Jobs: iPod line refreshed, expanded

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Apple CEO Steve Jobs showed off an expanded and refreshed iPod line today that included a Windows version.

The iPod is now available in three configurations: a 5GB model for US$299, a thinner (by 10 percent) 10GB model for $399, and a new 20GB model that can hold 4,000 songs for $499. Both the 10GB and the 20GB models feature the industry's first solid-state touch wheel for better precision, accuracy and durability, and include a new Apple carrying case and wired remote, Jobs said.

For Mac users, the new iPod (due in early August) will include the new iTunes 3. For Windows users, the iPod will work with MusicMatch Jukebox. The Windows version will be available in late August since "we have to take care of our Mac users first," Jobs said.

iPod is the only MP3 player to provide Windows customers with Apple's Auto-sync technology, to keep their iPod automatically updated every time it is plugged into their PC, Jobs said. Users also have the option to manually transfer individual songs or playlists from their MusicMatch library to their iPod.

iPods for both systems come with improved headphones that offer enhanced bass response, smoother transitions, and more accurate high-end sound reproduction, according to Jobs. The iPods also feature a redesigned and more portable thin FireWire cable; the 20GB and 10GB iPod models include a built-in protective cover for the FireWire port.

Laser engraving is available for $49 and can include two lines of text with up to 27 characters per line. All iPod models include earbud headphones, Apple iPod Power Adapter and FireWire cable. 10GB and 20GB iPod models include carrying case and wired remote; optional remote and carrying case are available for 5GB iPod models. iPod for Windows also includes a 4-pin-to-6-pin FireWire adapter.

iPod for Mac requires Mac OS X version 10.1 or Mac OS 9.2, iTunes 2.0.4 and a Macintosh with built-in FireWire port. iPod for Windows requires a PC with built-in FireWire or a Windows-certified FireWire card and Windows Me, Windows 2000, or Windows XP Home or Professional.

This story, "Jobs: iPod line refreshed, expanded" was originally published by PCWorld.

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