Image: Alleged iPod Touch 4 parts
Alibaba.com
Alleged next-generation iPod Touch parts indicate that the device, due this fall, may have a front-facing camera.
Image:
By Wilson Rothman
msnbc.com
updated 7/8/2010 5:15:11 PM ET 2010-07-08T21:15:11

It's that time of year — after iPhone's launch but still a long way from Apple's autumn iPod push — when the iPod Touch rumors come wafting along the summer breeze. Will it look like iPhone 4? Will it have a camera? Will it have a front-facing camera? Jobs only knows.

This year's rumors are sparked by a sighting of a convincing-but-still-just-alleged next-gen iPod Touch part, spotted on Alibaba.com, a manufacturers' trading website. And, according to reports from AppleInsider and others, they're also fueled by talk of a U.K. retailer's holiday sales presentation, which mentioned an iPod Touch with a 5-megapixel camera and HD video.

Last fall, Apple burned some iPod Touch devotees by bestowing a camera only to its iPod Nano (a camera, I might add, that was only for video and was very low resolution). Because of that, it seems that the company will have to stick at least one camera inside the thing.

It also makes sense that the front-facing camera would work as well on an iPod Touch as on an iPhone 4, given the fact that the FaceTime video-chat software currently runs only on Wi-Fi.

(My own wishful guess is that Apple will have FaceTime inter-compatibility between iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad by early next year.)

But Apple also likes to ensure that the iPod Touch is an obvious step down from the iPhone. Giving it both cameras found on the iPhone 4 and some other rumored features, such as an accelerometer and gyroscope — along with the updated look (which is presumably a sure thing) — might make it too nice.

When I asked Apple to comment — hahaha, just kidding, I am not going to ask Apple about rumored iPod parts. They wouldn't say anything anyway. Unless some dude loses one of these sweet new iPod Touch 4s in a bar somewhere, we'll have to wait till Steve Jobs unveils them in a flourish-filled pageant, sometime in the first half of September. Until then, happy rumor mongering!

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