Customer Reviews: Apple iPod touch 8 GB Black (4th Generation) (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
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on April 30, 2011
I purchased my Ipod Touch 8G in January, 2011 just for fun and to see what all the fuss was about. I use a laptop and have wireless connectivity in my home. But I don't store music on an Ipod and don't have "smart" cell phone. After using the Ipod Touch for a few months, all I can say is "WOW".

This device is like carrying a small computer in your pocket. I can connect to the internet wirelessly at home and anywhere I can find a public connection--library, cafe, etc. I check my email (read and compose), facebook, Meetups, Ravelry, take pictures and movies, and with the Skype App, can video call my kids. I have become hooked on the Angry Birds game, which is fun to do while waiting anywhere. I have also downloaded audio books from my library to take with me when I travel. I knit and have any pattern I am working on loaded on my Touch so I don't worry about losing it. All this in a 2x4 inch little device I can carry with me everywhere.

I considered getting a smart phone instead, but Verizon's additional mandatory monthly cost of $30/month turned me off. It would be nice to have internet access where ever I am, but I don't need it and don't want to pay $360/year for it. I like the fact that the Ipod Touch does not require any additional monthly costs.

I compared my Touch to my friends Ipad. It appears that my Touch does most everything the Ipad does, but the Touch is so much smaller.

My son has a Droid, which does what my Touch does plus it is his cell phone. But games wear his battery down quickly. I don't have to worry about that since my phone is separate from my Touch.

If I needed to be connected to the internet at all times and have a cell phone too, I would probably stick with a smart phone and pay the extra $30/month. But if you want a very versatile tool in a small package to carry with you, I highly recommend the Ipod Touch.

So much fun!

August 17, 2012 Update--Everything I said in my review still holds true. The Ipod Touch is a quality product--really it is a tiny Ipad. I hope Apple comes out with a smaller Ipad, say a 7 inch model. A larger screen would be nice for reading and playing games and would still be small enough to carry around easily.
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on September 19, 2010
My original review focused on whether you can successfully use an 8 gb version of this 4th gen iPod Touch in lieu of a more expensive, larger memory version. My conclusion (at the end of this highly revised review) was, and remains, a resounding YES but there is one aspect, that applies to ALL the iPod Touch 4th generation editions (8/32/64 gb), that I now think is MUCH more important:

The quality of the screen display.

Simply put, this device has near-iPad screen quality in a 3.5" device. (960x640 resolution at 326 pixels per inch, vs. 1024x768 resolution at 132 pixels per inch).

That means you can get almost iPad quality video in approximately 3.6 ounces of device vs. 24 ounces of device; in a device that fits a shirt pocket vs. a device you need a separate bag for. In a device you can hold up as a reader vs. a device that tires your arms.

This Touch is VERY practical for reading NYTimes articles or USAToday articles in their reader applications, optimized for this size display (crisp, large type). VERY practical for browsing the regular on-line editions of most newspapers (tap once to fit a column to a screen with nice readable type). GREAT for YouTube since the YouTube app included with the device is optimized for delivering high def YouTube content - if available, HD videos are automatically preferred. GREAT for Netflix and Hulu Plus. GREAT for gmail and ok for Facebook (I am sure FB will make its dedicated app more user-friendly in the future).

Great, for me, for online banking and stock research/trading.

Great for catching up on tech websites in their "mobile" formats.

So-so for Yahoo; I don't like Yahoo Mobile right now and their regular online edition, via the built in Safari browser, doesn't scale up and down as nicely as the online NYTimes does.

And oh yeah, the device can store adequate amounts of your own music library (or stream Slacker or Pandora, customized for you, in free or pay editions) and download iTunes paid video content for later consumption, stream to Apple TV, or you can move your own DVD content to the device via easy conversion programs.

Last year I ventured out on some vacations with an iPod Touch, the last generation, as a "backup" to my netbook. I found myself easily reading emails, but preferring the netbook for replies. I didn't read any books with it until earlier this year, and was surprised by how well book reading worked. I Skyped home.

