Apple Pet Peeves: iTouch

I was at my old job when I first noticed it. The guy across the desk from me came into the office, all excited, carrying an Apple bag.

“What’d you get?” I asked.

“A new iTouch,” he said.

“A what?”

“An iTouch. You know, the iPhone looking iPod,” he says.

“You mean the iPod Touch?”

“No, the iTouch.”

That’s when I went and got my shovel and beat him into a small puddle.

OK, so that last part didn’t happen. But whenever I hear people talking about the iPod Touch, it’s almost always referred to as an iTouch. Somewhere in their heads, the “pod” gets filtered out of the equation. I spent some time thinking about why this is, and I can only come up with one conclusion: People are stupid.

Alright, so that’s not the only thing I came up with. Lots of people are used to Apple using one-word descriptors for their products. See: iPod, iPhone, iPad, MacBook, etc. Throw a modifier in there, and everybody goes wonky. But for some reason, this problem never comes up with other Apple products with multiple words in the title. Ever heard someone say they want an iShuffle? An iNano? No, of course you don’t. So why just the iPod Touch? I think it’s because of its similarity to the iPhone, and the fact that there are so many variations of the iPod right now that it can get confusing. That, and people are stupid.

Honestly, I’ve tried working this through, but that’s all I can figure out. Maybe there’s some other great conclusion that someone else has, but for me, that’s it. I’m tapped out. But it makes me physically angry to hear the product referred to that way be seemingly everybody. I swear the next time I hear it, I’m going to get a fungo bat and start swinging.

Mental note: don’t stop by the old office anytime soon.

Comments

  1. um… slow news day??

  2. Actually it’s the “iPod touch” with a lower case “t” not Touch with an uppercase “T”. Just saying…

  3. Oh man, I hate that one as well. A close second is people who use the word Mac wrong. “Does this work on Mac?” It’s A Mac, as in one Mac!

  4. noibs guy says:

    “People are stupid.”

    What else is there to say?

  5. I’m posting this on an iTouch!

    Seriously, everyone knows it’s officially an “iPod touch.” iTouch is just more convenient.

  6. Since I work in retail I hear this all the time, and I am just as annoyed by it as you are. There is another Mac that many people screw up, though. A lot of people tend to call MacBook Pros just Mac Pros (which as we know, but not many consumers, is a whole other product). Every time I hear someone say it (same as when they say iTouch) I simply say the correct name. I would love to take a shovel to those people, but I don’t want to get fired.

  7. You write:
    “Lots of people are used to Apple using one-word descriptors for their products. See: iPod, iPhone, iPad, MacBook, etc. Throw a modifier in there, and everybody goes wonky. But for some reason, this problem never comes up with other Apple products with multiple words in the title.”

    The “iPod” in ‘iPod touch” is NOT a modifier. I know you’re thinking that in that phrase “iPod is the adjective” and “touch” is the noun. Nope. That’s not it. The entire word is the proper noun. “iPod” in “iPod touch” is NOT a modifier but part of the name.

    • Kevin Whipps says:

      Actually, I’m referring to “touch” being the modifier, not the other way around. Thanks, though.

  8. Drives me crazy too. That and spelling iPod as Ipod. The one that really drives me crazy is people referring to all Aluminum cased Macs as having a “brushed metal” exterior or that pre-Jobs return Macs were “beige.” It’s a matt finish. No “brush” marks, then it ISN”T “brushed metal.” And the last Mac to have a beige case was the early Mac Plus. All the rest (including later Mac Pluses) were “Platinum,” a slivery gray color. Beige is brown.

    Ahhhhhh. I feel better now.

  9. I love this post! I had an argument with someone once because I was using my iPod Touch and she said “Ohhh, is that an iTouch.” I said nope and then the argument began. I finally took it out of the case and said “Look – right here on the back it says “iPod Touch!”

  10. Richard, Fritz, Matt, Eric: I’m assuming that you have last names. Does everyone in your life always use both your first and last names when referring to you?

  11. this is my very most favorite article in a long long long time…

    this is something that makes my blood boil…first of all…if the name of the product was suppose to be thought of as iTouch…then there would be a trademark in that name owned by Apple…and there isn’t…

    the product is named iPod touch…so when people come up to me as the Apple Expert at Best Buy and ask for something about the iTouch…I stop…and say never heard of it?…and then if they insist I then tell them that there is not a product made by Apple by that name…so I can’t help you with that…let me know if you need any other help…and I direct them to the amazing shinny and perfect 27″ iMac…and ask them to go to the Apple web site and show me the product they need help with…and once there I say…oh…ok…that’s the iPod Touch…I can help you with that…and then they feel stupid and I have not been rude or hit them with anything heavy like I really want to do because

    anyone that calls it an iTouch should be shot…it’s a stupid abbreviation and should never be used and as much as the iPad name doesn’t make people all too happy it’s no where near as stupid as the iTouch…lol

    besides you never know…the iTouch could be some totally different life changing thing that Apple may come up with next…they are on a roll..but I hate them making the brand look dumb cuz they are stupid…

    and what makes me even more angry is when bloggers use the wrong terminology for apple products…I mean come on…you are suppose to be experts…

    Kevin this is the best post all week…I’m sure some idiot will come in tomorrow and say iTouch and I will think of you and think of the baseball bat I wish I had in my hand…lol

  12. People aren’t stupid. Sorry — people are stupid, but this is not an example of it; this is just an example of pedantry being annoyed over shortcuts of convenience. People always shorten names of things they refer to frequently. Frankly, any commonly-referred to noun with more than two syllables will get a nickname – to expect anything more is akin to expecting every commenter above to refer to it as an “iPod (TM)”.
    With that in mind, let’s talk about your counter examples of other two-word products that didn’t have these problems. If everybody around you has always referred to them as “iPod Shuffle” and “iPod Nano”, you run in different crowds than I do. In my experience, people frequently shorten “iPod Shuffle” to “Shuffle” and “iPod Nano” to “Nano”. Even more frequently, the truncate both to just “iPod”. In the case of the iPod Touch, the former convention is out since using “Touch” in context is more ambiguous that “Shuffle” or “Nano” — “I’m using my Touch,” is way less clear than “I’m using my Shuffle,” even though both could theoretically be sentences without product names. As for the latter convention – many people who bought iPod touches do everything but listen to music on them. Since “iPod” is close to becoming the “Q-tip” of music players, referring to product whose primarily use is not as a music player as simply an “iPod” is not natural, either. Hence, when indulging in the natural tendency to optimize and de-cruft language about commonly-referred-to things, people have settled on iTouch. Since iPod touch is a product name, you can feel free to beat the head in of anybody who does this in an official correspondence, but if you expect people to use the clunky-ass name in casual, day-to-day speech, you’re going to be disappointed until such a time as we have an “Academie Anglaise” prescribing how English is to be used.

  13. I want to order an iPro, errr a Mac Pro I mean.

  14. Kevin, We the people of Planet Earth say we are supremely sorry that you have suffered in this fashion. There is no excuse for this transgression. It is stupid, abusive and very irritating. Kool Aid is being dispensed as I write this.

    But fear not, young man. No blood will be on your hands. We take total and complete blame for this.

    You, you are a beacon of light in a land of perverse, hate-filled suffering.

    PS. Your mother just called. Dinner is ready. Enjoy. Meatloaf, I hear.

  15. In Taiwan, where I got my iPod touch, EVERYONE calls it that. Even workers at an Apple store actually stared at me when I asked about an iPod touch. Until I sighed and re-asked the question using “iTouch.” “OHHHHH, an iTOUCH. Okay.”

  16. I’m so happy I’m not the only person who gets completely frustrated hearing ‘itouch’! I correct them and move on, buuut they always revert to itouch. The shovel is coming out soon.

  17. Right with ya man… bugs the hell out of me too.

  18. I bet those mofos getting macheted to death in Darfur are also enraged by this gross abuse of corporate branding.

  19. Touch devices are so pervasive that everybody now assumes that a device is touch controlled. Apple should just drop the “touch” and call it simply iPod. iPod nano isnt called iPod nano touch now that it has a touch UI. iPod touch is the main iPod so it should remain as “iPod” with the other variations having a modifier to their name: nano, classic and Shuffle (though the last 2 could and should disappear soon).

    A new trend is calling the iPhone 4 the i4 and i4S. Grrrrrr >:(

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