Opinion: Should Apple extend their new family with touchscreen, Intel-based, OS X laden iPods?

andy-merrett.jpgAndy Merrett writes…

With all the furore surrounding the iPhone, rumours about the next (sixth) generation of iPod have been a little quiet.

Now that the iPhone is safely launched, in the US at least, we can once again discuss what Apple might do to keep on top of the portable music player market.

ipod_touchscreen.jpgPMPToday is just one site circulating the rumour of a touchscreen iPod – coming as early as August.

DigiTimes says that the next-generation 6G iPod video will feature touch-screen panels similar to the iPhone. The reported supplier of the capacitive touch-screen panels is Taiwan-based manufacturer WinTek. WinTek has yet to make an official statement due to customer confidentiality, but sources from upstairs have confirmed the news. The estimated shipping date of the panels is late 2007.

Yes, it seems that the touchscreen device is the new, erm, non-touchscreen device. Now that Apple have pushed large touchscreens into the public gaze with their shiny iPhone, it’s not surprising that some think they should roll that out to future iPods, too.

The hardware is just one aspect of Apple’s future success. It’s rumoured that future iPods could run OS X, which might also imply they’d use Intel chips.

As far as I’m concerned, Apple’s “killer app” is becoming even clearer.

Euro iPhone Rumours continue: O2 poised for UK launch?

With the US iPhone launch safely out of the way, attention turns to a European launch, and it’s as rumour-filled as anything the Americans could cook up.

On Tuesday, we reported that German company Deutsche Telekom were poised to clinch an exclusive iPhone deal, at least for German customers. In previous months, both Vodafone and T-Mobile were said to be favourites for winning the iPhone.

O2 were supposedly nowhere to be seen.

Yet a report in yesterday’s Financial Times suggests otherwise.