From MacMinute, Newsweek has the new iPod on its cover. Other new sites are saying that Monday will bring the formal announcement on the net.
New features include a clickable scroll-wheel (a la iPod Mini) and smaller size (physically, not storage). It looks to be a rather incremental upgrade.
This is the second time Apple has made public new announcements in a major magazine before announcing them otherwise. The first time was of course when the iMac G4 graced the cover of Time magazine. It was in fact possible to find out about the new iMac in Time before reading it on the net (other than through sites that basically referenced the article in Time).
Apple may need to be more careful if they want to retain the same kind of splash announcements. Unfortunately, the net has made communication so instantaneous and anonymous, it’s nearly impossible to coordinate an announcement when print is involved. Inevitably, either people involved with the magazine will spill the beans first, or the net and radio/television will publicize an announcement before the print announcement reaches its audience.
I believe it’s for this reason Apple has been sticking to Internet announcements mostly. It’s fast becoming the ubiquitous source for news. One can visit any newspaper’s website for free, or even Google News which aggregates news (and even provides email alerts). One can also fire up an RSS client and find out literally minutes after the announcement. It’s a rather rapid evolution in news. It’ll only be a matter of time before RSS (or some kind of successor) is used by the general public.