When this new generation Touch came out, I got it as a matter of reflex, justifying the purchase on the basis of the built-in camera and built-in microphone (which means I don't have to use "inline mics" with ear buds any more). But in reality, the sharpness of the screen is MUCH more important. I have now, simply as a result of this device, switched to e-reading from print reading. On the road, this has largely displaced the netbook (except for reviews like this); most friends communicate in shorter emails these days anyway, and most emails are ads and blurbs, not stuff you need to reply to.

But now at home I find myself ALSO using this new generation iPod Touch a LOT. In the morning to check emails for anything really important, to check NYTimes headlines, before I even roll out of bed. Anytime I want to check emails or Facebook the rest of the day, without firing up the regular desktop computer. At bed to read.

In short, the darn thing is a working computer. Great for CONSUMPTION, patience-testing for INPUT. (Although forcing my input to slow down, say, for Simple Notes entries may be a good thing - forces me to slow down and be a lot more concise.)

***********A word on gaming and pricing. My kids have the 8 gb, 4th gen (this one) model and LOVE it for games. The motion detector is VERY responsive and watching a 3.5 y.o. use "dual thumbs" on the screen blows me away. You will NOT get the same screen responsiveness and motion detection on an Android device. Some developers are even reluctant to develop Android versions because the hardware for Android devices simply has too many variants in the marketplace vs. much smaller overall market share. This can change, but for now Apple dominates the gaming market. This week Apple is offering the Touch in 8 gb mode for slightly over 2 bills but with a 25 gift card. The value for dollar is incredible. Think carefully before you try to find a substitute! (FWIW I love Apple hardware but don't like the "locked down" system it has become - I hate having to use iTunes as "Grand Central Station" for Touch operations. So I am actually inclined to be biased AGAINST Apple, but in the case of the Touch the results are simply too good to ignore.)

***********Best accessory ever: ClassicReader Three-pair Valu-Pac, +3.00 The screen on this new generation of iPod Touches is very, very sharp, but in order to enjoy all that sharpness, you need to bring the screen really close to your eyes (assuming you don't have presbyopia and can focus close) OR simply carry a pair of cheap reading glasses as an "accessory" to these super sharp 4th generation screens. This lets you actually read the tiny type on the NY Times website, actually see the richness of colors and depth of detail on a video. So even if you don't need reading glasses for magazine reading, CONSIDER trying a pair of STRONG reading glasses (1.75, 2.0, 2.25, 2.5, 2.75, or even 3.0) to magnify the 3.5" display screen. Strong reading glasses make high-def YouTube, Netflix, and Hulu Plus videos POP for me.

My original review, edited to be slightly briefer, is below, so you will know where most of the pre-12/20 comments come from:


Can you get by with an 8gb Touch?

Yep, based on my experience with a 3rd gen 32 gb, and on my recent local purchase of the 4th gen (this current model) in 8 gb capacity.

When using the old 32 gb, I found out that I barely used its greater storage capacity. (I don't haul around a lot of music or videos - I just transfer what I want to listen to/watch for each road trip or listening/viewing cycle using iTunes). Apps, I discovered, don't take up much space, even games and books don't take up much space, unless you want to haul substantially more of your whole collection with you. Amazon's Kindle app is esp. device friendly, since you can archive books you've finished back to Amazon instead of keeping them on the device. iTunes is a great way to manage what content you want to store on your home computer - which becomes a sort of large "docking device" - and what you want top take "to go."

As a netbook substitute, storage isn't even that important. I can check my bank balance, transfer funds and execute orders on a brokerage account, listen to radio on Pandora or Slacker, watch music videos (and a lot more ) on YouTube, Skype, stream Netflix, and do a whole lot of other stuff on the 8 gb just fine.

In fact in hindsight the only real reason for me getting the 32 gb version in the older edition was to get the faster processor. But in the current generation, ALL THE 4th GENERATION HARDWARE IS THE SAME, except only for memory.

