I'm going to have to eat my words.
A few weeks ago, I opined that Apple would never market an iPod that supports FM, for the simple reason that users would end up listening to the radio when they could be browsing the iTunes store instead.
Boy, was I wrong. The new iPod nano not only supports FM, but also lets you pause FM broadcasts and pick up where you left off. You can even rewind and fastforward through broadcasts. Think of it as the TiVo for FM radio.
But this is where it gets really interesting: You can also tag songs you hear on the radio for subsequent purchase on the iTunes store. In other words, Apple has just turned FM radio into a huge sales funnel for iTunes. Brilliant.
The QNX Aviage Multimedia Suite also supports a lot of this functionality, btw.
I'm ticked that Apple still isn't bringing FM to the iPod touch, especially since my second-gen touch contains a chip that supports FM reception. And you would think that Apple would want iPod touch users to also tag FM songs for subsequent purchase. But on the other hand, I now want a nano as well as a touch. So, marketing-wise, maybe the folks at Apple are one giant step ahead of me.
It wouldn't the first time. Or, no doubt, the last.