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Apple pitches tablet as e-reader to Australian media - report - Page 2

post #41 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaytr View Post

I agree. While I am an advocate of Apple design, I think that consumers have no widespread experience or acceptance of this class of device. I don't think an Apple tablet would be popular or very profitable for several years--I suspect that it would be akin to the Apple TV or the Newton, which was ahead of its time.

Dissenting view:

There's now quite a bit of consumer experience with and exposure to e-readers such as the Kindle, the Sony products, the recently announced Nook and several others. The Kindle also provides some access to newspapers and other publications than books. Yes, these devices have relatively small, although growing, market penetration at this point. But the major problem with all the e-readers isn't that they're unknown, it's that they're simply not very good. Monochrome displays, unattractive designs, clunky hardware, dubious user interfaces, incompatible content/hardware ecosystems, all of those things make today's e-readers intriguing in concept but limit their target market in real life. And at $250 and up, the buyer needs to be pretty motivated to buy one.

The proper comparison isn't to the Newton or other early PDA devices, where the concept was indeed well ahead of the hardware capabilities of the time. No - instead think about personal MP3 players. Apple didn't by any means invent the MP3 player with its iPod. What they did was bring out the first MP3 player that was irresistible.

This came from a confluence of several factors: the newly available 1.8" hard drives for ample capacity (yes, 5GB seems tiny today, but it wasn't in 2001), Apple's legendary design skills that resulted in a highly attractive product, the clean and innovative user interface, and last and by no means least, the convenient iTunes Music Store and its DRM protected content that addressed both user needs and music company fears. Could somebody else have done all that? Maybe, just possibly — but they didn't.

I argue that the projected Apple tablet device is at a comparable point in history. Electronic access to news, books and magazines is on the rise, while the traditional paper versions find themselves in crisis. Specialized electronic devices (i.e. other than computers) to access published material have existed for some time, but they're simply not compelling. Narrow focus electronic book readers are too limited in scope to to justify their cost to all but the most motivated audience.

All this says to me that the door is open for someone like Apple to replicate what they did with the iPod in 2001 (and more recently with the iPhone). In today's terms that will mean much the same as back then: superior hardware, software, interface and appearance, backed by a robust ecosystem to deliver content, and all integrated in clever ways. Apple has, probably better than any other company, the ability to deliver on those things. By comparison Amazon has done a decent job with the back-end, but is weak at everything else.

The projected Apple tablet seems likely to cost at least three times as much as today's e-readers, i.e. perhaps $800 vs. $250. Obviously to justify that it both has to do more and do it better. For those to whom this seems like a stretch, let me remind you that the original 5GB iPod, introduced on 23rd October 2001, was priced at $399. That's about $480 in 2009 dollars. People said Apple was nuts.

It's going to be interesting...
post #42 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

The device was described as a larger iPhone, "small enough to carry in a handbag but too big to fit in a pocket." The tablet will reportedly allow users to surf the Web, watch movies, and read books and newspapers.

Apple is going to create a lot of "Metro Sexuals" with "Man Bags:!

Let's get shopping guys!

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post #43 of 93
"This market is smaller in some sense than the general public"

I guess I disagree with this. I think the time has come for print media to go digital in a big time way. It's expensive to print and a waste of resources, as well as inconvenient to store or throw away used printed material.

One of the things I really like about Apple is that they don't just come up with new hardware and software. They go to great lengths to develop new markets. Itunes wasn't just new software. Anyone could have come up with that. Apple worked with the music providers to develop a new market. The same could be said about the iPhone. They worked with the providers. Some turned them down - At&t worked with them and have benefited from that.

I think that Apple has spent a lot of time developing sources of print media and other types of providers.

Everyone who reads a newspaper in the morning, or students reading text books, or readers of magazines, books, comic books, menus, etc.. are potential users of this type of product. I don't think this is just going to be just another type of E reader that does only 1 thing. I think this will be huge.
post #44 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by utsava View Post

If this thing is really all about being an e-reader, I'm prepared for a big letdown. I just don't see a big iPhone that you can read books on (but can't put in your pocket) being a huge seller (especially if its expensive). E-readers are a niche market. One that everyone seems to be scrambling to cater to lately, even though only a small minority of people are asking for it.

If this thing really does run a new version of the iPhone OS, instead of full OS X, I suppose they will make a new category of apps in the app store for it and allow it to run the iPhone apps in some sort of capacity. For this thing to sell like gangbusters, I think it needs to have more than an e-reader as it's killer app. In other-words, I think it needs to be more than a big iPhone with an e-reader to be compelling to the mainstream market. Maybe way more advanced apps (iLife suite or something)? I also don't see how to convince the mainstream market to pay for yet ANOTHER 3G data plan for a device that would require a bag to bring along with you.

At any rate, it will be interesting to see what they have in store.

I think people take too much out of these articles. When pitching the tablet to newspapers and magazines, it will be pitched as an e-reader. When pitched to the movie industry, it is a movie player. When pitched to the music industry it is an mp3 player capable of doing new things like iTunes LP. When pitched to the gaming industry, it is a great gaming device. The truth of the matter is that it will be a multi-function device, and there probably won't be one killer app. The killer app will be the app that allows you to do what you want with it, and that will change from person to person (for some, there may be no killer app).
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post #45 of 93
Yes, it will be like an iPhone, just bigger...

