Speculation continues to mount as the MP3-market hots up for Christmas in what has been a relatively quiet year so far for new Apple iPods.

Charles Wolf, an analyst for investment banking and asset management firm Needham & Company said he expects new iPod Nanos to match the new SanDisk player at 8GB and thinks we may also see a more video-centric portable player.

It's a view echoed by Chris Crotty of market research firm iSuppli. "My opinion is that by the end of the third quarter we will see a new flash-memory-based player with a bigger and better display than the nano. Then we'll see a hard-drive-based player with a landscape-oriented full-screen display," Crotty said.

Gartner analyst Mike McGuire chipped in suggesting Apple may have the living room at the centre of new plans. "There have been rumours about a home stereo replacement, something that may carry the iPod brand name or might not," McGuire said.

"I tend not to believe they haven't been hard at work on something new," he added.