iPod Nano May Have Some Big Problems

What some analysts have billed as the "top MP3 player this fall" may have just hit a potentially damaging roadblock - its own frailty.

Complaints have begun to circle on both Web logs and Apple's own support forums surrounding an issue with the polycarbonate plastic that covers the front of the iPod Nano. Some users claim the player scratches extremely easily, enough that it makes the screen difficult to read.

The problems have even led one anonymous Nano owner to set up a Web site to gather complaints of defects surrounding the diminutive player. flawedmusicplayer.com, was registered September 21 by Matthew Peterson of Hazel Park, Michigan.

While the site was originally created to demand some kind of recourse for what Park called a defect in the LCD screen that causes it to crack, in recent days reports of the scratching problem have become the primary complaint.

"My thoughts are that the nano is way too expensive to scratch so easily like this. In my case, the only thing my nano screen touched was the inside of my cotton shirt's pocket," a customer named Curt wrote.

Other users experienced similar problems to Park, with varying degrees of success in getting a resolution from Apple. "I have brought it down to the Apple Service Centre (and called Apple Customer Care Australia) and was told by them that this problem is not covered by Apple's warranty," a Nano owner named Ed wrote.

But some had their units replaced. "Went to the Apple store... and as clearly there was no sign of external damage, they agreed to replace the unit," Amanda from New York reported.

Microsoft even took time in an internal meeting with employees on the company's reorganization to mention the Nano issues. "I have to tell you that I did get the iPod Nano the first day it came out and it only worked one day," Windows chief Jim Allchin said. "True story. I think they have a moisture problem."

Apple has yet to make any public statement regarding the scratching issue or cracks in the Nano's screen. BetaNews had a request out for an official position on the matter, however no response was received as of press time.

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