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Economy, opportunity seen leading to $599 Apple netbook - Page 5

post #161 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by RBR View Post

The Atom dual core costs $43...just a little different.

I'm seeing 4 Atoms that are 1.6Ghz. They range from $29 to $70. The MBA CPU is $284, so I guess that is only a $250 difference, not $300.
http://www.intc.com/priceList.cfm
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post #162 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by devin View Post

Apple is not going to release a cheap laptop. They may create a low-cost product offering that would fall into the netbook category, but it will not be a netbook as the term is currently defined. The current definition of a netbook is very broad and encompasses low-cost, low-performance, ultra-portable, and most importantly for Apple, encompasses low-quality. Apple will not release a low-quality offering.

I believe that Apple will redefine the entire netbook category and create something that is not synonymous with cheap, or even laptop. Their product will be something completely different and revolutionary like the iPhone: netbook is just a marketing term after all - theres a lot of innovation to be had here.

Releasing a cheap notebook would ruin the rest of their product line-up.

Check out my recent response to this AppleInsider article...

Dude well said, glad you are not as clueless as a lot of people out there.
post #163 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by madmaxmedia View Post

Well, the number one thing netbook owners care about is price, which rules out the MacBooks for the general netbook shopper. But as far as FORM FACTOR is concerned, then I think the analyst was right- look at the recent trend towards 10 and even 12 inch netbooks- people are realizing that cramped keyboards and really small screens just don't cut it.

Dude you don't buy Apple computers if you are concerned about price.
post #164 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by steviet02 View Post

So the MacBook can't do what you did with the MacBook Air? You're lying to justify your purchase. You could have completed the exact same tasks, and then some with the MacBook as opposed to the Air. And you could have gotten it done faster.

And I do carry my MacBook around with me, so I know what it's like to travel with it.

Welcome to my ignore list.

 

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post #165 of 256
Hmmmm...

 

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post #166 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by palegolas View Post

The Air is super cool, but if it was priced and marketed as a product closer to its actual specs and capacity I'd say it'd sell in big numbers, and when production ramp goes up I think they could price it way lower.
If Apple wanted to develop an AIR for the consumers for $600 I say they could do it without compensating quality. Like they're doing with the new MacBooks. Wow, they look, feel and perform so hi fi pro polished and still selling at a reasonable price.
I'll quote Arnold: "Give these people AIR".

Okay, so you're saying either
1) start with the MacBook, take out the DVD drive, slow down the chip, reduce the ram, maintain the same build quality, and mass produce. So we go from what... $1100 to $900 I'm guessing?
or
2) start with the MacBook Air, increase the hard disk to 3.5" (from 2.5"), slight chip size increase (remove premium cost components), increase battery size - and knock it down from $1700

Either ends up with a similar end result. If you reduce the screen size you save a fair bit of money as long as the overall size of the laptop is the same - if you reduce the footprint at the same time then the same demands on size come in (so cost increases or performance reduces).

(Or reduce the build quality to keep costs low of course.)

Maybe I should take a step back.
What exactly would you change in a MB (or MBA) to halve the price while maintaining performance and quality. I assume you don't want a netbook so much as a much cheaper laptop.
(I get the "if you produce more it'll reduce the cost" - but nowhere near that much).
post #167 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

I'm seeing 4 Atoms that are 1.6Ghz. They range from $29 to $70. The MBA CPU is $284, so I guess that is only a $250 difference, not $300.
http://www.intc.com/priceList.cfm

Sorry if my intent was not clear. There is "just a little" (wink) difference in the cost of an Atom and the CPU in a MBA. The article I saw quoted the single core 1.6 at $27 and the dual core at $43 which will, no doubt, fall quickly as it has only now been introduced.

Your point, as I took it, was exactly correct. An Atom or other similar class CPU is perfectly adequate for a Netbook or MID as long as you don't shove Vista down its throat (as Dell did with one of them) and its cost is such that an inexpensive device is entirely reasonable.

It is the basis of any number of Netbooks and the price of those devices should fall next year. They are going to sell a bunch of them IMO.

Cheers
post #168 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheSnarkmeister View Post

Leave it to Apple to wait until after the holiday rush to unveil a new product--millions lost just so Mr. Jobs can run his dog and pony show in January.

It looks that way but it actually serves 3 purposes
1) it gets rid of existing stock with big sales numbers at Christmas.
2) it doesn't cannibalise sales of available products at Christmas if the release of the brilliant new product is months away
3) the much lower january demand allows them to more slowly ramp up production instead of having huge demand and no products, with bad publicity to go with it.

I would love to see new big releases for December, but I certainly don't think Apple loses any money by doing it the way they do.
post #169 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by RBR View Post

An Atom or other similar class CPU is perfectly adequate for a Netbook or MID as long as you don't shove Vista down its throat (as Dell did with one of them) and its cost is such that an inexpensive device is entirely reasonable.

I agree.

There are 2 different approaches to a small netbook device
a) take the current MacBook offerings and make a smaller one, cut back speed, some functionality, but pretty well stick OSX on it as now.
b) build something small and light - specifically to access email, web, IM, video/music, and with a functional keyboard.

