Having spent all of about ten minutes in an Apple store over the weekend (exiting quickly to avoid the temptation to buy a Mini), I’ve come to the conclusion that the most interesting thing about the Shuffle isn’t its lack of screen, or its “pull tracks at random from iTunes” feature, or its price point or its button placement. The most interesting thing is just how light it is. With other Apple products there’s the familiar heft – their relative density (combined with superior industrial design chops) make their products just “feel right” in the hand.
But the Shuffle is something else entirely. It’s light enough to be remarkably light. Ridiculously light, even. So light as to truly deserve the “wearable” label. Which is why I’m surprised they’re shipping with a lanyard instead of some sort of integrated clip (like some other flash-based music players). Lanyards would be great if headphones were wireless; otherwise you end up being a mess of cabling. A clip would be perfect – clip it to your shirt, your pocket, your bag strap, your coat collar, your tie even.