Skip

Ipod Touch without the Wifi?
January 3, 2009 7:41 AM   Subscribe

Is an Ipod Touch worth it if you don't have easy access to Wifi?

I don't have wifi at home (broadband only) and am considering purchasing my first Ipod product. The Touch is appearing pretty nifty with the touch screen and all but I am wondering if it is worth it w/o the access to wifi. Would it be a waste of resources on me considering I couldn't use all the apps etc?

I'm thinking my main use would be of course for mp3s, audiobooks and podcasts. Would there be another Ipod that is more suitable?
posted by beautifulcheese to Computers & Internet (24 answers total)
 
Why not just buy a cheap wifi router for your home? You could probably find one for less than $30. Also, do you visit coffee shops and other places that have free wifi? If so, it would come in handy there.

Also, there are tons of iPod Touch apps that don't require an internet connection. there are games, translators, notes, calendar, calculator, etc.

If you're absolutely sure you will never have wifi anywhere you use it, and you don't watch videos, and the offline apps don't interest you, then you could save $100 and get the Nano. The advantages of the Nano are that it's smaller, cheaper, and you can operate it more easily without having to look at it. But there are so many more advantages to the touch if you can figure out a way to utilise the wifi connection.
posted by helios at 7:52 AM on January 3, 2009


Remember that just because you don't have regular wifi access with it doesn't mean you can't download apps like games or organizational software from the app store through your computer. I don't have wifi at home but I use my touch as a PDA. Do you want to watch movies, tv shows, or video podcasts? If so then I would say it's worth it. If not, and you only want it for the three things you mentioned, I'd look into the nano or classic, depending on how much storage capacity you want.
posted by Roman Graves at 7:55 AM on January 3, 2009


Without wifi, what you mainly have is an iPod with a big screen and a small amount of storage. I guess it would be good if you wanted to watch movies on-the-go, or read ebooks. If you use it mostly for music and podcasts, you'll get more storage per dollar with a Nano or Classic iPod.

I have an iPhone, and use the data access quite a bit outside the house. At home, I'm far more likely to just walk over to the computer. So, as helio mentioned, you could just buy a cheap wireless router, but I'm not sure how much use you would make of it with the Touch (once the novelty wears off).
posted by paulg at 8:04 AM on January 3, 2009


If your computer has a WiFi adapter built in then you should be able to create an "ad hoc" WiFi network. If you're using a Mac then this is as easy as enabling WiFi then choosing "Create Network" from the WiFi menulet menu.

There's certainly no reason why you shouldn't use apps without WiFi, though. The only real snag would be that some apps use WiFi as a means to sync data with your computer.
posted by arc at 8:05 AM on January 3, 2009


I'm thinking my main use would be of course for mp3s, audiobooks and podcasts.

Are you sure? If you had a device like the Touch, with other features (web browsing, email and Apps), would you use them?

Also the Touch comes in three different sizes, at three different prices, plus you can get a refurbished generation one (doesn't have the built in speaker) iTouchs. You can get a slightly cheaper one and spend the left over cash on a router for your home.

As noted upon, there tons of apps that don't require a WiFi connection.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:06 AM on January 3, 2009


I only have wifi at home (where I never use my ipod) but I love my iPod touch. There are many, many useful apps that don't require internet connections to access (I'm looking at the Katamari game next), and, although my most frequently used app is flashcards for Kanji, I use my ipod to watch tv and movies almost every day that I commute. The screen size of the touch is, IMO more than enough reason to choose it over any other iPod. Honestly, I don't know other pmp's, but if you're comfortable with the iPod, it's not bad. The calendar, notes, and calculator functions are a nice bonus.

On the downside, it is just not as handy to use as a dedicated mp3 player, as helios mentioned. You need to actually look at it to use it, unlike the various click wheel ipods.
posted by Ghidorah at 8:08 AM on January 3, 2009


If you are already buying an Ipod, it's about $100 more for the touch. $100 isn't much to spend on a wi-fi enabled websurfing device and the iphone/touch interface is very slick and handles the real web and video very well.

As others have said you can either use a wifi-enabled laptop to create a hotspot, or pick up a cheap router or wifi card for a desktop. Nowadays many restaurants open up their internet connection for customers, so you can get connected often at lunch.
posted by Manjusri at 8:15 AM on January 3, 2009 [1 favorite]


Are wireless routers easy to set up with PCs? I'm a complete n00b when it comes to such stuff and avoided all that and set up a wired network when I had to here at home.
posted by beautifulcheese at 8:43 AM on January 3, 2009


Your easiest and best option is to replace your current router for one which supports wired and wifi connections. I would describe this as easy to set up. Enable encryption. Using a pc or laptop to create an ad hoc connection is slightly more complicated and not as convenient.
posted by Manjusri at 9:08 AM on January 3, 2009


If you wanna save about 60 bucks on the iPod, you can go to Apple's refurb store (store.apple.com, scroll to bottom, look on left for "Refurbished iPod".

The 32GB (largest) touch is going for $320+tax which comes out to about $340 (or did for me)
It retails for $400, and you get the full warranty with a refurb and can purchase applecare for it later.

I would recommend a WRT54GL on newegg.com as a router.
posted by ijoyner at 9:24 AM on January 3, 2009


The 32GB (largest) touch is going for $320+tax which comes out to about $340 (or did for me)

It looks like this is older generation iTouch, which doesn't have speakers, so be warned!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:32 AM on January 3, 2009


I have an iPod Touch (1st gen), and while I have wifi at home (and at work), I do spend time in spots with no wifi. I've got a bunch of videos on this thing - the screen is pretty fantastic - and a couple of different apps (Stanza, Instapaper) that allow me to read lots of things even while offline. I have games. I have music. I keep my calendar on the Touch. It's a pretty amazing device.
posted by rtha at 9:43 AM on January 3, 2009


Are wireless routers easy to set up with PCs? I'm a complete n00b when it comes to such stuff and avoided all that and set up a wired network when I had to here at home.

