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Maggie Shiels

Time for an Apple rumour

  • Maggie Shiels
  • 14 Aug 09, 08:22 GMT

Those in the news business doesn't refer to August as "the silly season" without good reason.

Generally speaking, there is less news around and all sorts of nonsense fill the vacuum. Cue the latest Apple rumour campaign. What's next from the men at Mac?

The clever money, for what it is worth, is on some form of announcement about the iPod and/or iTunes on 7 or 8 September. One reason for betting on a music-related development is that music industry sources have said they have been given the heads-up on an Apple keynote.

Before you shoot the messenger, this rumour would certainly seem to hold some sway because Apple has, in the past, used the week after Labor Day to show off its new wares.

As All Things Digital noted, last year it was an overhaul of the iPod Nano and the year before, it was the introduction of the iPod Touch.

This probably lays to rest, at least for a while, the hopes and dreams of some that Apple is set to unveil its so-called "iTablet" or "iPad". Despite the clunky names, the device is believed to be a touch-screen device that is supposed to be a hybrid of the iPhone and a MacBook laptop.

And please note this keynote event will come just one week before Microsoft launches its new Zune HD.

Whatever Apple does or does not introduce at the beginning of next month is of course beside the point because all eyes will be on the presenter at the event. And there is a good chance that Steve Jobs will be back centre-stage for his first public appearance since returning to work after his six months long medical leave of absence.

The digerati will be straining at the leash to get a good look and to assess how well Mr Jobs looks now that he is back at his day job. Me included.

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    Souped up iPod Touch based on the iPhone 3GS. New music file format wrapper to include full album artwork, lyrics, etc. A new iTunes streaming jukebox service.

    No tablet, unless Steve wants to mark his comeback with a very big 'One more thing...', but I've yet to see a convincing business case for one, i.e. what would it be for, who would buy it, what strategic advantage does it give Apple???

  • Comment number 2.

    Awesome.

    Since the latest round of posts we've had MS Word being banned in the US, reviews of W7, Facebook's acquisition of Friendfeed, Gartner's quarterly smartphone stats published, the Zune HD going on pre-order (which at least you sort of mention) and a host of other things and yet here you are with a rumour.

    As Rod the Mod would say "Wake up , Maggie. I think I've got something to say to you."

  • Comment number 3.

    My money is on Mr Jobs looking like he did before, only a little peaky. I'm not a doctor though.

    I'd love an iPad. if one ever exists.

  • Comment number 4.

    This rumor seems to have been dismissed before you even posted this! This iTablet is coming but won't be officially announced till next year.

  • Comment number 5.

    Am I the only one who doesn't get tablet devices? This isn't an anti-Apple comment.

    I just think tablet devices are a novelty device that company directors get and use for about 10 minutes before becoming bored... Worse still I have had to start rolling out netbooks to directors and they are complaining about the speed of them... All I can do is keep thinking to myself "I told you so" but can't say it out loud as not to rock the boat.

    I have a great idea for novelty director toys. Get a mirror and line it up with the sun or another light source and move it around on the wall. This way the directors will be so distracted by the little light dancing around the walls for so long they will forget about tablets and netbooks. If this fails try the piece of string dangled in front of them and they will try to catch it whilst giggling to themselves.

  • Comment number 6.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 7.

    Did these rumours come from Twitter by any chance?

  • Comment number 8.

    Or did this rumour of a netbook come from the pages of the current issue of Macworld (September 2009 issue, p.17) - "Mac netbook coming soon"? Although that article suggests an October release, and reiterates Apple's historic dislike of such products.

  • Comment number 9.

    Isn't Twitter a little Passé now - it's certainly very boring. Unlike Apple rumours which are in the most part quite fun as the bashers get to let loose.

    ..... Zune HD - now that WOULD be interesting to see how well that is received.

  • Comment number 10.

    neilephipps, you don't know the half of it!

    But you have to hand it to Maggie. She didn't mention Twitter once in that article. Sure, it's about her arguably second-favourite tech toy company, Apple, but at least Apple really do matter, and really do produce a lot of very tangible, very useful items of technology.

