Apple posted a user guide for the fifth-generation iPod touch to iBooks early this morning, indicating a retail launch for the device is coming sooner rather than later. Apple promised an October timeframe for preorders of the device shipping from its Online Store, but today we get word from readers that Apple is now shipping orders of the fifth-generation iPod touch, as well as the new iPod nano, with delivery expected early next week. The shipment notice above comes from a user in the United States with an expected delivery date of Oct. 15, but international users have reported receiving notices as well. The image below shows an expected delivery date of Oct. 15 from an Australian reader, while the new iPod nano is still listed as preparing for shipment. Yesterday, Apple started shipping orders for the 30-pin to Lightning adapterThanks, Penpal1278!

It also appears that Apple started to sell the new iPod touch and iPod nano in at least some of its retail locations:

Macotakara posted a couple unboxing videos for the new iPods, revealing the fifth-gen iPod touch comes with Apple’s new EarPods equipped with remote and mic. The earphones packaged with the new nano’s still lack any physical controls but do include the new EarPods design: