One of the things that makes the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad so much fun is their ability to run apps from the App Store. What about other iPods, though? Are they left out of the fun? If you own an iPod nano, you may be asking: can you get apps for iPod nano?
The answer is: it depends.
7th & 6th Generation iPod nano
When it comes to being able to run apps, the 7th and 6th gen. nanos have probably the most confusing situation. That's because these models appear to run a version of the iOS, the same operating system that the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad run (though that may just be an appearance; Apple hasn't said whether this is true or not). Add that to the multitouch screen and home button (on the 7th-gen. model) and you'd be forgiven for assuming they run apps. Though they run some apps, they don't run third-party iOS apps (that is, apps created by anyone other than Apple).
The 7th and 6th generation iPod nanos come pre-installed with a handful of apps created by Apple. These include an FM radio tuner, pedometer, clock, and photo viewer. So, based on that, we know that these nanos can run apps. However, as of this writing (Nov. 2013), these models don't support any third-party, non-Apple apps from the App Store and there's no jailbreak that allows unofficial apps to be added.
While some people expect that this will eventually change and some kind of third-party apps will come to the 7th or 6th generation nano (or both), Apple has given no official word on this so far. Given that the 6th gen. nano has been on the market since late 2010, perhaps it's more likely that we'll see apps on a future nano--maybe the 8th generation model in 2014?
3rd-5th Generation iPod nano
Unlike the 6th generation model, the 3rd, 4th, and 5th generation iPod nanos can run a limited number of third-party apps. However, these are not iPhone apps.
Instead, you can run a handful of games and study tools that were available at one time through the iTunes Store (not the App Store). These apps generally cost US$4.99. Apple removed these apps and games from the iTunes Store in late 2011 and, since these models aren't for sale anymore, it seems unlikely that they'll reappear. If you bought these apps for your nano in the past, though, at least you'll still be able to use them on models that supper them.
Now that these models are no longer made, though, don't expect to see new apps added to this list.
1st-2nd Generation iPod nano
These models can't run any kind of apps, neither iPhone apps nor the games that are compatible with their successors.