  • Comment number 11.

    synthil

    I need to know what half I'm missing.

    Apple are VERY important - thats why I love these blogs.....

  • Comment number 12.

    Stuff this, I'm really looking forward to the day Apple finally invents the tablet computer........

  • Comment number 13.

    I hope they are smart enough to kick out an Apple iPad. If not what else will drive their sales, not music, or web services.

    I have seen many mentions of what the Apple iPad would have. Music, Internet, High Def screen for watching movies, possible tie in for using wireless keyboard and wireless data servers in the house, and most of all a 10" screen where most of the space is usable and a thin, access to skype for telephone calls or web conferencing (who wants to do this on the tiny cellphone screens), truly a tablet design. I have owned tablet pcs, laptops, netbooks, an iphone, etc. Always too bulky or too small. That's why I have stuck with either the phone or a notebook.

    The cross over here is a very thin real tablet size device, sleek, easy to use on the web, easy to watch movies on your breaks or on the airplane, and of course, if tied into a telephone carrier as rumored, reasonably priced.

    If they put out a good product it will sell. Don't believe me, run down the rumored specs then poll, if Apple put out a device like this would you buy it?

    Best m@appleseek.com

  • Comment number 14.

    So they might be releasing something that is another iteration of their existing products but incorporates some more existing technology in a way that people who are worried about form over funtion will find appealing.

    Big deal. Move on. Next news item please.

    Actually don't the next news item is probably about Twitter.

    It's a shame Maggie can't do a blog on the Technology headline of today (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/8201332.stm), too busy twitting on her iPhone whilst playing Dr Kawashimas Brain Drain I suspect.

  • Comment number 15.

    @nielephipps,

    The 'half' concerning her overzealous blogging about Twitter. You rightly said it was 'passe'.

  • Comment number 16.

    ...a tablet laptop. Big deal....I could buy a tablet laptop tomorrow if I wanted....

  • Comment number 17.

    Even the fake rumours about Apple are of them simply reinventing an existing idea. Apple doesn't innovate. It takes existing items, puts them in shiny cases, and markets them like mad.

    Don't get me wrong, the products usually are high quality (after a generation or 2), and they work hard on their interfaces, but they're no more innovative than the average hardware company.

    So why no blog posts about actual technology news that has really happened? Lots has happened in the last few days.

  • Comment number 18.

    I think it would have to be in the form of a traditional tablet PC, with a keyboard that flips over to become a flat tablet. I can't see anyone buying a device with no keyboard, just for web surfing. Very expensive for what it does. Maybe if it had a freeview tuner and a stand, it could be used for TV, as well as movies. Honestly though, unless it's less than £400 it will be another Apple Cube.

    Still for all Bill Gates' talk of touch being the next big thing, maybe it will be his nemesis Apple, who made the mouse commonplace, taught us we didn't need floppy disks and introduced multi-touch, who will make touch the norm in desktop computing. The PC industry offers superb value for money, but is very conservative about trying new ideas. Can you imagine HP releasing a tablet like device?


    Oh, @horreur please kindly go away. The comments section on blogs are not for people like you to air your personal dislike for the author, but to discus the contents of the article.

  • Comment number 19.

    Maybe they will announce the production of Elite for the iPhone.

  • Comment number 20.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 21.

    18. At 11:34am on 15 Aug 2009, blade82 wrote: "Still for all Bill Gates' talk of touch being the next big thing, maybe it will be his nemesis Apple, who made the mouse commonplace, taught us we didn't need floppy disks and introduced multi-touch, who will make touch the norm in desktop computing. The PC industry offers superb value for money, but is very conservative about trying new ideas. Can you imagine HP releasing a tablet like device?


    Oh, @horreur please kindly go away. The comments section on blogs are not for people like you to air your personal dislike for the author, but to discus the contents of the article.
    "

    ----

    I thought IBM made the mouse commonplace and taught us we didn't need floppy disks? I certainly don't recall Apple making the PC that is now commonplace.