Yes, it will basically do everything the iPhone does (okay, MAYBE not the actual voice comm via cell thing...), only on a larger screen...

But the larger screen, although making the product harder to carry in ones pocket, is EXACTLY what will drive this device in the market!

For every iPhone user, I could imagine an equal number (if not three or more times the number...) that would LOVE the portable communications provided by the iPhone but cannot use one due to the tiny screen!

The tablet WILL begin as a larger iPhone, it will evolve (as all Apple products do), and it will be the standard for 21st century mobile communications devices; covering newspapers, books, magazines, comics, journals, music (audio & video) television, podcasts, movies, iChat, email, web browsing, etc. ...

Get with the program folks; sometimes, bigger IS better...!
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post #46 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by NeilM View Post

Dissenting view:

There's now quite a bit of consumer experience with and exposure to e-readers such as the Kindle, the Sony products, the recently announced Nook and several others. The Kindle also provides some access to newspapers and other publications than books. Yes, these devices have relatively small, although growing, market penetration at this point. But the major problem with all the e-readers isn't that they're unknown, it's that they're simply not very good. Monochrome displays, unattractive designs, clunky hardware, dubious user interfaces, incompatible content/hardware ecosystems, all of those things make today's e-readers intriguing in concept but limit their target market in real life. And at $250 and up, the buyer needs to be pretty motivated to buy one.

The proper comparison isn't to the Newton or other early PDA devices, where the concept was indeed well ahead of the hardware capabilities of the time. No - instead think about personal MP3 players. Apple didn't by any means invent the MP3 player with its iPod. What they did was bring out the first MP3 player that was irresistible.

This came from a confluence of several factors: the newly available 1.8" hard drives for ample capacity (yes, 5GB seems tiny today, but it wasn't in 2001), Apple's legendary design skills that resulted in a highly attractive product, the clean and innovative user interface, and last and by no means least, the convenient iTunes Music Store and its DRM protected content that addressed both user needs and music company fears. Could somebody else have done all that? Maybe, just possibly — but they didn't.

I argue that the projected Apple tablet device is at a comparable point in history. Electronic access to news, books and magazines is on the rise, while the traditional paper versions find themselves in crisis. Specialized electronic devices (i.e. other than computers) to access published material have existed for some time, but they're simply not compelling. Narrow focus electronic book readers are too limited in scope to to justify their cost to all but the most motivated audience.

All this says to me that the door is open for someone like Apple to replicate what they did with the iPod in 2001 (and more recently with the iPhone). In today's terms that will mean much the same as back then: superior hardware, software, interface and appearance, backed by a robust ecosystem to deliver content, and all integrated in clever ways. Apple has, probably better than any other company, the ability to deliver on those things. By comparison Amazon has done a decent job with the back-end, but is weak at everything else.

The projected Apple tablet seems likely to cost at least three times as much as today's e-readers, i.e. perhaps $800 vs. $250. Obviously to justify that it both has to do more and do it better. For those to whom this seems like a stretch, let me remind you that the original 5GB iPod, introduced on 23rd October 2001, was priced at $399. That's about $480 in 2009 dollars. People said Apple was nuts.

It's going to be interesting...

A little bit to add...

Newspapers and magazines have been shown the device to "woo" them over but remember the New York Times guy, called it a "Slate" device....

Remember when school students actually carried their own piece of "slate" chalkboard to do their work on...

So let's not rule out college students....

They are at the young and what's hip age regarding electronic gadgets and get them now, you'll have them for life.

And the Universities... First, didn't some schools make iPods and iTunes a part of enrollment.

http://www.wired.com/culture/lifesty.../2004/08/64768


Next, with the advent of the iPod touch and iPhone and app store things got a little more interesting going to a new college or university...

For playing back lectures, downloading multimedia, etc...

http://blog.taragana.com/e/2009/05/0...iversity-3529/

or

http://www.librarystuff.net/2009/08/...ne-ipod-touch/

“College students could soon be able to ditch their backpacks and put their textbooks into their shirt pockets thanks to a new program that will let them read their books using iPhones or iPod Touch devices.”


Just saying, a sleek little device that has a bigger screen then the iPhone and can be in a way right up there with the PC "netbook" market, could be a boom for Apple in the educational market...

Of course I could be wrong.

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post #47 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacRonin View Post

Yes, it will be like an iPhone, just bigger...

I say, not a chance. If Apple wanted to do something this easy and predictable, they could have done it last year.
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post #48 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rot'nApple View Post

A little bit to add...

Newspapers and magazines have been shown the device to "woo" them over but remember the New York Times guy, called it a "Slate" device....

Remember when school students actually carried their own piece of "slate" chalkboard to do their work on...

So let's not rule out college students....

They are at the young and what's hip age regarding electronic gadgets and get them now, you'll have them for life.

