The Next iPod Touch Should Just Be An AT&T-less iPhone 4

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There’s a rumor swirling about that a revamped iPod Touch may be in line for Apple and that this particular model would feature a 5-megapixel camera on the back capable of shooting HD video and a front-facing camera that’s capable of FaceTime video chatting.

Good, great, grand. Regardless of whether or not the rumor is true, here’s what the next iPod Touch should feature, in my opinion. Ready?

It should be an iPhone 4 without AT&T. But wait! It should also have an AT&T option a la the 3G iPad. So the iPod Touch and the iPod Touch 3G. Everything but voice service, basically.

When the original iPhone came out, people went relatively ape about it but many of us were locked in what seemed like a never-ending contract on another network. A few months later Apple introduced the iPod Touch, which was basically a Wi-Fi version of iPhone, albeit much thinner and without a camera. I snapped one up myself because I wanted to see what all the fuss was about but I didn’t want to break my Sprint contract to switch to AT&T in order to get an iPhone.

So here’s what I’m thinking for the new iPod Touch, which will likely be announced in a couple months when Apple has its big back-to-school press event to announce new laptops, iPods, and the like. Just take the iPhone 4, strip out the AT&T stuff, and sell it as an iPod Touch starting at $299. Maybe make an 8GB version for $249, too.

Then like with the iPad, roll out the iPod Touch 3G. Charge a $100 price premium for the 3G connection, instead of the $130 premium with the iPad (since Apple would literally have to do nothing but shut off the iPhone 4’s voice features), and offer $15 per month for 200MB of 3G data and $25 per month for 2GB through AT&T exactly as it’s done with the 3G iPad.

It’s not a huge gamble for Apple. The company already has the iPhone 4 down from a production standpoint and the device is already thin enough that there wouldn’t have to be any change in design like there was between the original iPhone and the original iPod Touch.

We already know that the iPhone 4 contains roughly $188 worth of parts. Strip out the cellular connection and halve the storage to save some on production costs and sell an 8GB Wi-Fi iPod Touch starting at $249. Or leave the cellular stuff in there but turn off the voice channels and sell the iPod Touch 3G starting at $349. I’d snap up a 3G iPod Touch in a heartbeat since I use all of two minutes of voice service on my iPhone every month.

More on Techland:

Apple iPhone 4 Review: No, You Can’t Touch It

How to Stuff a Verizon 3G Connection into an iPad

Two Minute Video: Is the 3G iPad Worth the Upgrade?

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