Offhand, I can’t agree. After getting used to using even the modest of click controls on the iPhone, it struck me how useful and convenient it is to not have to dig a device out of my pocket or try to hit the proper button and ONLY the proper button blind, through a jeans pocket, etc.?
Less of an issue with the shuffle, of course, since it’s made to clip conveniently somewhere so the buttons are easier to access… but even so, how many of us actually clip a metallic dongle somewhere on our person? I’ve found most people seem to get embarrassed just by dangling earphones.
Did the shuffle need it? No. But putting controls on the headset is still a good idea. And what else could Apple do to update the shuffle…?
It is problematic mainly in that VoiceOver is “neat” but not precisely a technological leap, nor a real advancement in how to manage ~1000 songs properly. And that as a result, the “new feature” doesn’t precisely outweigh the earphone limitations. Many people want to use their own (though I imagine far fewer shuffle users care about doing so), and will now have to wait for 3rd parties to pick up yet ANOTHER new control clicky on their models. (Sadly, an adapter cable doesn’t solve things, as it’s a PITA to deal with extra cord length.)
What WOULD have made this much more of a treat…? If the headset had a mic (so you could use it for iPhones as well… because why not?) and VoiceOver included voice commands to boot. A quick click and telling your shuffle to play a particular album…? Now THAT would be worth getting excited over! Not to mention it would make a perfect test bed for features that would obviously be in much demand for the iPhone.
Unfortunately, the refresh doesn’t strike me as being as notable or useful, even though I appreciate moving controls onto the headphone wire. (Provided they don’t make the headphones more prone to breaking, which we’ll have to wait and see. That’s always been the biggest issue I find with headphones/mics of all sorts that include controls on their wire… an extra failure point.)