When it's cold outside but you still have to walk to work or to class, bringing along an iPod and listening to music can be a double-edged sword. On the one hand, big headphones can act like nice, warm earmuffs that also happen to act as speakers; on the other hand, wearing gloves to keep your hands warm makes it very difficult to maneuver the iPod's click wheel. That's because the technology behind the click wheel is touch-sensitive, meaning it relies on electricity from the tips of your fingers to tell the system which song to play next. Most gloves are made out of material that blocks electricity, making it hard to select music without constantly removing them.
Several companies have developed special iPod gloves. These gloves do the normal work of keeping your hands warm, but the additional feature that makes them stand out, and useful for the iPod, is PlayPoint technology. Added to the tips of the index and thumb are small, rectangular patches that conduct electricity from your skin to the iPod's click wheel, helping you scroll through your playlists while keeping your hands warm, even in the coldest of winters.
iPod gloves might be a slick, high-tech fashion statement to make during the winter seasons, but the next accessory is exactly the opposite: It looks backward, and it's really more suitable for walking down the beach. To learn how an iPod accessory goes retro, read the next page.