    And do HP not make tablet PCs? I thought they had several models labelled as Tablet PCs? The HP Compaq 2710p springs to mind as an example.

    And what exactly is in Maggies article? Not a lot from what I'm reading.

    Unsubstantiated rumour is the best description of her article.

  • Comment number 22.

    1. The floppy disk was already entering its death throes when Apple dropped it from their new computer. Less setting the agenda, more responding early on in a trend.
    2. The credit for making the mouse commonplace goes to Xerox.
    3. HP released a tablet computer range years ago! You know, years before Apple decided to think about working on inventing it some time in the near future.
    4. To date there have been at least 15 slate tablets, from the likes of Fujitsu, Samsung and Panasonic, and at least 50 convertible/hybrid tablets including from Dell, Asus, Acer and HP. But they'll be wiped from history when Apple eventually catch up and "introduce them to consumers" - just like the LG Prada has been airbrushed out.
    5. Multi-touch existed for years before Apple invented it (sic) and the iPhone wasn't the first commercial device to use it. Apple only caught up with other users of the tech when they bought out a company called Fingerworks......

  • Comment number 23.

    Incidentally, I have a BBC Monitoring brochure on my desk at work. On its shiny cover is pictured every type of day-to-day consumer entertainment device you can think of (well, almost...). Desktop computing is represented by a Mac Pro *and* a Mini. The laptop is, what else, a MacBook. PMPs are represented by an iPod Touch, naturally. And there's the iPhone, of course. There's even an Apple TV unit pictured (one of only 26 ever manufactured!). Television apparently isn't worthy of representation but a shiny iMac panel is shown streaming a BBC News 24 feed! Sadly, there's no space left for a Sony Vaio, or a Panasonic Viera, or a Nokia N90, or a Creative Zen, or a Dell XPS, or an XBox 360, or a Sky HD box, or a Pure DAB radio, or Freeview ......

    But remember, the BBC is NOT Apple obsessed!

  • Comment number 24.

    I think it is safe to say the BBC is, whether by accident, by association or by commercial bribes, absolutely obsessed with the culture of brands and fashion.

    If your product cannot be summed up by tangible public sympathy and a cutesy appeal, don't expect BBC journalists to turn up at your press release.

  • Comment number 25.

    blade82:[Apple] taught us we didn't need floppy disks.

    Speak for yourself. I stopped using floppy disks without needing Apple to "teach" me anything.

    Floppies were already on the way out and what Apple marketed as a bold step and an example of "Think Different", was an obvious decision to make.

  • Comment number 26.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 27.

    I just like knowing that my money's going to Paul McCartney. WHAT! Oh pants. I was wondering why I couldn't find any Beatles songs on iTunes!

  • Comment number 28.

    The rumours of the birth of an iPad are highly exaggerated. An iPad can be born, quite easily too. But would you love fingering the screen all the time, and importantly accept that your screen real-estate is shrunk by all kinds of on-screen-keypads all the time? An iPad that you would use to only watch videos and listen to music could use the screen as an input device. And btw, such a device exists - it's called the iPod :-) However, if you would want to send email and blog your way to glory, an un-compromised screen is a no-brainer. Unless of course Apple (or somebody else) invents clever methods of using the screen as an input device without compromising the content real-estate. Seems unlikely to happen this Sept. But I'd love to be wrong.

  • Comment number 29.

    I'm hoping the announcement will be an iPhone at reasonable price in the UK. In the US you can get one for $99, here it's £299.

  • Comment number 30.

    29. At 12:19pm on 17 Aug 2009, aardfrith wrote:

    I'm hoping the announcement will be an iPhone at reasonable price in the UK. In the US you can get one for $99, here it's £299.

    -----

    Wow! That's £60. Why is it that the US gets things such as technology cheaper than we in the UK? Is the cost of living that much different?

    Would Maggie (or Rory) care to do an article/blog on that as her next blog entry?