And the Universities... First, didn't some schools make iPods and iTunes a part of enrollment.

http://www.wired.com/culture/lifesty.../2004/08/64768


Next, with the advent of the iPod touch and iPhone and app store things got a little more interesting going to a new college or university...

For playing back lectures, downloading multimedia, etc...

http://blog.taragana.com/e/2009/05/0...iversity-3529/

or

College students could soon be able to ditch their backpacks and put their textbooks into their shirt pockets thanks to a new program that will let them read their books using iPhones or iPod Touch devices.



Just saying, a sleek little device that has a bigger screen then the iPhone and can be in a way right up there with the PC "netbook" market, could be a boom for Apple in the educational market...

Of course I could be wrong.

The education market is one of the most obvious markets for a tablet. I don't think you are wrong.
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post #49 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacRonin View Post

Get with the program folks; sometimes, bigger IS better...!

No, sometimes bigger is not better. How can you type in a virtual keyboard in a 10" device?
post #50 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by macdarren View Post

I have to come down on the side of the "fully functional" group.....

An iphone / ipod touch ebook reader with a bigger screen is just not worth it. I can do most of what I need a phone to do on my phone and I can carry that in my pocket. Yes a bigger screen would be nice but that would limit portability. I want a device that is more for vertical markets. Something that I and others can use as a tool. I am thinking a small clipboard type device, sure it can do all those other things but it can also run 'real' applications. Something a doctor could use for charting, a foreman could use for tracking progress, an artist could use for sketching etc. Sure if they want to do two devices so there will be one that is cheap and one that is more functional I could live with that, but that is seldom Apples way. A device that does what a low power laptop with cell modem does but without the keyboard and track pad so it can be used while standing and moving around. That is the biggest problem of the current full function devices, that and the related lack of a touch screen. the device needs to be instant on, let me make a note or check some boxes and then be back in standby as I move on with life.

I admit this sort of thing might be hard to do without a stylus type input model, and Apple has poo-pooed that before too but I don't see it as a problem. Refine your touch tech so for many things a finger will do the job, include a clever way to hide and carry the stylus for when it is needed and get do the best you can with either hand writing recognition or just store it graphically and deal with it later as needed on a more powerful machine.

This market is smaller in some sense than the general public, but it is probably more profitable than a giant, bulky iphone book reader, movie watcher, but the same form factor and basic tech would probably suffice for both.

What makes a "real" application? I'm honestly not sure what you are getting at (although I suspect you want OSX). Why can't it do the fun stuff and more serious stuff at the same time? The applications in the app store are primarily limited by hardware and screen size, not the OS. A tablet would bring an improvement to both the internal hardware specs and to screen size. Some limitations in the OS could also be lifted for a tablet (multitasking for example).
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post #51 of 93
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Originally Posted by Gwydion View Post

No, sometimes bigger is not better. How can you type in a virtual keyboard in a 10" device?

Split keyboard?
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post #52 of 93
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Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

I could be wrong, but I don't think an Apple tablet will be marketed as just an e-reader/media player. There's some market for that, sure, but I think most people want to be able to do more with their computing devices than watch movies and read books, and the iPhone and App Store have set a bar for Apple that a larger device needs to surpass in functionality, especially since it loses the advantage of portability.

I think it's also obvious that iPhone apps, in their current form, won't work well on a relatively large tablet device. Nor, probably would Mac OS X apps (although, I think there are things, transparent to the developer, that could be done to make them work better), and, as someone pointed out previously, it's not going to be a big enough screen that it would be all that useful to have multiple apps open at the same time, except to facilitate better task switching.

All that being said, I think it adds up to the tablet running a separate OS with a separate SDK (there could be significant overlap in SDKs) and that what we know about what it may do is very fragmentary, at best. It will probably support e-reading, various media, news (as now rumored), etc. It may even support telephony via a BT headset and Voice Control. It will certainly provide a better Web experience than the iPhone. Large battery with good battery life (since most of the other components won't be much bigger than in the iPhone, there will be plenty of room for battery).

But, I still don't think that adds up to a very compelling experience, and it has to offer something distinct from MB(P) + iPhone, otherwise, why would you carry this around with compromised functionality and protability when so many people already have notebooks and smartphones? What I think it does add up to is that, if Apple brings this to market, and it looks more and more like they will, there will be something about it that is still utterly unknown that makes it something that people have to have.

I agree with you mostly. But, Apple has a pretty good track record of creating devices that succeeded where other attempts failed (iMac, iPod, iPhone, etc.). The Newton was at least a decade ahead of its time -- handwriting recognition was not nearly where it needed to be; processor was underpowered; not enough RAM/storage... If the rumors are true, and a new tablet is coming sometime early next year, it's likely they've been working on it for at least 5 years (the iPhone was in development for 7-8 years, as I understand). So I expect that a lot of these issues will have been addressed. And if the other rumor is true -- that Uncle Steve has been personally overseeing the tablet project -- then that's also a good sign. Steve's got the force of will to make a device find its place and find its market, with a couple exceptions **cough**Cube**cough**. Steve's clearly got this "build it and they will come" approach to product development, for better or worse.

