Originally Posted by john galt
I think Apple is soon going to offer "cloud" storage for all your local content, which will reduce users' ever-growing mass storage needs.
Upload speeds will have to get much faster for this to happen (it would take over 5 days straight to upload 60GB on a 1Mbps upload) and I don't think after the recent security breaches in online services that people would be too keen to commit their entire content collections to any company.
I think Apple's cloud services will be closer to what Google offer e.g Pages, Keynote etc online, personal storage, personal web space. Mostly what they've been doing but this time done properly and more tightly integrated into the iOS devices. Essentially becoming the default filesystem so you'd save a Pages document there and access it on your Mac without the sync headache.
Originally Posted by john galt
5% may still be significant. The question to ask is when will their desktop segment represent Xserve's share when they dropped it - I'm guessing way less than 5%, probably less than 1%.
Apple lumped Xserve sales together with "desktops" so I don't know.
In any event I imagine iMacs and Mac Pros will continue to be sold for a long time.
Looking back at what has happened until now shows a lot of interesting things.
In 1999, Apple introduced the 450MHz G4 tower with 128MB RAM, 20GB HDD and 16MB Rage 128 graphics, 100Mbps ethernet, 802.11b wifi.
All for $2500.
In 2007, Apple introduced the iPhone with 400MHz CPU, 128MB RAM, 8-16GB storage, 802.11g wifi, 24MB PowerVR GPU.
All for $500 with maybe 10% of the device being the computer and the rest a giant battery.
That was just 8 years of progress. So if we assume that the graphics and CPU power of today's entry Mac Pro will make it into the iPhone in 8 years, that's going to make for some very interesting changes.
It will have the equivalent of a quad 3GHz CPU, 4GB RAM, 512GB-1TB solid state storage, a GPU faster than the 6750M in the higher-end MBPs, all using passive cooling.
It may be that computer parts become so inexpensive that Apple just end up selling a bunch of different monitors with computers inside because ultimately people will always need monitors - when you think about it, the display is the most important part of the machine as it's the part we engage with the most.
What I certainly see happening when it comes to the iMac is a race to the bottom. They can't keep high performance parts out of the low-end forever and when the low-end gets quad cores with Ivy Bridge in Jan 2012, I suspect people will gravitate more and more to the lower-end machines and the Mini is going to look more and more attractive to people the more diverse their display requirements get.
We haven't heard much about a Mini update but it can be updated alongside the iMac. Being so close to WWDC, I wonder if any updates will come before then. After all, they are introducing Lion so why bring out new products now when they have to update to a new OS in 4 weeks? They can just ship the machines with the new OS.