    What gets me is there are people that buy iPhones at £299, are we the UK public so oblivious to the costs across the pond of technology that we'll buy anything at any price.

    Oh wait of course we are, we buy Apple products...

  • Comment number 31.

    "" who will make touch the norm in desktop computing""

    Oh god, I hope not. Tactile response is superior and far more accessible.


    Why doesn't Maggie do an article on freakin' DNA in silicon? I demand my TV license be put to replace Maggie with someone who is truly on the ball with technonews!

  • Comment number 32.

    @RevolutionBlues: I appreciate your frustration when it seems there is Apple news all around you, but you are falling for the marketing trap of breaking down products into a laundry list of features and dismissing Apple because you can find prior art for each feature. Yes it's true that Apple invent, borrow, buy and steal a great variety of tech, but isn't that true of all the companies that you mention?

    What Apple have managed to do is create products that are greater than the sum of their features with an ease of use that generally appeals to those such as myself, who don't appreciate the feature-fatigue and configuration headaches that are often associated with rival products. Unfortunately there is no check list item that can cover this quality, and so comments made in favor of Apple products can appear a little faith based.

    Are the BBC biased? Possibly, but so it seems are you - and anyway that would be another argument entirely.

  • Comment number 33.

    "Are the BBC biased? Possibly"

    That kind of apathy allows BBC to turn itself into the commercial advertisement service that is now certainly is today. Thanks for perpetuating that.

  • Comment number 34.

    Soap-Box-Kid, suggest you look up "television licence fee" and "public service broadcaster". Seemingly myopic iWorship from Gizmodo and Engadget I can put up with. From the BBC? Not so much.

    And by the way, yes, those other companies do the same. The only difference is that the BBC and other media organisations don't post articles when somebody at one of those companies sneezes or picks up a draughting pen. Tomorrow is one of the biggest days of the gaming year, possibly one of the biggest for many years, with Sony widely expected to announce some pretty huge things. Where's the article? Where's the blog entry? (And yes, this blog covers gaming.) But Apple is rumoured to possibly be working on one day bringing out a type of device which you've already been able to buy from at least ten manufacturers for several years and it's like Xmas for tech journalists the world over.

  • Comment number 35.

    @synthil and @RevolutionBlues: you both obviously feel very strongly that the BBC is biased in its reporting on all things Apple and (at a stretch) I share your conclusion - although I think it's more because Apple are the flavor of the month all over the net rather than any brand of favoritism. After all even public service journalists have to attract eyeballs to their columns don't they?

    I'm afraid I just can't summon the passion for defending the public service remit of the BBC. However if this issue really is of particular importance to you, then how about categorizing the last 6 months worth of blogs by type (Twitter, Microsoft, Google, Apple etc)? It would certainly illuminate this discussion and give your arguments credibility if you could back them up with facts.

  • Comment number 36.

    Oh, believe me, we have. The amount of disproportionate Twitter coverage, for example, has been widely condemned by not just me, but many, many others, regular commentors and not-so-regular commentors.

    Apple is a big company, but so is Dell. HP. IBM. Apple gains coverage here, not just due to their fashionability, but because they are pretty. That's all. Most laptops and other gizmos from the other aforementioned companies, even if they are cheaper, more powerful, made from stronger material, and generally superior in technological terms, simply aren't that nice to look at, and as such, do not gain coverage. Which is not only a direly inaccurate reflection of the real technology market, it is also patent favouritism.

    If Apple were to design their products with cheap, cream-coloured, concrete-shaped blocks of plastic, without any pleasing aesthetics, they would have crumpled within a matter of years. They would be no more. You can declare your preference for Apple based on the quality and performance of their products, but fundamentally, Apple has boomed under the technological immateriality of beauty. Fashion, not technology.

  • Comment number 37.

    I've been waiting for this rumored Apple Tablet for a while now. As long as it was powerful enough to run the Adobe suite and I could physically draw on a pressure sensitive screen in Photoshop or Illustrator it'd make my life so much easier (it'd also make my Wacom tablet redundant).

  • Comment number 38.

    Hi @synthil, you make a couple of arguments. First of all with regards to the BBC you still haven't provided an (objective) assessment of the last few months blog entries so how am I to be convinced that there are excessive column inches devoted to Apple? Although I partially agreed with you when I started these posts, I've had a quick check myself and it seems Google, Twitter and Apple all stand out, which is in line with current trends in tech. In fact a reporting strategy that deliberately suppresses newsworthy items would ironically indicate a level of bias in itself and whether you like it or not, a new beige box from Dell in an already saturated market is not newsworthy. Are there any HP or IBM stories that you feel didn't receive the coverage they deserved?

    With regards to Apple I would have more confidence in your opinion if you could show you'd also used Apple products for any length of time, but as it is you take the reductionist view that the whole is equal to its check list of parts. It seems we both agree that Apple put a lot of thought into the appearance of their products, but please don't judge a book by its cover - it would be a little like going up to somebody and saying "you're really good looking so you must be thick". Open up any iMac and you will find a minor miracle of engineering - beauty is not skin deep! The OS may seem a little strange at first but it's 100% rock solid Unix. And there's a lot of well thought out software available for it too - my personal favorites are Firefox, GarageBand and TimeMachine.

  • Comment number 39.

    Personally, I do feel that Apple has had considerably more blog space than its competitors, though nowhere near the level that Twitter has.

    Personally, I have no desire to own an Apple computer, as they are overpriced. However, some of their media editing software is world class.

    Soap-Box-Kid, computers are rarely beige these days. Personally I find some of the Dell XPS computers more appealling to look at than an iMac, or the Acer Predator or the huge number of custom built PCs. Secondly, with regards to oversaturation, surely Apple are in the exact same boat: potentially entering a new product into a market with sufficient alternatives. Furthermore, Firefox is not Apple related at all (Apple has Safari) and works on Windows and Linux. As for a minor miracle of engineering, Apple uses Intel processors (like most other PCs) and uses nVidia gpus (like a good many PCs - not sure what the stats are for nVidia/ATi/integrated solutions etc). There are many PCs that will outperform an iMac, especially as I don't believe Apple use the Core i7 yet though I could be wrong.

  • Comment number 40.

    We all know the BBC website is biased.

    You've only got to look at the HYS section and the way it works to know that. No discussion on important issues such as the recent rail strikes, or the postal strikes, instead we get highly important topics such as "what sports should be in the olympics", and all posts are pre-moderated and any that don't appear to agree with the BBCs current "line" are not published. The blogs are the same.

    Then there is this blog, which over the past few months has been twitter, twitter, twitter, twitter, twitter, microsoft, apple, twitter, apple, apple, apple, twitter, spinvox, apple, twitter, hull is heaven, apple, twitter...

    Twitter has even spilled over into Nick Robinsons blog!

    Aside from the Hull is heaven and the little expose Rory did about Spinvox, which was terribly important to most people anyway, most of the the blog articles are very low on content, this one is a prime example, it's about an unsubstantiated rumour that Apple might be possibly maybe sometime in the future a month or so from now, maybe this year could be announcing a new product!

  • Comment number 41.

    Sorry can I just make an amendment to my post above the first line or so of the last paragraph is incorrect it should read -

    "the little expose Rory did about Spinvox, which wasn't terribly important to most people anyway"

  • Comment number 42.

    @The_Hess I didn't mean to imply Apple created Firefox, just that it is a quality piece of software that I can enjoy on the Mac platform. Yes you are right that Apple use much the same hardware components as everyone else but I was referring to the thought that has gone into the topology under the hood. Again this is something that can't be quantified with a check list - but that's just my opinion, check out the many discussions about disassembled macs on the net to see if you agree.

    Getting back on topic, I think Apple will do as much as they can to differentiate themselves from the netbook/tablet market and so they won't use the name iTablet or similar. Oh and it will cost a lot more too! Also it will be based on mac os x and therefore won't be released until the up and coming snow leopard release has had time to bed in - major bugs ironed out etc. So probably next year then.

