Button Guide for the 4th Generation iPod Touch

4th Gen. iPod touch hardware

Apple Inc. 

Because Apple doesn't release new models of the iPod touch as often as it does the iPhone, it can seem like the touch is often standing still. But it's not.

The 4th generation iPod touch is no longer produced

The 4th Generation iPod touch, shown in the photo above, introduced a number of major improvements to the device. While it doesn't have as many ports and buttons as the iPhone, it's still got a lot of hardware features to learn about. Knowing what each one does will help you get the most out of your iPod touch.

  1. Back Camera The camera on the back of the touch is the higher-resolution option on the device. This camera takes photos that are just under 1-megapixel resolution (960 x 720 pixels) and records video at up to 720p HD at 30 frames per second.
  2. Microphone This tiny pinhole located next to the camera on the back of the device is a microphone. It's used in recording audio when shooting a video, making a FaceTime call, or doing anything else that requires audio input.
  3. Hold/Sleep Button This is one of the most versatile buttons on the touch. You can use it to lock the touch's screen, which puts it to sleep. It also wakes up the touch. In addition, it's used to restart the touch.
  4. Headphone Jack Headphones, and some accessories like certain car stereo adapters, are plugged into the jack to the right of the Dock Connector.
  5. Dock Connector This connector is where you plug in the USB cable to sync the touch with a computer. Some accessories, like speaker docks, also connect to the touch here. This is the older, 30-pin port. Later versions of the iPod touch use the smaller 9-pin Lightning connection.
  6. Home Button The other most versatile button on the touch. The Home button is used for accessing the multitasking menu, restarting the touch, and quitting crashed apps. Clicking it also brings you back to the home screen from any app. When you're rearranging icons or deleting apps, it's also the thing that saves your choices.
  7. User-Facing Camera The second of the 4th gen. touch's two cameras. Since it faces the user, this one is especially important for use with FaceTime and when taking selfies. As is standard with Apple products, the user-facing camera is lower resolution than the one on the back. This camera can capture both photos and video at 800 x 600 pixels, and at up to 30 frames per second for video.
  8. Volume Buttons The two buttons on the side of the iPod touch let you raise and lower its volume. Volume can also be controlled from within most apps that can play audio.
  9. Speaker The speakers located at the device's bottom play the audio that comes from apps, whether it's music, video, or sound effects from games.

Internal 4th Generation iPod Touch Hardware

There are a number of other interesting hardware features of the iPod touch that are worth knowing. They're not shown in the picture above either because they're internal to the device.

  1. Apple A4 Processor The heart and brain of the touch is a 1 GHz Apple A4 processor. It's a solid step up from the 640 Mhz Samsung chip in the previous generation.
  2. Three-Axis Gyroscope This sensor lets the iPod touch understand how it's being held and respond appropriately. This is what's used for games that you control by moving the device itself.
  3. Accelerometer Another motion-detection sensor. This one tracks how quickly the touch is moved and in what ways. Another element of some of the cooler, more-physical ways of interacting with the device.
  4. Ambient Light Sensor Just like on an iPhone, this sensor detects how much ambient light is in the location where the touch is being used. If your touch is set to automatically adjust its screen brightness based on ambient light (a good idea to conserve battery life), this is the sensor that takes that reading.