Do keep in mind on the 8gb edition you give up about a gig to systems operations, leaving only 7 gb or so for your stuff. And you need to leave from for apps and their space. I probably wouldn't put more than 6 gb of music and videos on the 8gb version. The other editions also give up the same space, but proportionately it is a smaller "hit" to your storage.

The 8gb makes a nice intersection on my personal "cheapness" and "minimalist" curves. The price doesn't get into nose-bleed territory where I start to wonder whether a netbook would makes more sense, and it's inexpensive enough to subject to the toils of daily wear and tear - keeping it handy in an outside day pack pocket, instead of more safely stowed deep inside the pack.
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on July 17, 2015
I can not activate this ipod. This shows me a message saying:

"Your Ipod touch could not be activated because the activation server cannot be reached. Try connecting your ipod touch to iTunes to activate it, or try again in a couple of minutes.
if this problem persists , contact Apple Support at"

I have tried different ways and yet I could not. I have 3 hours on this.I do not understand why I do not go easily.

Best regards.
review image
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on December 18, 2011
I previously owned either the 2nd or 3rd generation iPod Touch, but it decided to disappear on me. I'm still holding out hope that it will one day just turn up.

In any event, I bought myself the 4th generation iPod Touch. I'm even happier with this than with my previous iPod Touch.


Extremely Portable - I can take this thing anywhere. It fits nicely in my pocket and sometimes it's in there with my wallet or keys, and it does fine, with no scratches, etc. I don't even have a protective case for it...though I should probably invest in one. I can't comment on dropping it, because I haven't done that yet, at least not from a significant height or upon a very hard surface. And hopefully that won't happen. I have heard the horror stories of a cracked iPod screen. Again - see aforementioned protective case comment. The form factor is great. It is super thin and though it's slick, it doesn't slip out of my hands. My cell phone, which is much thicker and heavier slips from my grip all the time and has many little dings and bruises to show for it.

Display: It has a beautiful display. Very vibrant colors and very sharp. Much better than the previous generation iPod Touch.

Fast - The iPod Touch is quick - really quick. I can scroll among apps very quickly and fluidly. Apps open promptly and load times are very short. Exiting apps is very easy as all you have to do is press the home button and you're back to the main menus. The internet connection is also pretty fast and finding wi-fi connections is very easy. Load times for most web pages are very quick and because so many sites you go to all the time are available through their own dedicated apps, that makes getting to those sites even quicker.

Internet - As mentioned above, the internet connection is fast. And this thing is great at finding wi-fi connections. Take it to Starbucks and it will find the AT&T wifi without blinking an eye. It's receiver is strong too, so you could be standing outside a place with wifi, right next door, or even across the street from it, and still latch onto that place's wifi connection. Safari isn't perfect, but it's fine for browsing the internet. Also, I love the pinch to zoom and multi-touch display that allows you to zoom in and pan whilst on the web. The internet apps that you can download, many of them for free, are great. You can get Netflix, etc...and even the Kindle app. It streams video very quickly. You don't even need a Kindle to read Kindle ebooks. It's not e-ink (the iPod has an LCD screen) and the size is much smaller than a Kindle, but it's possible to read e-books on this. You can always adjust the text size if it is too small. If you get the iPod Touch, definitely get the Kindle App. Plus, if you already have a Kindle or an Android phone or something, you can sync any of your books and content to the iPod Touch's Kindle App as well. That's a great bonus. You can easily link this up through your web-based email account of your choice so that you can always get instant access to your emails (when connected to wifi).

Games - Because Apple offers so many great Apps and there are so many great free Apps and games, there is no shortage of great games. We aren't talking just Minesweeper or air hockey. You can get games like Need for Speed or EA Sports games on here.

Music - of course, being an iPod, you can download tons of songs of your choice. And it has a nice cover-flow feature which lets you easily sort through the full-color album or song covers.

Video - It's great at streaming video and you can buy videos to download directly to the device.

Management - Very easy to download new apps or to delete apps to free up space. Very easy to change basic settings, too. Has dedicated physical volume control buttons, too.


