An iPod Nano? For me? You shouldn't have, Apple

CNET receives a surprise gift from Apple--an iPod plus extras--and it's going straight back.

Look what we got in the mail today from Apple! What could it be?

iPod shipping box

Hmmm, let's open it. Wow. What a pretty linen box! And look--a blank tag. Is this a present for someone? For us? Something to give to our moms this holiday season?

Open Apple box
Open iPod gift

Glory be, it's a blue iPod Nano. The new one, 4GB. But wait, there's more...the Nike + iPod Sport Kit, an armband, and a power adapter. Oh, and a $25 iTunes gift card. That's, like, cash!

iTunes gift card
iPod Nano arm band
iPod + Nike Sport Set

Lemme get the calculator. This adds up to approximately $314 worth of iPod goodies, not including the sparkly raffia--quite a haul. Perhaps this comes in honor of the iPod's own fifth birthday. We're not sure. The card in the box says, "To help brighten this holiday season, we've included a few of our favorites, including the completely remastered iPod Nano with its colorful anodized-aluminum finish, an iPod armband...[the list goes on]...and instructions to redeem a pair of Nike + shoes." Wait. Shoes, too? Now the bill comes to $424.

OK, some background: I manage the team of CNET editors who write reviews of mobile gear. That includes iPods. One of my jobs is enforcing our strict code of ethics. So thanks, Apple, for thinking of us. But no one's mom will be getting this Nano for Christmas--it's going straight back, along with the rest of the goodies. (Although I admit: I'll be crying all the way to FedEx.)

(Photo: Corinne Schulze, CNET Networks)

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