How Different is the iPod Nano From Its First Release?

iPod Nano

Technology moves so fast these days that it only takes a decade or so before we start looking at gadgets like they once existed in prehistoric times.

There's no better example of that than the iPod series, the gadget of personal audio and video that's been around throughout most of the the 2000s.

Take a look at the original iPod Classic and you'll think you're looking at a relic of the past.  But how about the iPod Nano?

One gander at this picture (courtesy of Wikipedia) will show you just how different the iPod Nano looks today.  But has more changed than just the exterior?  Let's look at a few of the changes that have occurred over the years.

•    The original Nano was launched with two different storage capacities: 2 and 4 gigabytes.  Those have since quadrupled, with the low price for a fifth-generation Nano bringing you a whopping 8 GB and the higher-priced version providing 16 GB of storage.  Considering space has quadrupled in the span of only four years or so, I'd say that's a fairly dramatic improvement.

•    Current-generation iPod Nanos come with cameras and microphones, a feat that isn't even close to the original Nano, which was more limited to pre-determined sound and sight.  You can now bring your iPod Nano with you and expect to record some footage wherever you go, much like a camera-phone.

•    The latest iPod Nano also has features like FM radio, special effects for your video recording, and Nike+ iPod support, which means that you can integrate your iPod with your...well, your shoe.

At the beginning of 2005, there wasn't even a Nano series available on the market, but in just four or so short years since then, one part of the iPod and iPhone world has moved vastly far, driven by the need to satisfy customer demand and beat out competition.

Although we're used to quick updates and upgrades in technology this day and age, simply stepping back and taking a look back at iPod's Nano series - originally launched as a replacement for the iPod Mini - lets you know how far we've come.  If that's the kind of progress we made in the past five years, it's also fun to think about what kind of gadgets might be around in 2014.  Did someone say iPod Cheetah?