There are very few cons I can think of, except of course, if you lose it or break it. In that case, the biggest con is not having it anymore.

This is not perfect.

Battery life is probably its biggest downside. If you're reading an e-book, checking email, doing light web browsing, or listening to music, the battery does okay. But when you play a game, watch a video (streaming or otherwise), then this thing drinks juice like there's no tomorrow. Make sure you have some kind of portable charger or means to keep it charged if you are on long trips, etc. One tip: if you are not using the internet, turn off wifi, otherwise it will suck even more battery life because it is constantly searching for wifi connections.

Sometimes, apps will shut down without any warning and just kick you back out to the main menu. But it's usually not hard to get right back into the app. The biggest problem occurs if you are in the middle of typing a long email, etc. and it decides to kick you out. You can lose all your work.

For the most part the integrated touch QWERTY keyboard is quite intuitive, but also not perfect as typos are very easy to make. Also, as is well known about Apple products, word prediction is sometimes abominable. Just be sure to proofread what you type before saving it or sending it, otherwise you may inadvertently send something very different than you intended.


The latest generation iPod Touch is a great and convenient device with just a couple of minor gripes. It's great if you are on the go, on long trips, or are stuck waiting in line somewhere for a long time.

It's a great smartphone alternative. If you do not have a smartphone yet, then you may be able to hold out even longer if you get yourself an iPod touch. With so many places providing free wifi now, it is very easy to find wi-fi internet connections. Even many buses and maybe even trains have free wifi included. Obviously, you can't connect to 3G, so there is no internet browsing while riding in a standard car, etc. If you are just out and about, away from home or from somewhere else that offers free wi-fi, there is not internet connection. However, think about how often you really need the internet. Chances are you have internet access at home, work, as well as free wifi in many coffee shops, stores, etc. For those times when you don't have internet access, it shouldn't be too long or too difficult for you to gain access again at some point in the very near future during various intervals of your day. If you are a business person who absolutely constant access to work email, etc., then maybe you do need a smartphone...but chances are your work may already provide such a device. For the standard employee however, owning an iPod touch should preclude the need for a smartphone, which will only cost you a fortune (both for the device - some can be $600 or more without a contract or unlocked, as well as for the monthly data plans - which can be as high as $80 or more per month...for what? Why?)

One last point, the iPod Touch is not a phone and it's not a tablet. However, one can argue that it's just a mini iPad. Why then, should you pay between $400 and $600 more for something that offers no more than just a little more real estate?

Though it's not a phone, the iPod can be. If you take advantage of FaceTime, you can communicate with someone else over a wi-fi connection who also owns an iPod Touch or iPhone. Also, you can download Skype and make Skype calls. Again, you do need wi-fi for that, but this is handy if you want to call overseas with no major cell phone charges. I called my brother in China using Skype on my iPod Touch a couple of times while I was in a standard Starbucks in the U.S. My cost - $0. It's also great in an emergency, if your cellphone isn't working. If you have Skype credit, which isn't too expensive, you can call any land-line or cellphone using Skype.

The iPod Touch isn't the world's perfect device - yet...but it provides enough versatility to make it's $200 price tag more than worth it.

