You didn't need the tech package; even the Shaker 500 with SYNC would have the ability to control the ipod.
The other thing you'll have to get is a dash kit to replace/move your heater controls. I don't believe your conversion will be as cheap or easy as you seem to expect it to be.
Well, a decent 2 DIN + Scoche panel + pre-wired harness from Crutchfield is in the neighborhood of $600. That will give me all that I need; read as exactly what I want. The tech package was $1295 from Ford. Every post and youtube vid I've seen makes the swap look pretty easy, especially if you buy the harness. Most people posting about it start out with "I've never swapped a radio before...", and they get it to work. I did my first radio swap ever in my 2000 F-150 a few years ago, and forgot the ground wire. After 20 minutes of noodling around on a Sunday night no less, I called Crutchfield support, and they figured it out within minutes. Between them, and the collective knowledge of this community, I think it's well within my minimal skill set. It would be just a radio swap, with no speaker, amp, camera, etc... involvement.
I know I should probably upgrade the speakers as well, but at my age, after years of lawn mowing, weed wacking, using chainsaws, boating, flying small aircraft, and being around firearms, my hearing isn't the greatest. So, I don't really see a need to up the speakers.