I said earlier take the iPhone chip, OS, memory, etc and just give it a larger screen and keyboard, and a word processor. Kind of like how the Newton was made into the eMate. Then we're talking closer to iPod Touch prices.

But really... I was trying to escape the "put full OSX on a really cheap little machine" idea that is easy to fall into.

We know Snow Leopard is being designed with both Mac OSX and iPhone OSX in mind - so hopefully it will also be ideal for a Netbook/MID style machine. It'd have to use a more powerful ARM or Atom and it'd have to set a very clear, specific, lower expectation of what it does.

Apple is great at cutting back the functions and leaving the core/key functions working very well. If Apple produces a Netbook, expect it NOT to do everything OSX does. Millions of people will scream "why did they remove X, Y, & Z? they crippled it!". But its key functions will run well, look good, and be very attractive to more than 50% of people.
post #170 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adjei View Post

Dude you don't buy Apple computers if you are concerned about price.

Uhh... really?

'Cuz I've been buying 'em since the SE/30 days, and I still worry about the price, even though I've got quite a bit of money. Because that's how you get to keep on having a lot of money.


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post #171 of 256
Umm. Another thought.

If Apple designs a cheap device with reduced functions geared specifically for web, email, video, audio, simple app-store games/apps, and a basic word processor.... why wouldn't they also make a cheaper desktop version for homes? (no battery, bigger screen?)

You can already buy music & videos directly from an AppleTV or iPhone. You can sync your documents to MobileMe. I know WE want more from our computers, but is there are market for something 'less'?

edit: The more I mull on this the more I think it fits with Snow Leopard rumours - since people with the beta say it won't be ready Q1. A new cut-back device or 2 from Apple with Snow Leopard, a simplified interface, reduced functions, and very specific hardware support could be much closer. Netbook, & home webmachine to start, the AppleTV3, iPhone3, iTablet later, all Macs eventually... same OS core for all.....
.... or something like that.
.... My hopes & insights rarely appear as I envisage...
post #172 of 256
Who want's a neutered laptop, or bloated iPhone? Build something that fits that size but leverages existing technologies in a way nobody else in the market has any hope of copying for at least two to three years.

I want a tablet that's actually a tablet -- think steno pad sized. That gives you a form factor of 6.5x9.5 and 5/8" thick. 1.5lbs/680 grams or less.

Full wireless connectivity, and auto-synching with your desktop or laptop if it knows where it is on the network--worldwide. Uses your laptop/desktop on the network to get heavy duty tasks done, not quite thin client, but more X-grid/remote desktop like.

Put a 9.5 to 10" widescreen touch sensitive display on it, that's bigger than the original Macintoshes had with about a 1/4" bezel and a great size weight for on the go video. Often, but not always streamed from your own home/work machine! Gotta be able to have enough local storage to watch on a plane/train, or kids in the back seat crossing the wastes of Nebraska.

A battery good for 12 hours in a reasonable conservation mode, 100% non-moving storage. Tons of RAM and lots of flash. It's all local cache for more speed on less power draw.

Killer app? - Sound recording capability and built in sound editing/voice parsing for post meeting/class processing. Farm that work out to the laptop/desktop and save battery. Now you can sit in a meeting or lecture, take time stamped notes and drive a auto-transcript generation utility. This gets even better if you make it Keynote syncable. Just import any PPT slides to Keynote and get the full auto synch for later playback/review. Yeah, there are implementation details here but you get the idea. Never again have some asshat be able to wriggle out of a statement made in a meeting or lecture. Never again have to lug something more than a pound an a half to do notes on or handle quick jottings.

Killer app 2?. When sitting on the desk next to the laptop/desktop and docked for recharging have a mode that would work like an intelligent input device/second monitor simultaneously. I can't begin to tell you how slick that would be for prototyping ideas, or marking up homework, etc.

Throw some other cool app stuff in to boot, I'm sure some of you have some more great ideas. Bottom line is this is not a primary machine replacement, and not a repackaged form factor of anything currently in the market today. It is a new set of functionality in a form factor that could be positioned as the ultimate must have lightweight extension of the current machine into a worldwide computing asset. You are essentially taking your office/home machine's capabilities with you in the size of a steno pad. I probably won't do great for FPS dynamic graphics games, but could probably handle most other genre's just fine, and that's OK because that's FPS is not what it would be designed for.

It would probably also drive a little ecosystem of accessories like on-the-go keyboards, optical drives, GPS navigation and other I/O devices [universal semi-self programming home theater remote? interface] to add things some folks want that others don't.

Shoot for the $499-$599 price point. We are't far off from the capability right now, battery life/form factor and some of the remote software design are pretty damn close right now. Apple already has the underlying technological pieces, just not stitched together in one cohesive manner.

Ireland even has a workable mock-up of it already!
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post #173 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by GregAlexander View Post

Umm. Another thought.

If Apple designs a cheap device with reduced functions geared specifically for web, email, video, audio, simple app-store games/apps, and a basic word processor.... why wouldn't they also make a cheaper desktop version for homes? (no battery, bigger screen?)

