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Why I chose the iPod touch (and not the iPhone)

CNET Asia review is convinced a better iPhone will come along to Asia next year, complete with 3G and further improvements.

Crave Asia

You'd think that years of being a CNET Asia reviewer would have taught me a thing or two about making tech purchases. Apparently not.

Prior to arriving in San Francisco for an Intel event, I had done my homework and somewhat set my mind on getting an iPhone. The $200 price cut that the Cupertino company had recently announced was just too good to pass. Not to mention that I was as fallible as the next customer when it came to the iPhone, from the impressive touch display interface down to the sleek Apple styling that's simply irresistible. A further bonus was the fact that the iPhone would officially be launched in Asia only next year, giving me early adopter status in the league of extraordinary geeks and making me (naturally) the envy of my fellow scribes back home. And if it turns out I don't like the iPhone after all, well, there's always eBay.

However, when I finally found myself standing inside the Apple Store in San Francisco late in September, the iPod Touch in one hand, the iPhone in the other, I started having second thoughts about the iPhone. Aside from not having faster connectivity options such as 3G and HSDPA, the iPhone needs to be unlocked by third-party options in order to be used with SIM cards other than AT&T's, and that's additional cost.

As much as I didn't like the glossy chrome finish of the Touch and its lack of a camera and cellular support, its slimmer design and larger 16GB capacity made it really attractive. Also noteworthy were its video-out capabilities and normal 3.5mm-jack, both of which aren't found on the iPhone. The iPhone's 3.5mm audio jack is recessed into the slot, making it compatible with only a selected number of earphones out there (unless it is used with an additional adapter).

Eventually, on my sixth visit to the Apple store, during which the Apple staff now readily recognized me, I finally got the 16GB iPod Touch. My rationale being that I'm still convinced a better iPhone will come along to Asia next year, complete with 3G and further improvements. There was that plus the limited availability of the iPod touch--the 16GB version was perpetually sold out on my first five visits to the store--which decided me. Am I happy with my decision now I've gotten it? You bet.

(Source: Crave Asia)