For years, Apple has been the rudder that's steered the consumer tech ship, and if Steve can get his RDF mojo to work for the tablet the way it has for the iMac, iPod and iPhone, then the rest of the industry will be playing "catch-up" yet again. I am cautiously optimistic about the tablet.
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post #53 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by cmf2 View Post

Split keyboard?

Absolutely.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Futuristic View Post

... If the rumors are true, and a new tablet is coming sometime early next year, it's likely they've been working on it for at least 5 years (the iPhone was in development for 7-8 years, as I understand). So I expect that a lot of these issues will have been addressed.

Well, yes, that was my point, they won't release it unless they've got something very compelling to offer, and I don't think any of the rumors or speculation sound all that compelling, so it's not going to be (exactly) what people expect.
post #54 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by cmf2 View Post

Split keyboard?

Where? At the bottom of the screen?
post #55 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gwydion View Post

Where? At the bottom of the screen?

Wherever Apple wants to put it. It was simply an example. Yes simply scaling up the iPhones on screen keyboard may not work well, but that doesn't mean Apple couldn't create a new software keyboard (or two).
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post #56 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by cmf2 View Post

Wherever Apple wants to put it. It was simply an example. Yes simply scaling up the iPhones on screen keyboard may not work well, but that doesn't mean Apple couldn't create a new software keyboard (or two).

Well, I think you aren't catching my point.

It's not about one or two splitted keyboards, I'm talking about ergonomy, if you're using a device with a 3"-4" screen and 120-180 gr weight (any smartphone) you cand hold it and write more or less conformtably .

But if you have a device with 8"-10" screen and 350-500 gr holding it by the base and type with the thumbs it's not ergonomical.

Working with a tablet, while possible, it's very unconfortable so my comment of a picture of someone typing with it in his legs while commuting
post #57 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gwydion View Post

Where? At the bottom of the screen?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gwydion View Post

Well, I think you aren't catching my point.

It's not about one or two splitted keyboards, I'm talking about ergonomy, if you're using a device with a 3"-4" screen and 120-180 gr weight (any smartphone) you cand hold it and write more or less conformtably .

But if you have a device with 8"-10" screen and 350-500 gr holding it by the base and type with the thumbs it's not ergonomical.

Working with a tablet, while possible, it's very unconfortable so my comment of a picture of someone typing with it in his legs while commuting

Yes, at the bottom of the screen. Try it with a book, it works quite well.
post #58 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

Yes, at the bottom of the screen. Try it with a book, it works quite well.

I have an iRex Iliad, an e-ink reader.

It's size and weight are:
6.1" by 8.5" by .63"
13.7 ounces

Holding it like you say it's very uncomfortable and if the device has 10" and 15-17 ounces it will be worse.
post #59 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by NeilM View Post

Dissenting view:


It's going to be interesting...

I didn't want to copy your whole post, but I think your analysis is right on.
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post #60 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

What I want to know is, who exactly is describing the Apple tablet as a "larger iPhone" -- the rumor mongers, or someone who has actually seen/touched/used one? Does anyone seriously believe that Apple would have taken this long to develop and release this product if it was simply a scaled-up version of the iPhone? They could have done that last year. Get real! Apple is obviously sweating bullets over this product and Steve has probably crushed dozens of prototypes under his heal. If it isn't a lot of things that nobody ever expected, it will be a big disappointment.

I SERIOUSLY hope that all that you said is exactly what's going on.
post #61 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

Absolutely.



Well, yes, that was my point, they won't release it unless they've got something very compelling to offer, and I don't think any of the rumors or speculation sound all that compelling, so it's not going to be (exactly) what people expect.

We're on the same page, then.
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post #62 of 93
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Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

I want it to be waterproof, indestructible and light as a feather.

I want it to have a magical rainbow finish and produce ponies with laser beams coming out of their eyes.
post #63 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by star-fish View Post

I want it to have a magical rainbow finish and produce ponies with laser beams coming out of their eyes.

Don't you mean frickin' laser beams?
post #64 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Olternaut View Post

I SERIOUSLY hope that all that you said is exactly what's going on.

I'm surprised by the number of people who don't think so, who seem to think that Apple has spent all of this time developing an oversized iPhone.
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post #65 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gwydion View Post

Well, I think you aren't catching my point.

It's not about one or two splitted keyboards, I'm talking about ergonomy, if you're using a device with a 3"-4" screen and 120-180 gr weight (any smartphone) you cand hold it and write more or less conformtably .

But if you have a device with 8"-10" screen and 350-500 gr holding it by the base and type with the thumbs it's not ergonomical.

Working with a tablet, while possible, it's very unconfortable so my comment of a picture of someone typing with it in his legs while commuting

And I don't think you've caught my point. You haven't considered every possibility. For example, you haven't even considered holding it in landscape mode, or with a keyboard in any position other than the bottom. I've contended in the past that holding a tablet in and typing in portrait mode would be next to impossible due to the moment the tablet would inflict (threaten to flip out of your hands), but I was probably thinking of a larger device.

