Apple just announced they're discontinuing the iPod Touch. I'm surprised it hadn't happened earlier! Still, it's sad to see the end of an era for these devices which are effectively smartphones without the phone / cellular data connectivity. I still have my iPod Touch from 2014 that I use occasionally for FaceTime which aside from poor battery life and being stuck on an older version of iOS, it still works smoothly.
For the past two years, my audio solution has been a dedicated MP3 device. Since most of the content I consume I download and listen to offline, a dedicated MP3 device doesn't drain my phone's battery or take up storage space.
I started with the FiiO M5, which is like an iPod Shuffle. The device was great, but all it took was one drop for the screen to crack at which point I upgraded to the FiiO M6. The nice thing about the M6 is that the OS is a stripped down version of Android meaning you can side-load applications such as Spotify. The bad thing, the hardware can't handle (even heavily optimized versions) of these applications making the user experience frustrating. The touchscreen interface is great for navigation especially when you have large collections. However, since I only use the device for podcasts and audiobooks and don't get the benefits of installing streaming music apps, I'd be better off with a more affordable device like those from SanDisk.