When Apple introduced the iPod Nano, the Mini was cut from the product line up. With the slim Nano came a flash based, color screened player with better battery life. Nanos flew off the shelf, and the Mini was a “has been.”
However, the Mini is having a second surge of popuarity. Devotees like the colored player, even if it has a black and white screen. Also the 6 GB Mini has 50% more capacity than the larger Nano.
What is Jobs to do? Look at the trend and build accordingly. I wouldn’t be surprised to see an 8 GB player available in colors to be introduced soon. Not everyone wants to step up to the 30 GB iPod.
There is now a solution for ipod mini-users. Seagate Technology has just released a large compact-flash type II+ hard drive called the CompactFlash Photo Hard Drive. Just as many once purchased a mini in order to remove the hard drive for digital photo applications, now you can buy a photo drive and use it to expand your mini’s storage. This works because the drive is formatted to the same ‘Fat 32’ standard that digital cameras and iPod minis use. Of course, you will have to tear open your ipod mini, much the way you would to replace the battery, but once you are in there, its simply a matter of unwrapping some tape and delicately removing a connector to the Hitachi 4GB drive, and replacing it with the Seagate 8GB Photo Hard Drive.