. All my apps stayed intact from the restore and sync from last night, which is nice. Additionally, I now have my “lost” icons back, but at the cost of not restoring the backup I had originally made. I don’t see this being too bad, as there wasn’t much on my iTouch except for the apps that are already back, and my music, which I’ll take care of soon. As far as the new features (considering this isn’t the iPhone, so things like landscape texting don’t make a difference here), I only really notice the search option, and the fact that the number of installed applications is listed in the “About” section. I’m sure new features will make their prescence known as I use my newly updated iTouch more.