You can already buy music & videos directly from an AppleTV or iPhone. You can sync your documents to MobileMe. I know WE want more from our computers, but is there are market for something 'less'?

edit: The more I mull on this the more I think it fits with Snow Leopard rumours - since people with the beta say it won't be ready Q1. A new cut-back device or 2 from Apple with Snow Leopard, a simplified interface, reduced functions, and very specific hardware support could be much closer. Netbook, & home webmachine to start, the AppleTV3, iPhone3, iTablet later, all Macs eventually... same OS core for all.....
.... or something like that.
.... My hopes & insights rarely appear as I envisage...

There is a market for something less. That is why there are so many people building OS X netbooks. I spent $399 for a Mini 9 from the Dell outlet, $24 for 2GB RAM, and $219 for for a 64GB SSD. I had not used all of my installs on my Leopard Family pak, so I saved a little there, and I also already had an external CD/DVD Drive. So that's $642. Would I have spent $699 - $799 to get one from Apple? You bet. I love my iPhone, but there are some things it just can't do, and other things it does not do well. I just want something inbetween my iMac at home, and iPhone that can run full OS X. Apple just does not offer it now, so like others I decided to find out how to make my own.
post #174 of 256
An Apple design netbook? I can only envision the MacBook mini. A scaled-down version of the current MacBook unibody chassis.

I would buy one…

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hiro View Post

I want a tablet that's actually a tablet -- think steno pad sized. That gives you a form factor of 6.5x9.5 and 5/8" thick. 1.5lbs/680 grams or less.

Full wireless connectivity, and auto-synching with your desktop or laptop if it knows where it is on the network--worldwide. Uses your laptop/desktop on the network to get heavy duty tasks done, not quite thin client, but more X-grid/remote desktop like.

Preaching to the choir…!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hiro View Post

Killer app 2?. When sitting on the desk next to the laptop/desktop and docked for recharging have a mode that would work like an intelligent input device/second monitor simultaneously. I can't begin to tell you how slick that would be for prototyping ideas, or marking up homework, etc.

I have envisioned this exact thing when I was working at an architectural studio; I was pushing for the studio to move their day-to-day to the ArchiOffice (FileMaker backend) database. From using the demo version, I knew the interface only enlarged to a certain size, one which would fit perfectly on a notepad sized tablet. My vision had the tablet running the frontend of the database, and 'integrating' itself with the MacPro running a license of ArchiCAD…
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post #175 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by HyteProsector View Post

Want an Apple netbook? Get a 12" PowerBook refurbished. Inexpensive, small processor, and practical. Maybe a smidge too big but none the less, it'll do the trick just the same.

That's exactly what I did, the day after the MacBook Air came out. I wanted to see the feature set of the MBA to be sure, but the predicted limited connectivity and the lack of a built-in burner/drive were deal breakers in setting I needed to use this particular portable. The 12" PB I got was pretty well maxed-out by the refurb site. With a 1.5Ghz G4, it has just enough "oomph" to handle a Keynote loaded with a bunch of 720x480 QuickTime movies and avoid the embarrassment of using the Dell 630/ WindowsXP /Powerpoint 2003/WMV/AVI crash-and-burn-in-front-of the-International-Board combo that the mothership issues to us drones. Plus it runs the 3 Classic apps that I still need to use once in a blue moon. It really is a handy little beast. I'm probably going to buy one or two more just for spares.

Personally, I think Uncle Steve may have missed the boat on this one. An intel based 12" MBP could have been essentially the Apple version of the IBM Thinkpad X-61: a rugged, little business box that is easy to deal with in airport security lines, and will hook up to a wide variety of projectors and other devices wherever you might land. (It would also have the benefit of not needing an UltraBase). Given the option to boot into OS X or Windows (or run XP/Vista?Linux etc. in Parallels or Fusion), a person could have pretty much everything in one can that could take the beating that today's business style can exact on gear.

Plus, you wouldn't have to have the Chief Technical Officer jump up and do a fart-and-tap-dance for 15 minutes while trying to reboot the Dell because the WMV file just melted everything in the front of the room (never again).

In retrospect, it was kind of funny to hear the room simultaneously mutter, "ugh, Windows", in about 20 different dialects. I guess they have all had their turn in "front of the class".

Anyway, yeah get a refurb 12" MBP.
post #176 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kolchak View Post



I'm usually carrying a bag of some kind anyway, so it's not a big deal. Go to the big city and nearly everybody's carrying a bag. I see guys in their 60s still lugging around knapsacks. Sticking another small device in there weighing a couple of pounds isn't awkward at all. A five pound slab of a laptop usually is, though.

Yeah, you know all about them. I suppose your personally "refurbished" Powerbooks include the standard one-year Apple warranty? I didn't think so.

Alright, first off my eBay approval rating is 100%. Thats besides that point. I don't even know what made you question my integrity as a seller. Anyways... Your wording in the first paragraph was good. "Lugging" around knapsacks?. No one wants to do that. Honestly. I'm trying to rid myself of the things I need to carry around with me. Isn't that part of whats great about being a guy? You don't have to lug a freaking bag with you everywhere you go?

Also...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Claude427 View Post

The 12" PB I got was pretty well maxed-out by the refurb site. With a 1.5Ghz G4, it has just enough "oomph" to handle a Keynote loaded with a bunch of 720x480 QuickTime movies and avoid the embarrassment of using the Dell 630/ WindowsXP /Powerpoint 2003/WMV/AVI crash-and-burn-in-front-of the-International-Board combo that the mothership issues to us drones. Plus it runs the 3 Classic apps that I still need to use once in a blue moon. It really is a handy little beast. I'm probably going to buy one or two more just for spares.

Anyway, yeah get a refurb 12" MBP.

Thank you Claude... I was waiting for someone to help me out there.
post #177 of 256
Every computer will not suit every consumer.

For some, the MBA doesn't have certain features that are "deal breakers". For others, like myself, the Air has certain features that are "deal makers". Apple chose to make a machine for those people. They have made lots of money off of it. They have learned a lot from it (the new MB and MBP cases are a direct result of the MBA); IOW, everybody has benefitted from the MBA.

I make CDs and DVDs professionally and do not have a need for a burner on my MBA. Some people don't agree. That's life. This time around, Apple decided to make a computer that fit a particular user's needs set, and not the average user.

As far as this cheap thing is concerned, I would be interested to see the Apple TV obtain a processor and then run apps form the App Store. Add a keyboard and you could type mail; add a mouse and you could draw picts. Lots of people would be happy with a basic device. Libraries could dedicate them to surfing or viewing of stored materials. The uses are limitless.

However, there is a group of people who always think we need more power, more ports blah blah blah. Yes, some people do, and the makers need to provide them with such (I myself have a tricked out MacPro at work). No, most people don't, and makers are going to serve them, too.

Look at the popularity of cell phones; my wife attended a conference last year where three big-whig business leaders all discussed an apparent move away from computers as the phones increase in capability. This was before the iPhone and App Store came to Japan.

Many people want small, cheap devices with inexpensive apps. The App Store sees over 2 million downloads every day; I wonder how that compares to Apple's software download section on their homepage.

 

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post #178 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by mjteix View Post



Beautiful mock-up. If Apple were to enter the Netbook martket, I envision something similar with one big exception.

Take a look at the new MacBook. The trackpad on that thing is huge. Apple is making gestures a bigger and bigger part of their interface. How are you going to do a four-finger gesture into expose?

This is what I see:

Proximity sensors across the bottom of the open laptop. They know how many hands you're holding over the device. When you have 2 hands over, a keyboard is displayed on a touch display somewhat similar to the Kindle's (only with multi-touch capabilities). When you have only one hand over the device the entire thing turns to a multi-touch track pad. ... And there you have it. The best of both worlds. Full sized keyboard. Huge trackpad. And uh ... oh yeah... I'd make the display occupy the entire footprint.

I'm guessing El Jobso was talking about something similar when he said they had interesting ideas for netbooks. And we all know he loves full sized keyboards.
post #179 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by afishertx View Post

There is a market for something less. That is why there are so many people building OS X netbooks. I spent $399 for a Mini 9 from the Dell outlet...

When I asked if there was a market for something less - I wasn't meaning OSX on Atom, so much as a cheaper Mac that actually did less but did it very well. At MOST, imagine a cut-back Mac with light versions of iPhoto, iTunes, Pages, QuickView, IM, Mail, Calendar, Safari.... and access to 3rd party (lower power) apps like Dashboard or iPhone Apps. Less configurability, no regular OSX apps.

This could be in the form of a Netbook or low-function home computer. Sync to your home Mac/PC/MobileMe.

Would that appeal to you?
post #180 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by GregAlexander View Post

When I asked if there was a market for something less - I wasn't meaning OSX on Atom, so much as a cheaper Mac that actually did less but did it very well. At MOST, imagine a cut-back Mac with light versions of iPhoto, iTunes, Pages, QuickView, IM, Mail, Calendar, Safari.... and access to 3rd party (lower power) apps like Dashboard or iPhone Apps. Less configurability, no regular OSX apps.

This could be in the form of a Netbook or low-function home computer. Sync to your home Mac/PC/MobileMe.

Would that appeal to you?

I can't speak for the person this is directed to, but NO. Cut-down, "light" version of applications are fine on a device like the iPhone, which clearly is incapable of running the full versions, but not on a netbook.

If Apple makes a netbook, it must run the same OS X as every other Mac, and be able to run the same apps. Obviously, you're not going to be editing Garageband tracks or using Photoshop on the thing, any more that you would on an old G4.
post #181 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by FuturePastNow View Post

If Apple makes a netbook, it must run the same OS X as every other Mac, and be able to run the same apps.

Interesting. I personally would have to have a better notebook... or at least that's my initial reaction. Now that I think about it I'm not so sure.

Mostly I manage emails, use iTunes, use basic pages & numbers, watch movies, remote control Macs & PCs... but I also work with photos & edit movies, create iWeb & Dreamweaver websites. I have lots of smaller apps that _probably_ don't matter.

For me, the photos/web/movies would make me willing to jump from $600 to double or triple that (along with a bigger screen). Though I'd be seriously considering an iMac + Netbook combo!

What functionality must you have that upsells you?
post #182 of 256
It seems like its mostly about price with netbooks.

So I can't see Apple getting into this market.