    Surfing the internet on my iTouch has been a revelation for me - I can quickly check something on wikipedia then put the thing down rather than having to open up a laptop or sit down at a computer desk away from the family. So I'm really looking forward to a larger device with a 10 inch screen, although I'll probably wait until version 2!

  • Comment number 43.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 44.

    Yes there are a great many articles about taking a mac to bits but a few of them are a bit feeble in all honesty. The first one I read was acting as though taking the processor out of the motherboard and the mothereboard out of the computer was rebelious and dangerous. When you look at the number of people who build their computers from these very components you realise just how non techy some of these discussions are. If it got to the point where they were overclocking or even improving their macs to run intel extreme processors then i would be interested, but all the articles seem to do is comment on the fact that the writer is so brilliant at being able to unscrew the back/side/whatever off his latest overpriced toy.

    Back on topic, lets just say the rumour of a potentially overpriced, overmarketed object entering a niche market doesn't excite me.

  • Comment number 45.

    I agree with The_Hess. And my comments earlier show that. Who on earth needs a tablet are we going insane?
    iTouch or whatever it's call can get you quick info on the web so can most mobiles so why the need for a tablet?
    Other than to leave me rolling out more junk to directors so they can show off to directors from others companies in meetings! Give it a few weeks and they wont use it either.
    Fashion has a lot to answer for with what it is doing to the PC/laptop world. We are getting ridiculous devices coming out purely to make directors go "wow!" and we are losing more and more functionality.
    I didn't even rant about corporations not giving a monkeys about customers this week. Something must be wrong with me. Oh no I can't help it...
    Oooh Apple love all the customers and wnat to hug us all. All Apple devices are knitted by old woman and tested by loving grandpas who look like Santa Cluas... Oh dear see they made me do it.
    You could put any faceless organisations into that section of my rant. All they care about is parting you from your cash. And by the looks of some of the comments today a load of people will be buying an iTablet or iWhatever to surf the web on the move which is what our bloomin mobiles do just now...
    Keep using your iPhone/Touch, Nokia, Android, Sony and save yourself some money. Let's face it a 10" screen seems great but get that out on the train or carry it around with you all day and I beg to differ. In no time it will be sitting in the same place my Eepc (Yeah I am not immune to corporate nonsense and have never claimed to be) does on a shelf gathering dust.
    Sorry to all the regular people who post. I know I promised not to go down the corporate line again but I couldn't help it.

  • Comment number 46.


    Tech's hate Macs, have done for the countless years I have been in this business. Been on support for both platforms and I found that Mac system users on the most part were very clued up in both HW and SW and where keen to learn when stumped. Windows system users on the most part were the exact opposite. "It's not working call support". A lot of the time turning on the display helped. I also noticed a difference in the attitude of the support engineers. Win tech's loved to swan from floor to floor with an aura of arrogance and self importance as if the world would end if they could not get Excel to run. Forever bemoaning the office staff as "sheep" (that's one of many I remember). Mac tech's mainly just got on with it. I think my favourite was a dept with 30+ creative Macs and 1 support guy and 20 editorial PC's and 2 VERY busy Win tech's. Just observations.

    So tech's will always hate Macs, call them shiny, fashionable underpowered etc because they have a vested interest to do so - if enterprise took on the Mac there would be a lot of redundant tech's.

    Personally it makes sense to me to have a foot in each court - have done for years and to see the benefits of both and to understand the principle strengths and weaknesses of both. Yes I can build a PC with all the singing and dancing bells and whistles but if I'm using it for standard practices what's the point? Just the same as buying a top end Mac Pro for emailing and internet when a Mac Mini will do. I could be quite sad and put a very loud fat exhaust on my car - does it go any faster? Marginally. Do I look like a cock? Definitely.

    On topic - tablets have not really been that popular and Apple will not simply produce an OSX version of a tablet. Possibly a hybrid of both a netbook and a tablet that offers OSX with iPhone functionality all using touch. WIFI and enet as standard along with usual peripheral ports - essentially a MacBook Air without the hinge and a built in iPhone. Maybe even a home docking station.