Also, for the casual user, you probably don't need much more than 8 GB, unless you plan to store and keep lots of movies, etc.
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on November 5, 2010
I purchased this for my wife's birthday and she loves it. Had no problems setting it up. Everything works great. The only criticism I have is the capacity. It is advertized as 8 GB. But as soon as you connect to the computer and go to iTunes, you find out that the capacity is really 6.5 GB. I thought this might be an anomaly unique to this particular unit. But when I started researching I found lots of other users of the 4th generation "8 GB" that had the same problem. There is no response that I could find from Apple. Some of the bloggers said the missing 1.5 GB is the operating system. But I found that hard to believe. While my wife is perfectly happy with it and unconcerned about the difference in actual capacity vs. advertized capacity, I would have gone ahead and got the 32 GB model had I known.
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on November 6, 2011
I bought this for my 11 year old daughter. I didn't realize that we needed a credit card/itunes card in order to download any apps (including the free ones) so I went and bought an itunes card the next day and everything was great. If you are not familiar with itunes or apple products, it can be a little confusing getting it all set up. After some trial and error, I got all of her music moved over from her old mp3 player. Once you learn how to operate it, it's great. It was well worth the money. She loved it. JUST MAKE SURE IF YOU DON'T WANT YOUR CHILD HAVING ACCESS TO YOUR CREDIT CARD NUMBER FOR PURCHASES, GET AN ITUNES CARD. They didn't even charge me tax at Wal-Mart when I purchased it.
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on December 14, 2010
As mentioned by many previous reviewers, this is another great product from Apple. It has wifi and blue tooth capability, two cameras, microphone and speaker for communication and even a gyroscope 'motion' sensor. I use my iPod for checking email (can setup even MS Exchange emails easily), browsing, checking google maps, keeping contacts, skype, taking pictures and videos (okay quality), transferring files and of course listening to music. You can download a number of apps (free or as cheap as $0.99) either directly using WiFi connection or through iTunes setup in your PC or Mac. The appstore allows you to search for free apps if you like. So, I like all the great offerings that iPod has as an entertainment and productivity tool.

The biggest con I haven't seen mentioned in many reviews is... iOS4 (the operating system used in this iPod & iPhone 4G) has multi-tasking capabilities. So applications that you open keep running in the background. There is no 'close' button for apps. Depending on the app, this can drain your battery pretty fast. Only when you turn off your iPod do these apps close.
*** So, How to Close Background Apps w/o turning iPod off? ***
To close apps, you need to double-click the home button. This would reveal a 'task bar' at the bottom that shows all running apps. If you touch and hold an app, all the apps get a '-' sign on top. touching the '-' sign would close the app. what a round about way to close background apps? Hopefully, apple would put a close button on apps in the next update of iOS.
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on February 13, 2011
Okay, so this is my fourth ipod, and I had a Mac when they were called a "Macintosh". I've been exclusively using Macs for about 15 years, but that's because I'm in "the arts" and it was the computer made for us (not so much anymore). Here are some things to keep in mind when buying iPods:

1) You can only use it on ONE of your Mac computers. I don't know about PC's, BUT even if you have all your Macs registered in your name, and your address, with your same credit card, and with Apple Care, you can still only connect your iPod to ONE of them. Choose wisely.

2) Amazon is WAY cheaper than the iTunes store. Save yourself a TON of money and BUY HERE AT AMAZON!! It's just as easy as the iTunes store too. Maybe even easier, because they're not trying to cram the latest Lady GaGa gag-me song or whomever down your throat.

3) When you download an MP3 to your computer, don't expect to have it on your next computer or your next. You MAY never be able to access it again once you change Macs UNLESS you take several steps to insure your transfer (that I have yet to figure out properly). I know you can hook up your new Mac to your old Mac and transfer certain things, but I really don't like cluttering up my new system with all the crap I'm trying to get rid of on the old one. Plus the OS is usually several versions newer. The iTunes store seems to "keep" your purchases, but since I can't even plug my iPod into my laptop without doing a "restore", I'm not sure how this is supposed to work. I'm probably missing something simple, but I don't want to jump through fifty hoops to listen to a song I bought five years ago. Some songs I bought from iTunes on my Mac (under the SAME EXCACT ACCOUNT), are now suddenly no longer able to transfer to my new iPod (yet, will still go on my older one). I have no idea why.

4) If you want to insure you keep your music collection for YEARS to come, buy the CD, then load it onto your Mac. I have bought the same digital albums multiple times because of buying new computers and ipods. I've gotten so sick of loosing songs, I've gone back to the old school. Plus, why pay the same for less? You don't get the CD that you can take anywhere. You don't get the artwork or any of the "extras". You don't get the track information (i.e. who played what instrument on which track, or who sung which vocals). Those things are rather important when you're talking about a band say like the Beatles, who were always using different instruments, and switching vocalists. Without the physical CD and the information contained within, you'll have no idea how awesome your music actually is.

