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iPod Touch vs. iPhone


Sep 11, 200742244Views193Comments

Update (Apr 11, 2011): This post has been updated to reflect the most current information on iPod Touch vs iPhone.

iPod Touch vs iPhone

Decisions, decisions: Should you get an iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4 or iPod Touch, a near-replica of the iPhone that works in generally the same way but has fewer features?

I own the iPhone 4, but I’ve done some research on both the iPod Touch and the iPhone for this feature comparison.

See how the iPod Touch compares to the iPhone in my iPod touch vs. iPhone overview:

iPod Touch vs. iPhone

Every feature on the iPod Touch is also on the iPhone. But not every feature on the iPhone is on the iPod Touch.

First let me show you the features iPhone DOES have, then let me show you what the iPod Touch lacks. Here is a breakdown of features for the iPhone 3G (no longer available from Apple, but available from other places used), iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4 and the fourth-generation (4g) iPod Touch.

Feature Breakdown:

*Note: Grey text denotes features common to all three models: iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS and iPod Touch.

iPhone 3G Features:

iPhone 3G

Software:

  • The latest iOS firmware, including the native apps: Messages, Calendar, Photos, Camera, YouTube, Stocks, Weather, Clock, Calculator, Notes, Settings, iTunes, App Store, Voice Memos

Hardware:

  • 3G Internet
  • 3 Megapixel Camera
  • Harddrive: 16GB or 32GB
  • Speed: 412MHz
  • Memory: 133MB of RAM
  • 3.5-inch (diagonal) Multi-Touch display
  • GPS
  • Wi-Fi
  • Cellular service (AT&T [GSM chip] in US, varies by country)
  • 10 hours video playback

iPhone 3GS Features:

iPhone 3GS

Software:

  • The latest iOS firmware, including the native apps: Messages, Calendar, Photos, Camera, YouTube, Stocks, Weather, Clock, Calculator, Notes, Settings, iTunes, App Store, Voice Memos, Compass

Hardware:

  • 3G Internet
  • 3 Megapixel Camera
  • Harddrive: 16GB or 32GB
  • Speed: 600MHz (up from 412 MHz)
  • Memory: 256 MB of RAM (up from 133MB)
  • 3.5-inch (diagonal) Multi-Touch display
  • GPS
  • Wi-Fi
  • Cellular service (AT&T [GSM chip] in US, varies by country)
  • 10 hours video playback
  • Compass
  • Rear-Facing Video Camera

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iPhone 4 Features:

iPhone 4

Software:

  • The latest iOS firmware, including the native apps: Messages, Calendar, Photos, Camera, YouTube, Stocks, Weather, Clock, Calculator, Notes, Settings, iTunes, App Store, Voice Memos, Compass
  • FaceTime video calls

Hardware:

  • 3G Internet
  • 5 Megapixel Camera
  • Harddrive: 16GB or 32GB
  • Speed: 800MHz (up from 600 MHz)
  • Memory: 512 MB of RAM (up from 256 MB)
  • 3.5-inch (diagonal) Multi-Touch display
  • GPS
  • Wi-Fi
  • Cellular service (AT&T [GSM chip] & Verizon [CDMA chip] in US, varies by country)
  • 10 hours video playback
  • Compass
  • Retina Display
  • Rear-Facing Video Camera
  • Front-Facing Video Camera
  • Camera Flash
  • 3-axis gyroscope

iPod Touch Features:

iPod Touch

Software:

  • The latest iOS firmware, including the native apps: Messages, Calendar, Photos, Camera, YouTube, Stocks, Weather, Clock, Calculator, Notes, Settings, iTunes, App Store, Voice Memos
  • FaceTime video calling

Hardware:

  • 0.7 Megapixel Camera
  • Harddrive: 8GB, 32GB or 64GB (double the available iPhone capacities)
  • Speed: Cortex A8, Apple chip
  • Memory: 256MB of RAM
  • 3.5-inch (diagonal) Multi-Touch display
  • Wi-Fi
  • 7 hours video playback
  • Rear-Facing Video Camera
  • Front-Facing Video Camera
  • Retina Display
  • 3-axis gyroscope

In summary, the iPod Touch runs on the same software as the iPhone, but LACKS mobile features like a cellular signal, GPS, data connectivity (3G/EDGE), and of course that pesky 2-year contract with AT&T, which is required to buy an iPhone.

The iPod touch is also thinner and usually cheaper than the iPhone depending on your agreement with your service provider.