But I do think Apple might have to consider creating another brand to cater to the more mainstream and lower-end consumer. They should try and become more of the Ikea of computing instead of remaining just the Lexus.
post #183 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by GregAlexander View Post

I agree.

There are 2 different approaches to a small netbook device
a) take the current MacBook offerings and make a smaller one, cut back speed, some functionality, but pretty well stick OSX on it as now.
b) build something small and light - specifically to access email, web, IM, video/music, and with a functional keyboard.

I said earlier take the iPhone chip, OS, memory, etc and just give it a larger screen and keyboard, and a word processor. Kind of like how the Newton was made into the eMate. Then we're talking closer to iPod Touch prices.

But really... I was trying to escape the "put full OSX on a really cheap little machine" idea that is easy to fall into.

We know Snow Leopard is being designed with both Mac OSX and iPhone OSX in mind - so hopefully it will also be ideal for a Netbook/MID style machine. It'd have to use a more powerful ARM or Atom and it'd have to set a very clear, specific, lower expectation of what it does.

Apple is great at cutting back the functions and leaving the core/key functions working very well. If Apple produces a Netbook, expect it NOT to do everything OSX does. Millions of people will scream "why did they remove X, Y, & Z? they crippled it!". But its key functions will run well, look good, and be very attractive to more than 50% of people.

I'd bet on the ARM chip over the Atom. The Atom's are behind P.A. Semi's PWRficient in terms of performance/watt, and they still will be next year. ARM's offerings on the other hand are plenty powerful for a "netbook's" tasks and they are far more efficient than either. The P.A Semi guys Apple bought are probably optimizing the hell out of the Cortex processors cores right now, and I don't think they'll only end up in iPhones.

Also, I don't think there is any reason to run the iPhone OS on a speculated lightweight mobile computer. OS X is light enough to run on G4 computers still, even some that fall below the minimum requirements. The iPhone OS is basically OS X with frameworks more specific to a phone. A few of them can be applied to the Mac OS and replace/supplement older frameworks, but there will be frameworks that are exclusive to each side simply because the devices are different.

If I had to make a prediction, I'd say take a more powerful iPod touch and put it in a Macbook Air's enclosure with a less expensive display and Snow Leopard. It will be thinner, much cheaper (most of the expense is the high quality display and the motherboard), and have much better battery life. I can easily see that selling for ~$699. I don't think we'll ever see any Mac that's cheaper than an iPod though.
post #184 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by HyteProsector View Post

Alright, first off my eBay approval rating is 100%. Thats besides that point. I don't even know what made you question my integrity as a seller.

There's your problem. It's always about you, isn't it? It couldn't have been just a comment that used≠refurbished. If someone buys one of your "refurbs" and it dies in a month, they're screwed, while a real Apple-refurbished/reconditioned machine is warrantied for a year despite not being brand new. Unless you're willing to give them their complete refund after such a failure? Didn't think so. And BTW, 100% doesn't mean much anymore since eBay changed it to reflect only the last 12 months. I have 100%, too, over 1000 and no negatives ever.

Quote:
Anyways... Your wording in the first paragraph was good. "Lugging" around knapsacks?. No one wants to do that. Honestly. I'm trying to rid myself of the things I need to carry around with me. Isn't that part of whats great about being a guy? You don't have to lug a freaking bag with you everywhere you go?

Ah, sounds like you have issues about your masculinity, too. Go to a big city sometime. Someplace with a decent public transit system, like NYC. When people don't drive cars everywhere, they carry everything they may need throughout the course of a day with them. Hence, a bag on almost every back, everywhere you look on the street, on the subway, on the bus, etc. If you think it takes away from your manliness, you should talk to nearly every guy in the city, who's usually carrying a bag of some kind even if he's not carrying a laptop. If you don't believe me, go to Flickr and look at pictures from NYC. Everybody's got them. Young, old, male, female.
post #185 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by bokuwaomar View Post

If I had to make a prediction, I'd say take a more powerful iPod touch and put it in a Macbook Air's enclosure with a less expensive display and Snow Leopard. It will be thinner, much cheaper (most of the expense is the high quality display and the motherboard), and have much better battery life. I can easily see that selling for ~$600.

Yes, that's how to make a cheaper machine. I quite like the idea.
But is it capable of having a full OSX running responsively, on an ARM chip generally (as I'm not aware of its power) and with OSX apps compiled for x86 (do you want Transitive translation?... I know fat binaries are possible of course).

Apple will need to decide whether they want to make a small machine that can run anything OSX runs but will be a bit slow (especially if people turn on all the bells and whistles), or whether they'd rather simplify the interface (for small 9-13" screens) and enforce rules so that multiple programs didn't run simultaneously etc - while making developers convert their Xcode based apps to the new interface requirements, touch screen, and other rules.

Would such a device stand out for its simplicity & speed, or be labelled as crippled?
post #186 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by GregAlexander View Post

Yes, that's how to make a cheaper machine. I quite like the idea.
But is it capable of having a full OSX running responsively, on an ARM chip generally (as I'm not aware of its power) and with OSX apps compiled for x86 (do you want Transitive translation?... I know fat binaries are possible of course).

