With all due respect to my colleague Donald Bell, I don't believe Apple should dump the iPod Touch.
Rather, I still think it's a killer product, perfect for kids and other users who want the iPhone experience without the iPhone price. In fact, thanks to apps like Skype and Truphone, all you need is proximity to Wi-Fi and you can make phone calls from a Touch.
Apple hasn't released a new model since 2010, nor has it budged on prices -- but you can still score a deal. While supplies last, Apple has the refurbished 8GB iPod Touch fourth-gen for $169 shipped. That's $30 off the price of a new one -- not a mammoth savings, but enough to buy you a nice selection of apps, e-books, movies, music, and the like.
Granted, 8GB isn't a lot of storage, especially if you plan to shoot video with the Touch's 720p camera. Apple also offers the 32GB Touch for $249 (a savings of $50) and the 64GB model for $339 (a savings of $60) -- the latter affording your best bang for the buck, storage-wise.
If you've never purchased a refurbished product before, you may be wondering what you're in for. Will it be heavily used-looking? Scuffed or scraped? Damaged in some way?
Not here. Apple's refurbs are the gold standard, to the point where I think you should always opt for refurbished when shopping for Apple products.
This iPod Touch, for example, will have a new outer shell, a new battery, unopened earbuds, and a full one-year warranty, same as a new one. The only catch, if you can call it that, is the box it comes in: plain white cardboard, not fancy plastic. That matters only if this is a gift item, and even then, isn't it what's inside that counts?
Until recently, Apple had only 3rd-gen Touches at refurb prices. I'm glad to finally see the fourth-gen models, with their Retina displays, HD-video and FaceTime capabilities, and AirPlay support.
What do you think of the iPod Touch? Still a viable product, or past its prime now that smartphones are so ubiquitous?
Bonus deal: Today only, and while supplies last, CowBoom has the pre-owned Nook Color e-reader for $99.99, plus $5 for shipping. That's just plain incredible, though it's worth noting this is not Barnes & Noble-recertified. That means no one-year warranty and "some fine scratches or minor scuffs."
Bonus deal No. 2: Um, remember that $16.99 32GB flash drive from last week? It's even less now. While supplies last (I'm surprised they're not already gone), Newegg has the Corsair Flash Voyager 32GB flash drive for $14.09. That's after applying coupon code EMCNFJG37 and redeeming a $12 mail-in rebate. Even so: unreal deal.