I Just Got an iPod. What Should I Do Next?

A Beginner's Guide to the iPod

How to use an iPod

Justin Sullivan / Getty Images News / Getty Images

You're the proud owner of a shiny new iPod. Congratulations! You're going to have a lot of fun with your new toy. You might be asking yourself, "How do I get started?"

You've come to the right place. This article gives you quick access to all of the articles on this site that you need to get started setting up, using, and even troubleshooting your iPod.

How to Use an iPod

In order to get your iPod set up for the first time, you need to make sure you have the basic required software and accounts. After that, follow the instructions about how to use them to set up your iPod and get started.

  • You need iTunes to set up the iPod and to sync music, podcasts, and other content to it. Learn how to install iTunes on Mac or on Windows
  • You'll need an Apple ID to activate the iPod and to download content from iTunes to fill up your iPod. Learn how to create an Apple ID.

Setup Instructions

Once you've got iTunes and Apple ID, follow the step-by-step setup instructions for the model you have.

  • The iPod nano is small and lightweight. Yet it also includes useful features, such as a screen and impressive battery life, making it a popular choice. Learn how to set up an iPod nano.
iPod nano
herbert2512 / Pixabay 
  • Although it has no display screen, the iPod Shuffle is ultra-portable. Its size and light weight make it perfect for a workout. Find out how easy it is to set up an iPod Shuffle.
iPod Shuffle
 Yohanes.niko / Wikimedia
  • The iPod Classic features a large, widescreen, color screen. It even has the ability to display videos and even pictures, making it a longstanding favorite. Learn how to set up an iPod Classic.
iPod with earbuds and sheet music
 slightly_different / Pixabay

Basic iPod Features and Tips

Getting your iPod set up is, in some ways, really just the first step. Now, it's time to learn how to do all the things that make the iPod such an awesome device. There's an almost endless number of things to learn, but these articles will help you master some of the most common things to do with your iPod:

Screenshot of adding downloaded MP3s to iTunes
  • If you own your favorite music in CD format, you might want to move it to your iPod. Fortunately, iTunes makes this not only possible but even simple. Learn how to get songs from CD to iPod.
  • Another popular way to load songs onto your device is by purchasing it. You have multiple options, such as downloading a single song or springing for an entire album. Buying music at iTunes Store enables you to fill your iPod with the songs you are into.
  • Once you have selected and downloaded your favorite music, you don't have to listen to it all willy-nilly. Making your own custom playlists gives you control. iTunes provides a straightforward way to do so.
  • If you are concerned about storage space, put your iTunes library to work. Use Smart Playlists to optimize storage space. There are three methods, so you can choose the one that best suits your needs.
  • Sometimes, you want to hear something new and fresh. Using the iPod nano's FM radio allows you to stream your favorite stations. Headphones work as an antenna for your device.
  • You even have the option of listening to your iPod in your vehicle. The key is to use a car stereo adapter. Find out which iPhone car stereo adapter is best for you.
  • You might want to take your iPod wherever you go. However, constantly blasting tunes directly into your ears could have some effects on your health. Find out how to avoid iPhone & iPod hearing loss.

Advanced iPod Features

Once you have become comfortable with your iPod, you might want to dig a little deeper into what you can do with the device.

Teal iPod classic
Ruijia Wang / Unsplash
  • There seems to be an app for everything. There are apps available for most iPod models, but can you install apps on the iPod nano? That depends on several factors, such as what model you have and what apps you want.
  • Don't you hate it when you're watching a show and a commercial plays so much louder than the program? Avoid this annoyance when listening to music on your iPod. Learn how to use the soundcheck feature to play everything at a single volume.
  • If you got your hands on a 6th generation iPod nano, you have the benefit of the versatile clip. Although you might clip the device nearly anywhere, it's not helpful if the screen is sideways. Find out how to rotate the screen on the iPod nano.
  • Not sure whether the battery is running low on your Shuffle? There is a way to find out fast. Learn how to charge an iPod Shuffle to get this trick.

How to Solve iPod Problems

Just like any technology gadget, sometimes things go wrong with the iPod. When they go wrong, it's good to know how to fix them. If your iPod is frozen, it's likely a software issue. Find out how to restart an iPod touch, restart an iPod nano, or restart an iPod Shuffle and get it back in proper working order.

illuminated iPod with other electronics
insung yoon / Unsplash 


Want to get all the details directly from Apple? Find out how to download iPod nano manuals or iPod Shuffle manuals.

Go Even Deeper With Your New iPod

Want to really learn all the ins and outs of your model? We've got pages dedicated to some iPod models that collect how-tos, reviews, tricks, and troubleshooting articles just dedicated to your particular model, such as iPod nano and iPod Shuffle.