    Remember tech's I'm in the business but prefer not to sneer at new ideas and certainly not afraid of them nor indeed, Apple.....

  • Comment number 47.

    @Soap-Box-Kid

    And you reckon Apple has maintained its position in the market since the consumers who purchase their products really understand the supposed engineering quality of Mac hardware, or the solidness of the POSIX-compliant UNIX underbelly of Mac OS X?

    They buy it, largely, because it is trendy. Cool. Neat. Hip. Funky. It looks nice.

    And you may declare with all your might that Mac OS X is a superior OS to Windows, and that the build quality and hardware used is top-notch (Intel, Nvidia and Foxconn, largely - yeah, that's innovation right there), but Apple keeps itself tidy with money since it is in fashion. It always is in fashion. Not because it is superior in any way - other than aesthetically so.

    And in keeping itself in that position, we'll hear more about it from this journalist. Much more. Despite the fact that 90% of the market use Windows and associated manufacturers to utilise the software. Despite the fact that the iPhone and iTouch are hideously expensive, and are only available to a select few in society who deem it prudent, or indeed possible given their salary, to invest in one.

  • Comment number 48.

    Trying to avoid all the anti-apple ranting that's appeared, let's try to a second to imagine what an iTablet (if it does indeed come) will be.
    Forget everything you imagine. It will be MULTI screen (think Nintendo DS). The main top screen will be a normal HD screen while the bottom, the keyboard will be multitouch. This will great since this bottom screen will be able to change depending on what application you are running meaning it's never displaying pointless keys. It could also display pop-up information relating to your program or perhaps a reduced view of the desktop so that you never need shrink/hide again.
    Granted, those are random ideas but I'm just trying to point out that Apple has a habit of doing what we least expect.
    Oh, a okay, maybe Apple doesn't INVENT everything, but they make it GOOD. Who else would have dared make the iPhone what it is? It would have been clunky and ugly had Nokia tried it (only now are they copying... at a higher price!)
    Just think about it...

  • Comment number 49.

    @synthil,

    I've gotta wonder why you're even on this blog since you've obviously no interest staying on topic and this is confirmed by looking at your posts for the last week. Also you may be right in your assertions but we'll never know because you don't ever back them up with facts. I mean not even once - no links, no stats, not even an anecdote. Oh and you also you counter other straw-man assertions that nobody even made, it's like watching you fight yourself!

    I originally thought you might be interested in another viewpoint - one from an Apple customer who is as far from cool as you can get. Believe me it's true: I'm an aging developer who's worked in the city for over ten years, drive an old super mini, buy my clothes from Tescos and... well enough about me. But the point is I buy Apple products (imac, itouch, time capsule) and I work with some very intelligent guys who also own Apple products because we know they just work. I also write code for Windows, Unx and LInux so you can be confident that I'm at least well-informed.

    But clearly you've no interest in expanding your mind, preferring instead to indulge your fetish of anthropomorphizing Apple as some sort of personal nemesis. I mean it's just a listed company trying to drive up its stock price for heavens sake. But go ahead and prove me wrong, I might learn something.

  • Comment number 50.

    @Soap-Box-Kid

    Considering your statement that Apple is just a company, you seem to be very defensive. All we are saying is that there are other companies that do not recieve the same coverage for simillar products, which are potentially superior. I wonder if there will be any discussion on Sony's anouncement to reduce the size and cost of the PS3, or blackberry (who are also smartphone manufacturers) being the fastest growing company, or the Games Con in cologne which is vital for an industry that is both in need of a serious boost and rapidly expanding at the same time.

    I like the idea of a DS style iTablet but that could end up being a bit clunky for an apple product. As for running the latest Mac OSX, I don't think that will be quick enough to perform the functions people will expect of it. I'm not saying that Mac OSX is slow, but it is unneccessary in what could turn out to be an oversized iPhone. If it were to run OSX it would have no genuine advantage over a regular laptop other than the touch screen.

