UK sees high street iPod discount as new models loom

August 11, 2010 1:26 PM EDT

Surprising no one but fanning expectation of new models all the same, a leading UK retailer is offering Apple's iPods at discount prices, with third generation iPod shuffles and fourth generation iPod nano models available at deep discounts.

Money Saving Expert newsletter reports that the sales reflect the new models of these products which it says it expects will ship next month.

The deals: Morrisons has confirmed that many of its stores -- those with areas the retailer calls, 'techno bars' -- will be offering 4GB iPod shuffles for just £20.

iPod nanos cost just £60 -- that's 40 per cent less than usual UK price. The deals are only available while stocks last with some stores already sold out.

I frequently see cut price iPod deals appear at third party retailers in the weeks before Apple refreshes its product range.

Amazon is frequently a good bellweather for this, but that retailer's prices remain as they were at time of witing. Amazon offers an approximate 10 per cent discount on most iPad models in the UK. However, it does offer the iPod touch at almost 20 percent off the usual price -- an 8GB model costs £124.99, as opposed to Apple's £152 book price.

Debenhams, Dixons and the Link are also offering iPod nano's for sale at similar prices to those offered by Amazon. No one is matching the Morrisons offer.

Amazon's US prices are broadly in line with its UK offers, but prices via the sundry US price comparison sites haven't yet revealed any bargains.

Aggressive end-of-line pricing last year saw Apple briefly offer its outgoing iPod models at discounted prices via its own online retail store.

Apple sliced between 10-25 per cent from prices of its outgoing range on September 9. This was unusual as Apple doesn't usually discount prices before introducing new models. The brief sale lasted only a few hours with the company announcing new models later that same day.

Right now, I'm anticipating the iPod nano may potentially become an iOS peer, offering limited app functionality along with video capture/playback.

The big news seems set to be the iPod touch, which we can predict will gain a camera, flash and use of the new A4 processor. This will allow the device to run the iMovie app, and transform it into a competitor for Flip.

The iPod classic and Macbook Air are also likely to see some upgrade. I no longer expect to see an Apple TV or iTunes in the cloud announcement at the next event. Recent rumor has pointed to an early 2011 schedule for the Apple TV, and I anticipate an iTunes video cloud service will launch in conjunction with that device as part of an attempt to build some momentum for the TV product.