According to a Chitika Research survey, 94.4% of iPhone owners are running OS 3.x. This should come as no surprise, being that OS 3 was a free upgrade for them and provided many welcomed improvements and features. On the other hand, only 55.24% of iPod Touch users are using the latest version on their devices. Why is this the case?
It's interesting to note that these numbers don't even begin to show the magnitude of this lack of adoption. For the past six months, all iPod Touches have shipped with OS 3 pre-installed, yet, OS 3 can only be found on a little more than 50% of the devices. This can be attributed to many factors, one of which is the cost. The upgrade for iPod Touch owners can be either $5 or $10, depending on when they purchased their device. The other problem is that OS 3 doesn't really bring many, must have, improvements to a music and video device, as its big changes are iPhone specific (MMS, push notifications, and tethering).
This could be bad for Apple in the long run, as the 2.x iPod Touch users are unable to take advantage of apps developed for OS 3.x. That means less money for Apple, as well as developers. The iPhone is not the sole market for apps. The company relies on the Touch for much of its app revenue. Apple needs to get more Touch users to adopt the latest version of the OS. To do this, they'll either need to make it free, or add something to it that iPod users can't live without.