Size and weight do come into play with ergonomics, but they are far from the only factors. I suggested a split keyboard just to get you thinking beyond the input methods seen on the iPhone. Maybe a keyboard won't be the primary input method when you are on the go. Perhaps it will be handwriting recognition or voice input (unlikely because it makes you look like a dork), or something crazy like eye tracking software where you visually "press" each key (highly unlikely, but you never know, Apple does have patents similar to that concept). Perhaps it would be as simple as designing the interface so that minimal keyboard input is required for most things, and where keyboard input is required, auto-fill and predictive text will play a greater role. You have written it off without considering every angle.

Edit: Another crazy and outlandish idea would be to make the back of the tablet capacitive, allowing you to type with your fingers and complete gestures without letting go of the device with one hand. Regardless, I have little doubt that if this tablet comes out, your ergonomic concerns will have somehow been addressed.
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post #66 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

I'm surprised by the number of people who don't think so, who seem to think that Apple has spent all of this time developing an oversized iPhone.

Because despite their success with the iphone, Apple seems to be underwhelming lately. They basically phoned in that September iPod event.
And none of the rumors about component sources have mentioned anything special about the display they are going to use.
And trust me, besides all the talk about it being all about the software (which for the most part it is) the display technology is going to be critical for this device.

Perhaps as we get closer to the actual introduction the rumors about this device will get hotter just as the rumors for the original iphone got white hot right before the debut.

I'm really hoping Apple is able to impress us again.
post #67 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by NeilM View Post

Dissenting view:

There's now quite a bit of consumer experience with and exposure to e-readers such as the Kindle, the Sony products, the recently announced Nook and several others.

BTW, in my lengthy peroration above I did not mean to imply that an Apple Tablet would simply be a better e-book reader, intended to take over that small market segment currently shared by the Kindle and its several competitors. Rather it would be a general purpose media access device, including e-reader functionality, but also music and video playback, web browser and email. It could have some functionality to run apps, limited by the form factor.

I'd imagine something more like an oversized iPod Touch (not an iPhone), and definitely not an undersized (read crippled) laptop. Put an easel support behind it so that you could watch a movie while traveling. Include an Apple Remote.

Normally there would be no need for a physical keyboard. Any iPhone user will tell you that Apple's touchscreen virtual keyboard works surprisingly well for casual use. It would work even better when scaled up to a bigger screen, and a tablet only needs the amount of keyboard input necessary to control the device itself, or to compose emails and type URLs. Want to write that sequel to Remembrance of Things Past? Then get yourself a real computer.
post #68 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by star-fish View Post

I want it to have a magical rainbow finish and produce ponies with laser beams coming out of their eyes.

As a fish, you should know that there is a laser component shortage, due to the popularity of the shark-mounted laser accessory.
post #69 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Olternaut View Post

Because despite their success with the iphone, Apple seems to be underwhelming lately. They basically phoned in that September iPod event.
And none of the rumors about component sources have mentioned anything special about the display they are going to use.
And trust me, besides all the talk about it being all about the software (which for the most part it is) the display technology is going to be critical for this device.

Perhaps as we get closer to the actual introduction the rumors about this device will get hotter just as the rumors for the original iphone got white hot right before the debut.

I'm really hoping Apple is able to impress us again.

Apple is always underwhelming because the expectations are unreasonable. The nano got a lot better, and the macbooks and iMacs will sell incredibly well.
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post #70 of 93
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Originally Posted by cmf2 View Post

Apple is always underwhelming because the expectations are unreasonable. The nano got a lot better, and the macbooks and iMacs will sell incredibly well.

Not to mention, they haven't introduced a major new product in a few years, which is about how much time we tend to see between releases of major new Apple products. In the interim, you get revisions, which aren't meant to be revolutionary -- this alone seems to shock and disappoint many. There's a lot of "what have you done for me lately?" out there, and unfortunately "lately" seems to be defined as within the last couple of weeks.

But you just wait until this product comes out. Then we'll get plenty of the other weird vibe: "this isn't what I wanted -- fail, fail, fail!"
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post #71 of 93
I'd vote for something with a screen size of about 5x7 inches 3/4 inch thick if need be thinner if possible...something like a paperback book.

And speaking of books that is another category in addition to the ones I mentioned before. An electronic book I can easily carry like a conventional paperback (or the newer oversized ones now that m eyes are aging) and that I can hi-lite an annotate as easily as I can with the old school paper book and a pen and hi-liter. If I could further pop up a key board and actually edit something (say if I was writing the book) would be nice too....none of that requires anything new techwize.

I agree what Apple probably will do is take all the available tech and try to integrate it into a premium device with an associated services ala itunes/amazon/att to make it a truly versatile device that while not radically different is better balanced more integrated and more flexible and yes probably more expensive, than all the current crop of netbooks, pdas, e-readers etc. with the option of wired, wireless, bluetooth and cellular connectivity and maybe phone too.
post #72 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

But you just wait until this product comes out. Then we'll get plenty of the other weird vibe: "this isn't what I wanted -- fail, fail, fail!"

Completely agree.
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post #73 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rot'nApple View Post

A little bit to add...

Newspapers and magazines have been shown the device to "woo" them over but remember the New York Times guy, called it a "Slate" device....