5) People with PC's don't seem to have these problems as much, but I don't really know because I have three Macs with three different song libraries. I'm getting pretty sick of how grabby and greedy Apple has become.

6) I am NOT a computer or electronics expert in any way. I'm just an artist who works on Macs. So if anyone can tell me how to get my iPod hooked up to my other Macs, without having to erase all the previous data, and replace it with the other Mac's data, do let me know. I have about 200 songs I'd love to hear again.
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on November 26, 2010
I have used every gadget and gaming device known to man. I know my gadgets. And this gadget is very close to being perfect. As others have mentioned the rear camera is useless....yes it is. The quality is just awful. I use a DSLR to take pics, not my Ipod. Apple is not in the business of manufacturing cameras...see Nikon or Canon for that.

Ok on to the good stuff. The 4th gen is superior to the 3rd gen in every way. Much improved screen, better battery life, smaller and lighter, faster processor, microphone. My 4th gen will play videos the 3rd gen will not due to the higher screen resolution. Two thumbs up. It doesn't get better than this in the screen department and for a device of this size the screen is critical. Do not waste a second deciding between a 3rd gen with higher capacity or a 4th gen...get the 4th gen in any size you can. Personally for me 8gb is plenty. It will hold 5-6 movies, 20-30 games, a few hundred songs. I use my hard drive at home to hold my entire collection, this puppy is just for what I need right now and in the next few weeks.

I get around 5-6 hours of battery life. Tremendous considering its size. Would I like more? Of course, but that is for the future. Sound is good for a device of this size but you will want to use headphones for stellar sound. For games and movies the built in speakers are only adequate.

My only complaint is being forced to use Itunes. Itunes is sub-par in every possible way. I want to be able to plug this in and drag and drop my files. Too much to ask from Apple apparently. Jailbreak this device and it is perfect. 5 out of 5.

As a parent this device will keep your kids entertained for many, many hours. Movies and games aplenty. And this device is sturdy. Just be wary that some games are free to download but then you have the option of purchasing in game goodies with real money without having to put in your Itunes password. Another huge fail by Apple and Itunes. Buried deep in the menu is the option to disable in game purchases....dig deep it WILL be worth your can google the horror stories of 5 year olds racking up $100's in charges for their parents.

My 8yo prefers the Ipod to the DS and I prefer it to the PSP for gaming. Rage HD shows what is capable on this device and blows any PSP game to date out of the water. Plants VS Zombies...get and your kids will enjoy it immensely.
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on June 1, 2011
I've had my iPod for a little over 6 months and my whole family liked it. I used a lot of educational apps with my kids and liked all the ways I could use while running errands.

Yesterday, my son was playing games and announced that the battery had died. It showed the apple logo the way it does when it's dead, so I plugged it in to charge it. A day later he still showed the logo and had no charge at all. A web search has let us know that this is EXTREMELY common and there doesn't seem to be any good answer about how to recover it. Apple has instructions on how to recover it at iTunes, but that didn't work (and from what I've read online it doesn't work for most people).

I had vacation photos and videos that I hadn't downloaded yet which will now be lost forever. It's still under warranty, but I was told that I'd have to send it in and probably just get a new (refurbished) blank one in return. Since I hadn't synched it on iTunes, all of my apps and personal information are all lost.

I didn't synch it yet because I found out too late that if you download apps from two different accounts and then synch it on iTunes, it deletes all the apps that are from the other account. My husband had purchased a bunch of apps himself on his iTunes account on it and I had purchased my own, so once I synched it I would have to lose all of either his or my apps. I guess it would have been worth it in retrospect. I know a lot of things for next time.

In the meantime, I've lost all of my apps, my pictures, my videos, my personal notes, my pregnancy tracker info..... for absolutely no reason whatsoever. It just stopped working, and that's apparently typical. Six months of life is just not cool.
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