Apple will need to decide whether they want to make a small machine that can run anything OSX runs but will be a bit slow (especially if people turn on all the bells and whistles), or whether they'd rather simplify the interface (for small 9-13" screens) and enforce rules so that multiple programs didn't run simultaneously etc - while making developers convert their Xcode based apps to the new interface requirements, touch screen, and other rules.

Would such a device stand out for its simplicity & speed, or be labelled as crippled?

The dual core Atoms are hyperthreaded (each core) and with two cores should be capable of running at least some apps simultaneously instead of using app switching like the iPhone. In my experience, the iPhone CPU is not really up to the tasks it presently is handling and its RAM (apparently something in the neighborhood of 128 MB) is totally inadequate.
post #187 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by RBR View Post

The dual core Atoms are hyperthreaded (each core) and with two cores should be capable of running at least some apps simultaneously instead of using app switching like the iPhone.

I haven't read enough comparisons, but I get the impression that an Arm would still be slightly slower than the original Core Solo chips. Is that fair to say?

Of course, use Nvidea's ARM with GPU built in and perhaps Snow Leopard can take advantage. Perhaps Snow Leopard can slow background apps such that the foreground is always responsive (though ram limitations might be more of a problem than CPU time).
post #188 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adjei View Post

Dude well said, glad you are not as clueless as a lot of people out there.

Thanks
post #189 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by GregAlexander View Post

Interesting. I personally would have to have a better notebook... or at least that's my initial reaction. Now that I think about it I'm not so sure.

Mostly I manage emails, use iTunes, use basic pages & numbers, watch movies, remote control Macs & PCs... but I also work with photos & edit movies, create iWeb & Dreamweaver websites. I have lots of smaller apps that _probably_ don't matter.

For me, the photos/web/movies would make me willing to jump from $600 to double or triple that (along with a bigger screen). Though I'd be seriously considering an iMac + Netbook combo!

What functionality must you have that upsells you?

The iMac + netbook combo is exactly right. No one uses these things as their main computer. Netbooks are about two things; the first is low price, the second is having a computer- a real computer- that is so small and light, you don't even have to think about taking it places. But if it can't run the same apps as your other computers, then it loses a lot of the appeal for a lot of people.

The limitations of the netbook are self-evident: slow processor, limited memory and storage, small screen and keyboard. People who can't handle that, or who only want one computer, would be upsold to a bigger, more expensive machine. I don't think a netbook would cost Apple very many sales, but someone whose sole computer is an iMac, might pick one up for class or the coffee shop.
post #190 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by GregAlexander View Post

I haven't read enough comparisons, but I get the impression that an Arm would still be slightly slower than the original Core Solo chips. Is that fair to say?

You're confusing ARM chips with Intel's Atom.
post #191 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by FuturePastNow View Post

Netbooks are about two things; the first is low price, the second is having a computer- a real computer- that is so small and light, you don't even have to think about taking it places. But if it can't run the same apps as your other computers, then it loses a lot of the appeal for a lot of people.

You skipped my question - what apps do you specifically need on your Netbook, without which you'd rather buy a full function notebook. :-)

It sounds as though you'd be happy to have a slow/plodding Netbook that did everything than a fast responsive Netbook that did basic word processing plus web/email/im/music/movies - but not every OSX app.
post #192 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by RBR View Post

The dual core Atoms are hyperthreaded (each core) and with two cores should be capable of running at least some apps simultaneously instead of using app switching like the iPhone. In my experience, the iPhone CPU is not really up to the tasks it presently is handling and its RAM (apparently something in the neighborhood of 128 MB) is totally inadequate.

iPhone performance probably has more to do with the amount of RAM available more than the speed of the processor. That said, the newer ARM dual core processors are said to be able to scale up into the 1 GHz range. Add on a decent amount of RAM and hardware accelerated audio and video and it's a perfectly functional machine. Computers are idle most of the time, only operating in short bursts, so after a certain point higher frequency processors are only useful for smoothing out multitasking and long and intensive computations, such as compiling an entire operating system and its applications.
post #193 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gregg Thurman View Post

Like nearly all "journalists" this guy has no experience or financial education.

All economic slowdowns/recessions have a finite life. In the US the longest recession, since WWII, lasted 18 months. This one is now 12 months old. That means this has only 6 months to go before it too fades into our memories. That duration isn't anywhere near long enough to cause Apple any concern about "cash strapped" consumers.

This is just another bullsh*t article based on nothing more than the author's desire to generate hits.

I got a news flash for you, Gregg. This ain't your father's post-WWII recession, it's your grandfather's great speculative crash. The world's responding differently to it than it did in the '20's and '30's but no one knows if all the (some nearly frantic) moves will be enough.

Much of the world's "wealth" has disappeared in a near instant because it was all phony money laundered through hedge funds, banks, brokerages, insurance companies, pension funds, and many other institutions. And having been wiped off the books, there is no replacement source to quickly reflate the economy. 50-100 year old stable businesses are disappearing every day. 20% of house sales are of foreclosures. 10% of owned homes are in danger of falling into foreclosure and unemployment is likely to increase by millions in the next six months, making more homes vulnerable and increasing defaults on credit card payments.