Remember when school students actually carried their own piece of "slate" chalkboard to do their work on...

So let's not rule out college students....

They are at the young and what's hip age regarding electronic gadgets and get them now, you'll have them for life.

And the Universities... First, didn't some schools make iPods and iTunes a part of enrollment.

http://www.wired.com/culture/lifesty.../2004/08/64768


Next, with the advent of the iPod touch and iPhone and app store things got a little more interesting going to a new college or university...

For playing back lectures, downloading multimedia, etc...

http://blog.taragana.com/e/2009/05/0...iversity-3529/

or

http://www.librarystuff.net/2009/08/...ne-ipod-touch/

“College students could soon be able to ditch their backpacks and put their textbooks into their shirt pockets thanks to a new program that will let them read their books using iPhones or iPod Touch devices.”


Just saying, a sleek little device that has a bigger screen then the iPhone and can be in a way right up there with the PC "netbook" market, could be a boom for Apple in the educational market...

Of course I could be wrong.

DigitalClips, Rot'nApple, and NeilM: I think you make good arguments for the potential of an Apple Tablet. But here are some counter-arguments:
1. Too expensive to justify: The iPhone costs about $600, which consumers pay through initial purchase price and mobile phone service plans (2-year contracts). The Apple Tablet would cost more, perhaps $800-1100. Maybe with a data plan from mobile phone service providers, the cost can be similarly spread out over 1 to 2 year contracts? I don't think the prices would be compelling enough for consumers. And although Apple has filed numerous patents (including advertisement inclusion), I don't think they would pursue those pricing models--negative customer reaction (selling out).
2. Assuming the first point, why would a consumer pay that much to get a dumbed-down laptop? Why not just get a MacBook/Pro, with its superior capabilities as a full laptop and full OS? And if touch-screen is so desirable, Apple could add it to the MacBook. Yes, weight would be the trade-off.
3. While e-readers do have their own small, niche markets, these do not seem to be growing exponentially, so why would Apple invest so much money in carving out a small niche? Even if you add various forms of content (textbooks, movies, music), it's still less than a full laptop, which could also provide the content. Mind you, I do think that textbooks will go digital in the near future, but won't be tied to a specific class of hardware.
4. Existing products fill the need. iPhones/smartphones excel in portability. Laptops provide full computing power and flexibility, while still affording some degree of portability.
5. Touch-screens are intended for light-duty input. I love my iPhone, but I wouldn't want to do much editing/typing on any smartphone (inefficient). A larger touchscreen is just as clumsy (types slower than hardware keyboard, gets dirty/greasy quickly, doesn't respond as expected...). Plus, touchscreens wear out fairly quickly (lose sensitivity) and need replacement--bad customer experience.

All of the above said, I look forward to Apple's innovations, even if I'm doubtful about an Apple Tablet's success in 2010.
post #74 of 93
There's a time and a place for a keyboard. If you are sitting on a bus, airplane, or in a classroom, you can probably get along without one. But, you could use a keyboard at home, in your office, or in your dorm room.

The solution might be a dock. A dock could provide multiple functions. It could allow the use of a keyboard, either with a cord or wireless. It would recharge the tablet. It could put it into a vertical position for use as a desktop type of computer or to watch movies or television. Maybe the position could be adjustable. It could be a radio and alarm clock, etc... like iHome products. It could also provide dockage for your iphone and be a place where the tablet and iphone could sync information.

I don't think lack of a keyboard will be a problem.
post #75 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by cmf2 View Post

Completely agree.

I feel like we're hearing it already -- Apple can't possibly deliver the product of my dreams at the price I'm willing to pay, so they've already failed.
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post #76 of 93
Well...now the itablet is imminant
post #77 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaytr View Post

DigitalClips, Rot'nApple, and NeilM: I think you make good arguments for the potential of an Apple Tablet. But here are some counter-arguments:
1. Too expensive to justify: The iPhone costs about $600, which consumers pay through initial purchase price and mobile phone service plans (2-year contracts). The Apple Tablet would cost more, perhaps $800-1100. Maybe with a data plan from mobile phone service providers, the cost can be similarly spread out over 1 to 2 year contracts? I don't think the prices would be compelling enough for consumers. And although Apple has filed numerous patents (including advertisement inclusion), I don't think they would pursue those pricing models--negative customer reaction (selling out).
2. Assuming the first point, why would a consumer pay that much to get a dumbed-down laptop? Why not just get a MacBook/Pro, with its superior capabilities as a full laptop and full OS? And if touch-screen is so desirable, Apple could add it to the MacBook. Yes, weight would be the trade-off.
3. While e-readers do have their own small, niche markets, these do not seem to be growing exponentially, so why would Apple invest so much money in carving out a small niche? Even if you add various forms of content (textbooks, movies, music), it's still less than a full laptop, which could also provide the content. Mind you, I do think that textbooks will go digital in the near future, but won't be tied to a specific class of hardware.
4. Existing products fill the need. iPhones/smartphones excel in portability. Laptops provide full computing power and flexibility, while still affording some degree of portability.
5. Touch-screens are intended for light-duty input. I love my iPhone, but I wouldn't want to do much editing/typing on any smartphone (inefficient). A larger touchscreen simply becomes more clumsy. Plus, touchscreens wear out fairly quickly (lose sensitivity) and need replacement--bad customer experience.

