Photos: Apple's updated 5.5G iPod

Though it wasn't the true video iPod that we all expected (and wanted), the updated iPod adds some excellent software and performance updates. Features such as gapless playback, instant search, and enhanced games, plus stronger battery life and a brighter backlight, give this one-year-old form factor some fresh legs coming into the holiday season, one that will include competition from Microsoft, Creative, Archos, and Toshiba. Apple's getting the most it can get from the so-called 5.5G iPod, which now starts at $249 for the 30GB version; the 80GB is $349.

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