The stock market and unemployment rate will not be at mid-2007 levels six months from now. More like 18-36 months at best. And more dire scenarios are not off the table.

Does this have anything to do with Apple and the netbook business? You can bet it's being avidly discussed at board meetings. Apple IS -- due to its buzz and cachet -- and its somewhat more job-secure clientele -- more recession resistant than many businesses. And, look it up, a fair number of businesses catering to high-end clientele did quite well during the Great Depression while many, many more commodity oriented ones failed.

But A, Inc. cannot simply ignore this economic credit-default-swap crisis tsunami, nor do I think they are doing so. I don't know what the response will be, but having turned the tentative, stumbling mp3 player business into a highly profitable, huge iPod business which itself is morphing into other new businesses (like the App Store and its 2.2M/day downloads), and the pioneering work of creating netbooks in a similar position to where mp3 players were years ago, AND with a great multi-touch OS-X based software system at their disposal, "reinventing the netbook" is not at all out of the question as a possible next move from Dear Leader and company.

Again, the profit and the margins that fuel Apple today for these lower-priced devices would be augmented by sales of new content and the apps such devices will create a new market for, and being Apple, their gross margins on a new family of $450-700 devices could be kept around 40%.

Remember, Apple wouldn't keep refreshing and marketing the affordable Shuffle if they weren't making bank on it -- from the store in this case more than from the device.

So I will say, look out Asus with your EEE's and all you other netbooks come lately.

And I for one am expecting a very interesting MacWorld which will, yes, be colored by events in the larger world.

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post #194 of 256
I *own* an Apple netbook and it is a great machine.
Ok - so it isn't really an Apple computer. It is a MSI Wind running OS X (Macbook Wind).

It's more faster than the G4 Powerbook it replaced, and it is about as light as a Macbook Air. It was also very very inexpensive. Made by Apple, it would be awesome, and an ideal computer for the Education market.

BUT

Apple would have to be crazy to sell one of these machines. The margins are razor thin.
They'd have to sell 4 or 5 netbooks to match the profit of a single Macbook. - And furthermore, those Netbook sales would cannibalize sales of the higher end laptops. It would be a double loss.

Apple has never competed at the low end because profitability is more important than unit volume.

C.
post #195 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by toysandme View Post

That the iPhone, crippled to death as it is, can be used as a netbook has got to be the joke of the year.

Had my phone for a few months now and can type almost as fast on it as I can on my full keyboard.

As for being "crippled", that is a matter of debate; people made the same claim about the MacBook Air and that was all bunk. I know some people who have put their phones to very good use (myself included), and the capabilities are improving with the improving apps coming out. Several have cut and paste, including Zeptopad.

I also find that I use my iPod Touch at home for surfing more than I use my iMac or MacBook Air, so for me it has become my netbook of choice. Add the 3G iPhone that allows me to view the Net anywhere without even popping out a notebook and I am a happy camper.

 

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post #196 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by GregAlexander View Post

.... What exactly would you change in a MB (or MBA) to halve the price while maintaining performance and quality....

Well, it's not precisely about that...
What I'm saying is that I think the market for low end, low weight, low capacity, sub notebooks today is targeted at high income professionals with extra money for a spare computer they wanna carry around and use on the go. A kind of luxury item. Manufacturers target these deliberately because I guess they think sub notebooks are for geeks and pros.

I think it would be a far more useful use of resources, if they managed to market this exact same product for a broader masses of people who would use this low end, low capacity sub notebook as their main computer instead. I think a lot of people would do that, at the right price. A lot of people after all just use a browser, mail and office, and a power cable. No games, no display, no extras.
I know they could do it if they start out with this as a goal. If they start out with a luxury item as a goal, of course they'll end up with a luxury item.

Also Apple's line up would be easier to understand and easier to sell with the Air as the entry level. From entry level to Pro. It would all make sense. Now we've got this luxury entry level Air product in the middle... doesn't make any sense.
post #197 of 256
What's wrong with these guys? Apple give you what's best for you not what you want.
No netbooks to see here . Move along
post #198 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by palegolas View Post

I know they could do it if they start out with this as a goal. If they start out with a luxury item as a goal, of course they'll end up with a luxury item.

Apple is still a boutique vendor in many ways. If they go cheap it's hard to get out of being sonsidered cheap. The Big Three Japanese automakers are an example of not being about to sell a luxury item with a recognized cheap moniker. They finally realized they had to create subsidiary companies with a new branding to sells their wares. This goes with computers too.

Quote:
Also Apple's line up would be easier to understand and easier to sell with the Air as the entry level.

Could you explain in detail how this could this be done? For example, the MBA's CPU by itself is nearly as much as whole netbook so you;'d have to get rid of the SFF, high performance C2D CPU in favour or a under performing Atom processor. That will knock off about $250 from the price. Then you'd have to get rid of the high-quality LED-backlit LCD in favour of a non-backlit TN panel. then you'll have to get rid of the quality keyboard and backlit for a cheap one. As well as move to cheap plastic for the case which will thicken up the device quite a bit while still making it weaker and considerably less attractive and appealing. You'll have to remove the power saving DDR3 RAM, the Nvidia GPU, remove the 1/8" HDD in favour of a 2.5" drive, but since we have to thicken up the case this one is a freebee). Then, even if you get the price in the netbook range you'll have to charge for OS X which will bump the price up considerably over Linux-based machines.

