March 13, 2009 | Robert Nelson
The new iPod Shuffle and the lack of a control wheel is making for a whole new accessory market.
Personally, this sounds like a nice move, I have a Shuffle that gets used primarily for running or doing yard work, during which the in-line controls will be easier to reach. Of course, I am someone who actually likes the Apple earbuds.
Given that, those that prefer to not use the Apple earbuds are most likely going to be a little turned off by the Shuffle now. However, accessory makers are most likely going to love it. The first company to step up and announce a compatible set of headphones is Scosche. According to Kas Alves, executive vice president of Scosche Industries;
“We are delighted to support the exciting new VoiceOver technology in the 4GB iPod shuffle,”
Of course, that does not seem like a real surprise to me, after all it is another way for them to make some money. Anyway, sarcasm aside, the headphones are not yet available, they are expected sometime “this Spring” and will be retailing from $49.99 up to $99.99. Scosche does make nice headphones, but sadly at this price point you are now paying around double for your low-priced Shuffle.
Additionally, Scosche is also developing an inline control adapter kit that will allow any set of headphones to work with the new Shuffle. As of now, pricing has not been announced for this adapter kit. Although I would imagine it will be much less than the headphones.
Keep in mind, Apple has also stated that they will be releasing an adapter cable, but have not yet mentioned when it will be available, or how much it will cost. With the low price of the Shuffle, lets just hope the adapter, either from Apple or Scosche does not add much in terms of cost.