Do you have a PC with WiFi? If so, then this:

(XP) (Vista)

is the easiest and cheapest way to set up a wireless network in your home. You don't necessarily need a router.
posted by mr_roboto at 9:44 AM on January 3, 2009


looks like this is older generation iTouch, which doesn't have speakers, so be warned!

If you go this route, I recommend the Sony SRS-TP1 external speakers, as they don't need a power source, they plug in to the Touch's headphone jack.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:16 AM on January 3, 2009


It depends on what you want to do with it. Syncing movies and TV shows to it is pretty cool if you want to watch movies on the train/bus/waiting room, etc. However, the WiFi features are so cool, and the web browsing works so well, that I would feel like I'm missing something without it.

But it's so easy to put in a wireless router that I don't see any reason not to.
posted by Fuzzy Skinner at 10:18 AM on January 3, 2009


Thanks all. I'm going to go make the leap and get the Touch because frankly there are so many darn things cool about it as you all pointed out. I think I'll make the leap with the wireless router as well.
posted by beautifulcheese at 10:23 AM on January 3, 2009


Main downside of the touch: It really makes you want an iPhone.
posted by Artw at 11:40 AM on January 3, 2009 [1 favorite]


I have to disagree with Artw on wanting an iPhone when you have a touch. I love my touch and I use it all the time. The only thing that frustrates me is when I have to type. I much prefer the hard keys on my qwerty cell phone. It's a personal thing, I'm sure, but I make fewer mistakes with the hard keys than with the touch screen.
posted by cooker girl at 1:17 PM on January 3, 2009


I don't really feel the need for an iPhone either. I know several people who have them, but I don't like the size factor for use as a phone. Holding a giant brick to my face is pretty unappealing.

The touch has nearly all of the features you'd get with the phone, but you don't need to sign contracts to get it. Win win, in my mind.
posted by Ghidorah at 5:13 PM on January 3, 2009


Main downside of the touch: It really makes you want an iPhone.

Not if you don't want to double your phone bill.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:55 PM on January 3, 2009 [1 favorite]


Another downside of the touch (instead of phone) is that it doesn't have external hard volume button controls. Instead you have to unlock and use a soft volume control, which is nearly impossible to do blindly in your pocket.

This was a deal-breaker for me.
posted by schrodycat at 6:34 PM on January 3, 2009


I have both a Touch and an iPod Classic; the Classic is definitely the better device for listening to audio:
I often want to pause an audiobook or podcast when somebody speaks to me; I can do this without taking the iPod classic out of my pocket, but on the iPod Touch I have to fiddle more, and look at the device rather than the person. I feel kind of rude.
After the interruption is over, I want to scrub back a minute or two to just before I left off. On a large file (like an audiobook or a podcast of an hour or more) this is really incredibly fiddly with the slider on the touchscreen whereas the traditional scrollwheel is absolutely perfect for this.
I can skip to the next or previous song using the clickwheel without taking the iPod Classic out of my pocket and looking at it. Not so with the Touch.
I have a lot of music and audiobooks, way more than the 120 GB I can get on the Classic. The iPod Touch is looking alarmingly full and I've only had it a week. How many audiobooks will you want to carry?
I worry about breaking or scratching the Touch, whereas my old iPods have all happily lived in my back pocket and been sat on without complaint.
The games on the iPod classic seem to let you keep listening to what you were, rather than stopping iTunes as on the Touch.
Battery life. Battery life. Battery life. Battery life.

So you need to weigh these factors against all the awesomeness of the iPod Touch. Between Instapaper and Stanza, you can put a lot of reading material on there very easily ad it's a surprisingly good ebook reader for its size. And some of the games are really quite good.

The current, 2nd gen. model of the iPod Touch DOES have external volume controls. You really do want this version if you get one, and I fear the refurbs might be the old model.
posted by nowonmai at 7:49 PM on January 3, 2009


Posting this from an iPod Touch.

These things have functionality that's nearly on par with a PDA, and it happens to be a good music and video player, as well as a great digital photo viewer. But where I've really found mine to be the awesomest thing ever is on road trips. Finding wifi on the road isn't too tough, and with the Touch you have a full web browser (except Flash, which I really don't miss) and email, and Google maps, and contacts, without carrying a laptop. I've used it to get directions and find places to eat in unfamiliar cities, as well as finding and researching places to stay. Having that kind of functionality and then some in such a small device rocks. Especially when you take a lot of trips on a motorcycle like I do. All that and several days worth of music too.
posted by azpenguin at 10:09 PM on January 3, 2009


"Another downside of the touch (instead of phone) is that it doesn't have external hard volume button controls. Instead you have to unlock and use a soft volume control, which is nearly impossible to do blindly in your pocket. "

The touch 2g has external volume buttons.

I bought my touch to use with my ipod integrated car stereo, and kicked in $100 to have a spare wi-fi device sitting around. But I've found myself using the wi-fi far more than the music. As Artw said I'm really jonesing for an iphone now, but I can't bear to part with my Sprint SERO plan.
posted by Manjusri at 9:16 AM on January 7, 2009


« Older How to encourage a girlfriend ...   |  Had to go to the emergency roo... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.


Post