I'd still like to read your take on it, but my point is that Apple could make one, but chooses not to . The same reason why they choose not to sell $400 15" notebooks like HP and Dell. The volume is their but the money isn't. How many netbooks have to be sold to equal the net profit of one MBA sale?
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post #199 of 256
Really guys Atom has a very long way to go if it is ever expected to perform as well as ARM on a perfoance per watt basis. In fact I will go so far as to say it won't ever beat ARM. No matter howany process shrinks Intel can manage against the competition the fact remains that ARM processors are extremely small with very low transistor counts.

As to the performance of iPhone I'd have to say that it is pretty damn good for a gen one device. Especially to considering it's size. Could it be better overall, certainly but what exactly is causing the performance issue? As has been pointed out more RAM could do more for iPhone than a taste processor right now. Of course that depends on how and why you measure performance. IPhone simply wasn't designed for CPU intensive work, on the other hand it is more impressive than my old Mac Plus.

While I consider the netbook market to be a bit of a joke I can see Apple coming out with a tablet that amounts to a Touch on steroids. There is no need for an Intel CPU in such a device as it adds no value what so ever. The reality is that such a device is not a laptop nor a desktop replacement. Rather like Touch it is a device in it's own category that being Internet tablet. Since a modern ARM CPU can easily triple the performance of the current iPhone CPU that won't be an issue. What will be is the capability to run all day on battery power. Atom can't do that in a reasonably sized machine so it is dead in the water. Mobile OS would be fine here if properly extended for multi processing or as commonly stated back ground apps. What you don't want on these devices is traditionally designed desktop apps. The problem is and always will be screen size, these handheld tablets are no place for windowed apps in the sense of desktop machines. Apple simply needs to leverage the good parts of Mobile OS and otherwise extend it to be able to offer up a very nice OS for tablets.

When it comes right down to it I just don't see a huge sustainable demand for netbooks. Yes it is trendy to have one today but the question is how long do such device remain in operation and usefully deployed. From what I'm seeing not that long. The problem is that as more and better software becomes available for things like IPhone there is little rational need for a big netbook. I have very little in the way of software installed on my iPhone and it has already become a primary platform for many tasks. E-Mail is one significant example. The reality is that I can get to the net from anywhere with this device, not even a netbook can do that without a cellular modem. In the end netbooks will die because they are the wrong solution set to the problem of mobile computing.

Dave
post #200 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigpics View Post

I got a news flash for you, Gregg. This ain't your father's post-WWII recession, it's your grandfather's great speculative crash. The world's responding differently to it than it did in the '20's and '30's but no one knows if all the (some nearly frantic) moves will be enough.

Much of the world's "wealth" has disappeared in a near instant because it was all phony money laundered through hedge funds, banks, brokerages, insurance companies, pension funds, and many other institutions. And having been wiped off the books, there is no replacement source to quickly reflate the economy. 50-100 year old stable businesses are disappearing every day. 20% of house sales are of foreclosures. 10% of owned homes are in danger of falling into foreclosure and unemployment is likely to increase by millions in the next six months, making more homes vulnerable and increasing defaults on credit card payments.

The stock market and unemployment rate will not be at mid-2007 levels six months from now. More like 18-36 months at best. And more dire scenarios are not off the table.

Does this have anything to do with Apple and the netbook business? You can bet it's being avidly discussed at board meetings. Apple IS -- due to its buzz and cachet -- and its somewhat more job-secure clientele -- more recession resistant than many businesses. And, look it up, a fair number of businesses catering to high-end clientele did quite well during the Great Depression while many, many more commodity oriented ones failed.

But A, Inc. cannot simply ignore this economic credit-default-swap crisis tsunami, nor do I think they are doing so. I don't know what the response will be, but having turned the tentative, stumbling mp3 player business into a highly profitable, huge iPod business which itself is morphing into other new businesses (like the App Store and its 2.2M/day downloads), and the pioneering work of creating netbooks in a similar position to where mp3 players were years ago, AND with a great multi-touch OS-X based software system at their disposal, "reinventing the netbook" is not at all out of the question as a possible next move from Dear Leader and company.

Again, the profit and the margins that fuel Apple today for these lower-priced devices would be augmented by sales of new content and the apps such devices will create a new market for, and being Apple, their gross margins on a new family of $450-700 devices could be kept around 40%.

Remember, Apple wouldn't keep refreshing and marketing the affordable Shuffle if they weren't making bank on it -- from the store in this case more than from the device.

So I will say, look out Asus with your EEE's and all you other netbooks come lately.

And I for one am expecting a very interesting MacWorld which will, yes, be colored by events in the larger world.

In 3 Quarters time, the markets will have recovered around 3,000 points on the NYSE and only after 2 Quarters time the notion of targeting a netbook will be nothing but a loss.

I hate to break it to you, but these price points are addressed 2 quarters and sometimes longer prior to the products pending release.

This is DOA by Intel and AMD. It sure as hell is DOA by Apple.
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