Apple usually makes iPod Touch users pay $10-$20 for major OS updates, while iPhone users get them included as part of the service contract.

iPod touch is a great basic media device, especially for children. An iPod Touch is also great for “non-techy” people who don’t require a full-blown mobile computer and telephone with a mobile service contract. But if you want to go all out and you want the ultimate portable assistant, then go with the iPhone.

Keep in mind: Apple often issues major updates to both the iPod Touch and the iPhone, usually during summer, so it might be worth waiting it out so your new device doesn’t start becoming obsolete a couple months after you buy it.

iPhone vs. iPod Touch: What do you think?

What is your media device of choice, iPhone or iPod touch? Why?

Helpful Links

iPhone specs: iPhone | Apple Store
iPod touch specs: iPod touch | Apple Store

iPhone Price Drop: What’s Your Opinion?

UF Taser Incident & Why iPhone Needs a Video Camera

185 Comments

  1. Hey guy i think i will go for the ipod touch as it is cheaper and almost the same as the iphone plus no added charges like iphone. in the country i live we gotta pay like $100US just to unlock the phone so it comes up to $300US for the iphone .So i say ipod touch all the freaking way

  2. Hey everybody, I really want the iPhone, but everybody keeps saying just go with the iPod Touch. I am soooo confused!! Would somebody just tell me what is DIFFERENT about them. Please don’t go through the whole list, just say what comes with either one that the other one doesn’t. (I hope you got what I am trying to say! :) ) I really want the iPhone because I have been wanting a new phone. Except the phone I have now works perfectly fine. So, I don’t know. PLEASE HELP!!!
    Thanks!
    xoxo,
    Lane

  3. I like the way you have explained the feature of both phones however i would like to see your own person appinoiont of wich phones you would choose consequently i find i phone 4 s very good and price for 16gbs affordable therefore at the same time i pod touch is only £160.00 also £200.00 very close to the price of the i pod touch but because i am a huge fan of the company brand apple and that i phone 4s has alot to offer such as the voice speaker that you can talk to and the apps the graphics the camara, graphics also the game channel like the i pod touch has and they both have face time but i am very stuck and edvice on wich phone would be good for as i am leaving primary school on july 9th 2012 and starting secnondary school and i would like to know wich phone wpuld be good out the i phone 4s and the i pod touch so please if you could get back to as soon as possible asap please it would really benfit me on what choice i would make and help in futre so please if you could get back to me on wich phone would be thev most benfishial for me and mor3e modrenen thankyou yours sincerly, Mrkong5 / I PHONE LOVEVER

  4. The thing I thing is that the iPhone is better because u don’t have to have to have an app to be able to text and via at&t u can get unlimited calls moble to moble. I have the iPhone 3GS and the iPhone 4gs. Both better then the iPod 4 touch. The iPhone 3GS has a better speed and camera. Yes the iPod 4 touch has a front camera and the iPhone 3GS don’t. But the iPhone 4 does so really in facts the iPhone is better if u use it for what’s its meant to be used for and not just to have a phone. I use my iPhone for everything including work and it holds where the iPod doesn’t

  5. Sorry guys but the phone i have now is cruddy and I don’t want another peice of junk to carry around like a iPod touch…I amm going with the iPhone to save pocket space…

  6. I think i-Touch is batter then iPhone.
    i-touch–iPhone 4
    smaller–bigger
    cheap–expensive
    not heat up while use–heat up while use
    weight less–more then i-touch
    video> iPhone
    cortex a8 processor>apple processor
    retina display–not retina display
    more private(the person stand besides you cannot see easily what are you doing)–display same for beside person as you viewing(all angels no difference in display, may be its + point for you but not for me).
    no one tracing you–gsm network can trace you
    no problem if turned off–the person you are is offline(dad think you must be on date with girl)
    better display then iPhone.

      1. the iphone is way better than the ipod because the iphone is a phone and you can do more with it than the ipod

  7. Sigh, let’s try to end this “iPod vs. iPhone” debate here shall we?

    I’ll talk about the 4th gen iOS devices because there is no iPod touch equivalent to the newly released iPhone 4S.

    For starters in terms of actual functionally, the iPod touch can mimic every major function of the iPhone save the compass. How you ask? Well let me list them.

