Originally Posted by addabox
No matter what Apple releases tomorrow morning, there will be a sizable contingent that consider it a complete and utter failure. Most bitter of these will be the folks that perceive it as being "oh so close" to exactly what they wanted, but for some number of baffling Apple decisions to "cripple" it.
People can only judge failure on their own personal level. If an individual decides a product doesn't do what they want then it has failed in its ability to make the sale to that individual. I'm going to go with i) all of the above regarding your list
a) Doesn't run "full OS X" and is therefore "just a big iPod Touch"
Assume ARM processors, which likely means no OS X apps other than the ones Apple bundles. I have a Mac and an iphone but don't use Apple's iapps so why would I buy it? Assuming the same price as a portable ipod, why buy a slate instead?
b) No OLED screen (we'll just call those first two "The Troubles" in honor of Ireland)
Too expensive but nice. As long as the screen is good quality like the newest laptops, it should be ok. iphone quality and it's poor.
c) Lack of this or that port, or any at all outside of a headphone jack and a dock connector
I want USB for syncing mobiles assuming the slate is the controlling device also for mouse/keyboard use when desired.
d) Fails to deliver on various rumored subscription services
Content will come regardless - Stanza for iphone is an example. This shouldn't be a problem but Apple would do well to take over control. Stanza purchases are a pain.
e) Can't run Final Cut Pro, Aperture, Pro Tools, or various processor intensive Big Apps
That misses the point about OS X x86 compatibility, plus they aren't all heavily processor intensive all the time. Final Cut is very much non-processor intensive when editing in intra-frame codecs. Think of a film director on location previewing some footage. It can be a hardware accelerated decoding. Photographers would love a slate to drop photos onto on location and slide through them and apply basic corrections to know if they need to reshoot.
f) Exclusive cell service via AT&T, aka "Oh God I hate them so much my head just exploded"
As long as they are optional, it's ok. Bluetooth iphone tethering is another route they go down.
g) Doesn't do "video chat" out of the box
It must... and it will because it must.
h) And, of course, the perennial: the pricing is insane and relegates the thing to niche status
It's always higher priced. At least if it's like a netbook, it's worth it because it's like getting a cheaper Macbook. It is to the Macbook what the Mini is to the iMac. Slower, cheaper and more versatile.
There was a gap in the laptop lineup between the Macbook and MBP for the MBA. There was a gap below the iMac for the Mini.
Right now, there's a big gap between the ipod touch ($399) and Macbook ($999). People have been trying to fill it with OS X netbooks ($299-399). What's really needed though is for Apple to do it right. $699 is right in the middle and is no way a good price for a cut down model but still acceptable for a netbook device. I'm hoping more $599 tops.
Originally Posted by addabox
However, none of that distresses me, particularly, because I expect the all-over experience of the thing to be pretty compelling, and for it to be really, really good at what it's designed to do. I'll be pleasantly surprised if its priced aggressively with an eye towards really shaking up the industry.
So is the iphone and it's an amazing device but I don't use it as much as I feel I should due to the price simply because there's nothing to use it for with the apps on offer. Occasionally something comes along that I use it for an hour or so a day but it loses appeal quickly. The one use that I've found that I want to use it for is reading ebooks with Stanza. I've even purchased books from the online store (over 3G). Switch to night-time mode and it's easy on the eyes and lasts a while.
That's one less use I don't need a big ipod for. What I do need is a device I can sit on the sofa with a sort out my photos and music and it can't be a slave device to my main computer. It doesn't need to be a Mac to do that but it's easier on Apple if it is.