Regular readers know that I am not a big fan of buying the latest electronics. For example, I still do not own a cell phone, use cable or have a wide screen TV. However, the IPod Nano was provided as a free gift for opening a UTMA account, which I was already planning to do. So technically, I didn't really buy something I didn't need :-)
For reference, the promotion did cause me a little more effort than normal for opening a TD Ameritrade account. The UTMA was not a standard account and I went to a branch office to make sure I did the application correctly. In addition, due to a backlog from the overwhelming response to the offer, my account wasn't actually created until after the deadline, which required me to make two phone calls to confirm I had qualified for the promotion. To TD Ameritrade's credit, they handled the situation very well. Although, my application as processed didn't include the IPod Nano promotion, the customer service representatives quickly corrected the mistake.
Today, I unpacked the IPod and began to use it. Having owned an Apple MacIntosh previously, I expected the IPod to be a plug and play into my HP Windows XP computer. So I ignored the limited instructions and plugged it in. Unfortunately, the current version of iTunes on my computer didn't recognize the IPod. After a half hour of frustration, which included a failed download of iTunes 7, I decided to finally read the instructions, which recommended first going to the Apple.com website to get started. Upon doing this, I was able to get the new IPod Nano to function correctly.
Other than the inauspicious start up, I have been impressed with the product. The product is very intuitive. I was able to figure out most of the functions (e.g. touch dial), without reading the instructions, and learned about more functions after reading them :-) It also has several functions, which I wouldn't expect -e.g. a clock. I have been able to download several albums and edit play lists using iTunes 7. Finally, the sound quality is excellent.
I can also see how the IPod may become an additional drain on the pocket book. This weekend, we noticed an abundance of IPod accessories (car adapters, portable speakers, clock radio docks) with costs in the $100 to $200 dollar range, some of which we think would be nice to have. However, we resisted buying them at this time:-)
At this time, I don't think we'll give into IPod mania; however, I will let all know if that changes. In addition, I'll let everyone know my impression of the IPod after using it a bit more in the next month.
For more on New Beginnings, check back every Sunday for a new segment.
Photo Credit: Apple.com
This is not financial advice. Please consult a professional advisor.
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