All of the above said, I look forward to Apple's innovations, even if I'm doubtful about an Apple Tablet's success in 2010.

I think your vision of the tablet as a laptop replacement is where you go astray. I don't think the tablet will be designed to replace a laptop at all, but rather supplement one, and perhaps perform some tasks much more effectively.

For a student, I can see a tablet displaying notes they took in class as well as text while they work on a report on their laptop.

For someone in business. The laptop would become the mobile workstation that stayed in the hotel when you went to meetings and presentations with the tablet.

At home, the tablet would supplement your Apple TV experience (scroll movie listings without the menu popping up on the TV, read reviews, purchase the rental you are currently watching, etc.), as well as become the laptop internet device in front of the TV.

Next to any computer, it could become a secondary monitor/supplementary input device. etc. etc.

Of course your price argument is very valid, how much will people pay for such a device? I think only time will tell, but I don't think you are giving the tablet its due by referring to it as an underpowered laptop or an e-reader replacement. It won't replace all the functions of a laptop and it wont be intended to, but it will have some other tricks. It wont compete in the dedicated e-reader market, but the death of dedicated e-readers may come as a result of the tablets success.
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post #78 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by cmf2 View Post

I think your vision of the tablet as a laptop replacement is where you go astray. I don't think the tablet will be designed to replace a laptop at all, but rather supplement one, and perhaps perform some tasks much more effectively.

For a student, I can see a tablet displaying notes they took in class as well as text while they work on a report on their laptop.

For someone in business. The laptop would become the mobile workstation that stayed in the hotel when you went to meetings and presentations with the tablet.

At home, the tablet would supplement your Apple TV experience (scroll movie listings without the menu popping up on the TV, read reviews, purchase the rental you are currently watching, etc.), as well as become the laptop internet device in front of the TV.

Next to any computer, it could become a secondary monitor/supplementary input device. etc. etc.

Of course your price argument is very valid, how much will people pay for such a device? I think only time will tell, but I don't think you are giving the tablet its due by referring to it as an underpowered laptop or an e-reader replacement. It won't replace all the functions of a laptop and it wont be intended to, but it will have some other tricks. It wont compete in the dedicated e-reader market, but the death of dedicated e-readers may come as a result of the tablets success.

Agreed. This device will not be a laptop replacement if only because it's impossible for it to do some things even remotely as well as a laptop already does. The problem with most netbooks isn't that they fail to be useful but rather, by allowing for full laptop functionality, they invite use of the device for activities to which it's not suited, hence making for a disappointing experience.

I think whatever this new device from Apple will be designed to do, it will do it well. Anything the unit is lousy at, I suspect Apple will attempt to discourage the device's use for that activity.

I can see this tablet being very good for quite a few things which it will be designed to accommodate and not suited to others which Apple will not enable, no doubt being criticized initially for not including. By trying to do it all, the tablet would surely fail. It's not how Apple does things.
post #79 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by cmf2 View Post
I think your vision of the tablet as a laptop replacement is where you go astray. I don't think the tablet will be designed to replace a laptop at all, but rather supplement one, and perhaps perform some tasks much more effectively.

For a student, I can see a tablet displaying notes they took in class as well as text while they work on a report on their laptop.

For someone in business. The laptop would become the mobile workstation that stayed in the hotel when you went to meetings and presentations with the tablet.

At home, the tablet would supplement your Apple TV experience (scroll movie listings without the menu popping up on the TV, read reviews, purchase the rental you are currently watching, etc.), as well as become the laptop internet device in front of the TV.

Next to any computer, it could become a secondary monitor/supplementary input device. etc. etc.

Of course your price argument is very valid, how much will people pay for such a device? I think only time will tell, but I don't think you are giving the tablet its due by referring to it as an underpowered laptop or an e-reader replacement. It won't replace all the functions of a laptop and it wont be intended to, but it will have some other tricks. It wont compete in the dedicated e-reader market, but the death of dedicated e-readers may come as a result of the tablets success.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Carmissimo View Post

Agreed. This device will not be a laptop replacement if only because it's impossible for it to do some things even remotely as well as a laptop already does. The problem with most netbooks isn't that they fail to be useful but rather, by allowing for full laptop functionality, they invite use of the device for activities to which it's not suited, hence making for a disappointing experience.

I think whatever this new device from Apple will be designed to do, it will do it well. Anything the unit is lousy at, I suspect Apple will attempt to discourage the device's use for that activity.

I can see this tablet being very good for quite a few things which it will be designed to accommodate and not suited to others which Apple will not enable, no doubt being criticized initially for not including. By trying to do it all, the tablet would surely fail. It's not how Apple does things.

Those are interesting applications for a tablet. But despite tablet PCs being available for years, their market share has not increased dramatically. And I don't just chalk that up to Microsoft's lame GUI design.