    1.) The Phone
    Here’s the biggie, iPod touch is fully capable of making phone calls
    and text messages with 3rd party applications, my application of use
    TextFree simply because well it’s free. However there are even more
    sophisticated apps such as Line2 that are non subscription and cost
    let than $100 for a year of service. Well one problem you say, I’m
    never in a wi-fi hotspot. Well lucky you because in 2011 we have
    fast 3G/4G mi-fi devices which usually cost substantially let per
    month than normal cellular contracts and allow multiple devices to
    benefit from you roaming internet.
    *A quick point the first 3 generation of iPod touch do NOT have
    built in microphones and the 1st gen device does not allow vocal
    input at all. I recommend headphones with mics for the 2nd gen and
    up but the 4g is capable of being used as a phone without them.

    2.) GPS
    Honestly using your iPhone as a GPS device probably isn’t the best
    idea but it will suffice if you must. Likewise with a mi-fi device
    iPod touch can perform the same function but a Garmin or the like
    would probably be the best choice.

    You know I thought there were more points I could make but I cannot think of any, the iPod touch really is the better way to go. Yes the iPhone’s camera (in terms of pictures) is better and yes it has a compass but honestly it’s camera still is no match for a basic digital you can pick up for little to nothing and the video quality on both devices is virtually identical. Oh and compasses are usually used in survival situations, not the best place to rely on a battery dependent, non water proof, easily damaged electronic device but it could come in useful, who knows.

    So really that’s all, if anyone else thinks of a valid point I missed please feel free to point it out.

  8. Just so you know you can get the iphone from Verizon Wireless… verizons better than at&t…

    1. So for all of you who are thinking of getting an ipod touch… DONT!!!! get the iphone 4S its soo much better. im 13 years old an i have both. And the Iphone has soooo much faster enternet! it takes me about a minute and 30 seconds to download the game. infinity blade. but it took me thirty secounds tops on my iphone 4S. true i pod can do txt free. But it doesent ring when someone is calling or txting u.

  9. get the i pod touch not the i phone if u want i phone youch u can get it but get the i pod touch first then get i phone

  10. i have an ipod touch gen 4 and i can do facetime web chatting,and there are great apps like textfree or textfree plus that for only 1.99 you can get over 600mins of talk time oh so it’s like a prepaid who cares,so Aren i read where you can’t decide on what to do get the ipod touch gen 4,now what gb you get is up to you the cheapest what i have works fine,it’s the 8gb,wifi,and all that you just read about up top.. then you can get a crappy phone that isn’t so much for when you are not around a strong wifi signal but then there are apps for that also.. i say go with the IPOD TOUCH..

  11. I thought this was very helpful, but I have a question, can you text and call for free on the itouch? and what is ‘OS’?

    1. The iPod touch cannot call. However, you can download TextMe, a free app on the app store that lets you text.

    2. Actually, you can but you’ll need to download either Fring or TruPhone. And of course headset (earphone + mic)

  12. so guys, i need to get a new phone, and i lost my ipod classic, and i’m about to leave for college. i love my music, and i need a phone, so would the ipone be better, or would it be cheaper to buy a ipod touch, and a crappy phone?.. also, would the iphone be available though other mobile services besides at&t? cause i hear that sucks
    Thanks

  13. If you got iPod touch 4g, it would be better . You can buy 3GS iPhone on Online which is used and still in good condition because as if you got normal sim card still work with any network. It’s no problem for you. I know camera is sometimes can be suck but you still buy Lumix camera is useful and dope scene. Peace up.

  14. Hi, my dad has an iPhone 3GS, and he just bought an iphone 4 today, he told I have to choose: my iPod or his iPhone… And now I feel soooo hesitant… But when I read this, it cheered me to choose the iPhone, but it just hard to get away from my iPod, and especially when the iPod will belong to my brother, AND NOT FOR ME :'( … I feel so bad! Pleeaase help anyone!!

  15. Has anyone tried Skype on either the i-thouch or i-phone. I am thinking about getting an i-touch if I can make Skype calls to freinds and families who don’t have skype. I hate ATT their customer service sucks, and their rates are stupid high. Just wondering if its better to go with an i-touch with Skype or an i-phone with a crappy ATT plan?

    1. i use line2 on my ipod touch. i use to use skype. line2 is so much better in clarity and you can also text with it. it much like the iphones. you do have to buy the plan which is 49.95 for six months can cancel anytime. you get unlimited calling in the usa and canada and texting. has push notification so if you don’t have it open it will let you know of text’s and calls. has caller id and call waiting and call forwarding included. i carry with me a mifi so i am connected wherever i go. i use the ipod touch 4 as it has the microphone built in so i don’t have to carry headsets. this is an amazing product, very clear just as clear as cell phones most of the time and no lag with it like skype. hopes this helps

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