The fourth generation Apple iPod is expected to be available in Australia from today, with the 20GB model on offer for a recommended retail price of AU$499 and the 40GB model for AU$649.
The portable digital music player -- news of which was unveiled yesterday -- is advertised to feature "Apple's patent pending click wheel", allowing for single handed navigation through the device, up to 12 hours battery life and a shuffle song mode that plays songs randomly from the music library.
Apple chief executive officer Steve Jobs stated in a press release issued today that the fourth generation's design is "even smaller" than the previous and "puts up to 10,000 songs in your pocket".
"The best digital music player just got better," he said.
The iPod and iTunes has been chosen by Hewlett Packard to be integrated into its "digital entertainment strategy", according to HP chairman and CEO Carly Fiorina.
"HP's version of the new iPod will be available in September," she said.
The iPod can download two songs per second, according to the release, and also features Apple's "auto-sync technology" that is designed to automatically download and update an entire music library onto the iPod whenever it is plugged in to the users computer.
The machine requires the users to have either a Mac with a FireWire port and Mac OSX or later operating system; or a Windows PC with a FireWire of USB port (or a Windows-certified FireWire or USB card) with a Windows 2000, XP Home or Professional operating system.
The iPod is available through the Apple Store (www.apple.com.au/ipod) and authorised Apple resellers.
The iPod package includes earbud headphones, 1.2m 30-pin to FireWire cable, a 1.2m 30-pin to USB cable, and a CD with iTunes 4.6 for Mac and Windows computers.
The 40GB model also includes an iPod dock.