Here's the problem: while the Apple Tablet may not be a simple replacement for an e-reader or a dumbed-down laptop/netbook, what applications would it have that you would part with $800-1100 (i.e., what is compelling enough for you to buy this, in addition to or as a replacement for your iPhone/MacBook/Wacom tablet/remote control)?

Students can buy a paper notepad for about one dollar. If they want to scan, they can--unlikely.

Businessmen/women taking notes on a tablet? Same as students--will use paper or possibly a laptop.

$800 remote control for your TV/media center? Only if you have money to burn.

10" to 13" secondary monitor for $800? I'd rather buy a real secondary monitor (21") for $200.

Even some combination of the above functions doesn't seem compelling to me to pay so much. Whether intended to replace the laptop/e-reader or not, the comparison will inevitably arise. I "get" that this is not intended to be a drop-in replacement for one or more devices, but show me the niche(s) that this fills for $800-1100. There is an existing market for the iPhone (smartphone) and the MacBook (laptop), but how will consumers be convinced that there is an intermediary-priced product that they "must have"? If you feel the Apple Tablet will cost less, please explain and suggest the design features (touchscreen, hardware keyboard, weight, etc.). The SW/HW design and functionality should improve upon what already exists. Example: iPhone vs. previous smartphones
post #80 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaytr View Post

Those are interesting applications for a tablet. But despite tablet PCs being available for years, their market share has not increased dramatically. And I don't just chalk that up to Microsoft's lame GUI design.

Here's the problem: while the Apple Tablet may not be a simple replacement for an e-reader or a dumbed-down laptop/netbook, what applications would it have that you would part with $800-1100 (i.e., what is compelling enough for you to buy this, in addition to or as a replacement for your iPhone/MacBook/Wacom tablet/remote control)?

Students can buy a paper notepad for about one dollar. If they want to scan, they can--unlikely.

Businessmen/women taking notes on a tablet? Same as students--will use paper or possibly a laptop.

$800 remote control for your TV/media center? Only if you have money to burn.

10" to 13" secondary monitor for $800? I'd rather buy a real secondary monitor (21") for $200.

Even some combination of the above functions doesn't seem compelling to me to pay so much. Whether intended to replace the laptop/e-reader or not, the comparison will inevitably arise. I "get" that this is not intended to be a drop-in replacement for one or more devices, but show me the niche(s) that this fills for $800-1100. There is an existing market for the iPhone (smartphone) and the MacBook (laptop), but how will consumers be convinced that there is an intermediary-priced product that they "must have"? If you feel the Apple Tablet will cost less, please explain and suggest the design features (touchscreen, hardware keyboard, weight, etc.). The form factor and functionality should improve upon what already exists. Example: iPhone vs. previous smartphones

For a student, what you should really be considering is the weight of everything. The weight of multiple notebooks/binders, and the weight of multiple textbooks. Then factor in some cost saving on the electronic forms of textbooks, more if Apple allows chapter by chapter purchasing or textbook rental (for the semester) and the convenience of having all your materials with you all the time and not having to stand in lines in the bookstore. A tablet would also enable you to record every lecture hassle free.

There were so many times in my university career that I left things behind because they wouldn't fit in my bag, only to need them later in the day. I often longed for digital versions of my handwritten notes (easier to organize), searchable and more likely to keep afterwards (I have boxes of notes that I don't know what to do with). A tablet would have been amazing. I can't believe you brought up scanning, that is hilarious. The concept of virtually any Apple product is convenience. Apple doesn't make new tasks possible, they tend to make existing tasks feasible. For example, Apple didn't invent back ups, but time machine brought back ups to the (mac using) masses.

I'm not going to go through the rest of the ideas again (my list was far from inclusive anyway) because that was never my point. A tablet will represent a virtually endless list of potential functions and features. If there are enough features that are of use to you, it will be worthwhile.

Why have tablets not taken off despite years of existence?
1. They cost more than a notebook, not less (because they were notebooks with touch screens added)
2. Yes Microsofts lame GUI. They ran a cursor based GUI with some touch functionality tacked on.

Essentially, the tablets were expensive devices that weren't even good at being a tablet.

Now times are changing. Cheaper processors that are "powerful enough" are out there. Touch based UI's are being developed. Products such as the crunchpad and courier concepts and archos ever growing line of android/win 7 tablets are preparing the waters for the Apple tablets big splash. I fully believe that a tablet designed for touch from the ground up and designed to highlight its strengths instead of its weaknesses can succeed in todays market.

"The form factor and functionality should improve upon what already exists."

Of course, and a tablet would (for specific functions).

PS. Why stop at two monitors? The tablet could simply become a third monitor/input device. You are for whatever reason, looking for reasons why it won't work instead of looking for reasons why it could. I guess it is easier to be the skeptic.

Edit: Sorry if I'm ranting. I just find it frustrating that an unreleased product with unreleased specifications is already labeled as a failed initiative by some. Especially since it is a device that I see huge potential in. Potential not yet limited by specifications. I fully understand that most of my ideas (many of which are not recorded in text) will not be implemented, but I find it a much more fun and challenging mental exercise to design what you could see a tablet doing for you than nitpicking what it can't do for you based on existing products.
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