  • Comment number 51.

    My only personal nemesis here is blatant advertisement on behalf of a public broadcasting service. Microsoft computers utterly outshine Apple computers in terms of users in the UK, yet they receive virtually no coverage here. Apple receives a handsome amount of coverage by comparison, especially in conjunction with their iPhone (or indeed, any i(Product)).

    I did not feel it necessary to back my statements up with verifiable fact, since it is generally common knowledge for most people who read this blog, that Apple produces a niche product range for a niche market, and as such, their prices will be higher. I also do not find it necessary to back up my assertion that the BBC over-indulges us with Apple tech news - there's a BBC blog archive. Use it. Judge for yourself.

    But to indulge your own personal fetish for statistics, how about you take a look at the prices of the Macbook laptop range, and compare them to the likes of Dell, HP, or Fujitsu and their ranges. You will find that the prices for such ranges are considerably higher. Then ask yourself, is this due to a marked superiority in processing power, memory upgrades or graphical potential? No, it is not. The machines are all fairly standard Intel x86 architectures, with standard memory, standard GPU's, standard motherboards. Standard everything. They even enlist Foxconn to manufacture their motherboards, one of the cheapest manufacturers for the job.

    So, what is the variable for this pronounced increase in consumer price? It certainly isn't the operating system - Vista is generally more expensive than Mac OS upgrades, after all. It's the beauty. The elegance of the thing. My, they look good. And that is certainly not a criticism of Apple as a company - they have a marketing strategy, and they stick to it. Good for them. But the reason Apple gets away with a marketing strategy reflecting perverse demand is due to its position in the world of technological fashion. It is top. It is the main player.

    And sadly, I can't back that up with statistical evidence, either.

  • Comment number 52.

    Like Neilephipps before me I am also a tech for both platforms, in fact lump linux in with apple and windows too.

    Again I wont rant about Apple. But I do take offence at the Windows techs swanning around like they own the place self important blah blah blah.

    Frankly I find that insulting to the large number of Windows techs who do bang up jobs that I have worked with. I don't know where I fall.

    Actually Neil when I moved into supporting apple products I found some of the Apple techs to be quite arrogant and they took great joy in laughing at the expense of their users. Just like every other tech. All techs do it give me a break not all Apple techs are holier than thou. It depends on the person not the OS or make/model of device.

    Your sweeping generalisation is like saying country music fans are more likely to fight than Pop music fans. Or heavy metal fans like beer more than hip hop fans. How rude. It depends on the people not their job or their tastes.

    It is unfortunate but also true that selling something in dazzling silver does sell more regardless of the spec. It could be a bloomin Sony for all I care. The proliferation of netbooks throughout businesses is testament to this with their black sheen finish or silver clamshell design. My point is with Blackberry, iPhone and Android (to name but three devices) is their room in the market for a larger screened web browsing device? Let's face it without a keyboard it is only going to be brought out in meetings to demonstrate how cool or with it the director is. It's just profit any corporation is looking to find new ways to milk.

    Ultimately I couldn't care less what devices people use whether it be Apple/Dell or HP. Aldi have a great little PC out just now and they could use that for all I care. A PC is a PC, this includes laptops. I lump macs in here as they have Intel inside now too.

  • Comment number 53.

    It was good to see Jobs back again. How far can you take the technologies that Apple and its competitors without being unnecessary? My imac and Power PC do everything I need and my needs are at the upper end in terms of the film and publishing industries. I have a mobile, but prefer to use Skype and the old fashioned land line, which gives me unlimited 'phone calls for nothing after what is a very small line fee. An iphone that tells me how to get somewhere would be good. Keyboards are good too. Big enough keyboards to type at a reasonable speed on. Touch screens are not a good idea on a Mac or PC. How do you keep them clean, and where have those fingers been anyway? The good thing about an Apple is that it is good from out of the box, looks good and feels good and for the most part behaves itself.

 

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