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Economy, opportunity seen leading to $599 Apple netbook - Page 7

post #241 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

The processor powering the Android phone is not in contention for Apple products.

Although this is not actually the processor in the Android, it is an outgrowth of it. Whether Apple would choose to use it or not is not terribly important. Its development should push development of the other processors to incorporate similar capabilities. The device that Snapdragon appears to be destined for has a 4" screen and so is not a netbook as such.
post #242 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by FuturePastNow

People like you are the reason there's a lot of hate for Mac users out there.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Boogerman2000 View Post

Exactly right.

It's people like you two (brain dead) that makes Mac users feel superior.
post #243 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by RBR View Post

Although this is not actually the processor in the Android, it is an outgrowth of it. Whether Apple would choose to use it or not is not terribly important. Its development should push development of the other processors to incorporate similar capabilities. The device that Snapdragon appears to be destined for has a 4" screen and so is not a netbook as such.

Apple already has a line of processors it's going to deploy future handheld products on.
post #244 of 256
Netbooks sure are awesome computers for little kids/students and complement a home desktop well for those interested in occasional portable internet.

What makes the Macbook Air so expensive? Since it does much less stuff than a Macbook it should cost less.
post #245 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dunks View Post

What makes the Macbook Air so expensive? Since it does much less stuff than a Macbook it should cost less.

Thinner and lighter = more expensive

There are those that argue "Please, give me a fat, bulky heavy laptop. The size is unimportant, I don't care if it's heavy - as long as it's cheap and runs OSX well.

Apple doesn't want to cater for those users.
post #246 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by GregAlexander View Post

Thinner and lighter = more expensive

There are those that argue "Please, give me a fat, bulky heavy laptop. The size is unimportant, I don't care if it's heavy - as long as it's cheap and runs OSX well.

Apple doesn't want to cater for those users.

+
More expensive 1.8" HDD hard drive (even with less storage capacity than 2.5" HDDs)
More expensive small package low voltage cpu/chipset ($284/316 vs $200/241 for the cpu only)
More expensive LED-BL display (even vs the new 13" MacBooks, as far as the reviews indicate)
Build in less quantities, makes everything more expensive too.

The base MBA is "just" $200 more than the $1599 MacBook, but the MBA has a more expensive cpu, HDD and display, even if it lacks the ODD and some ports.
If you compare the prices with the 128GB SSD ($2199 for the 2.4GHz MB and $2299 for the 1.6GHz MBA) the difference is just $100.
Of course you get a slower computer with less ports, but that's the price to pay to get a thinner lighter computer.

The only thing that bugs me in Apple's pricing is the $200 for the upgrade from 1.60 to 1.86GHz cpu: the price difference in bulk is just $32 for the cpu. It should be a no more than $75 option.
post #247 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kolchak View Post

It will certainly have more battery space than any iPod/iPhone device. The larger footprint virtually guarantees that even if thinness was a priority.

No not really! Again it is an issue of trade offs. A thinner battery might have less capacity for one. Also Apple could decide to partition the case in a way that nothing overlaps internally making for restrcted battery space. The reality is that a slightly larger Touch device does not assure more battery space.

There is one other variable here and that is the continued inprovement in batteries. Batteries are simply improving on a yearly basis so a given area will provide more power in the future.
Quote:


Look inside battery packs from Apple laptops and you'll find cylindrical lithium cells. And all those figures are for playing music. Do anything else and the battery life plummets. Video playback at half brightness can net close to the claimed 6 hours, but I wouldn't want to watch six hours of video at half brightness.

Obviously you have not looked inside modern Apple products lately.
Quote:


Everything idles. No CPU is running full out all the time. It's stop and go, mostly stop.

Yep and Intel hardware is so bad at idle in comparison to ARM that currently it isn't even worth discussing. This doesn't take into account any power savings PA Semi might be able to squeeze out of a new device. Atom simply isn't a contender here.
Quote:


Time will tell. ARM has found its niche, but I don't see it as a player outside of that niche.

Their niche is extremely low power RISC hardware. That hardware has recently become very impressive performance wise. As such people have started to take note.

On these sorts of platforms the only thing that really matters is that power usage. Apps aren't an issue because to really leverage the small devices you need apps built around different frameworks than desktop apps. IPhone has already demonstrated the importance of having a user interface that is suitable for the device, small tablets need to build on this.
Quote:


http://www.ifixit.com/Guide/First-Lo...sDUm-large.jpg

Note the battery charger/USB controller chip. There are a lot of chips there, so Apple isn't putting a lot on that ARM CPU.

It is more or less an off the shelf chip so what do you expect? In any event you won't find analog stuff on future SoC either. You are just wasting time looking at what is on the board but rather you should be looking at what is missing. Start with the graphics chip. In any event the bigger question to ask yourself is how big the board would be if Atom was the driving CPU.
[/quote]

The point wasn't that the Atom could be smaller than the ARM, but that it could be plenty small enough for a small netbook.[/QUOTE]

The problem is size is everything on such devices. The space saved with an ARM solution could mean space for a Flash chip and an I/O socket. Or a bigger battery which ARM is better able to leverage. The problem is that ever square inch does matter especially if you want innovate in other areas such as thinnest and weight.

Look at it this way do you think Atom could make for a successful device that is say 3/8" thick or less and passively cooled? I don't think so. Right now ARM really is the only game in town if you want to innovate.


Dave
post #248 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

The processor powering the Android phone is not in contention for Apple products.

Granted it is obvious that Apple is going it's own way with a ARM powered product but it is still ARM and it still has the potential to have the same core. What I imagine Apple is doing right now is surrounding that core with the I/O it specifically needs and the IP it doesn't want the rest of the world to have. At it's heart though will be ARM.

As it is the link to Snapdragon should be of interest to people in this thread because it shows what is commonly possible to integrate on these devices. We are talking real computer systems on a chip. What is even more compelling is that qualcomm is just one of a number of companies producing these high integration devices. Apple may roll it's own but they will have lots of competition.

Dave
post #249 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

Granted it is obvious that Apple is going it's own way with a ARM powered product but it is still ARM and it still has the potential to have the same core. What I imagine Apple is doing right now is surrounding that core with the I/O it specifically needs and the IP it doesn't want the rest of the world to have. At it's heart though will be ARM.

As it is the link to Snapdragon should be of interest to people in this thread because it shows what is commonly possible to integrate on these devices. We are talking real computer systems on a chip. What is even more compelling is that qualcomm is just one of a number of companies producing these high integration devices. Apple may roll it's own but they will have lots of competition.

Dave

Congratulations, Dave!

That is exactly the point.

Nothing happens in a vacuum. Not even behind closed doors at the mother ship. Snapdragon shows what is possible, indeed, what Apple will have to compete with. Let us hope that Apple has "read the tea leaves" and is working on a highly integrated system such as Snapdragon.

Cheers
post #250 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by mjteix View Post

that's the price to pay to get a thinner lighter computer.

Yep that was my point in my simple version of the answer.
Nice to see more detail for the guy who asked.
post #251 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by FuturePastNow View Post

People like you are the reason there's a lot of hate for Mac users out there.

Nah. People like him are reason so many think Macs are being used only by Paris Hilton and other legally blondes
post #252 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by GregAlexander View Post

Thinner and lighter = more expensive

I see this printed a lot and frankly it is BS. For what one gets the AIR should be the cheapest Mac going.
Quote:
There are those that argue "Please, give me a fat, bulky heavy laptop. The size is unimportant, I don't care if it's heavy - as long as it's cheap and runs OSX well.

Apple doesn't want to cater for those users.

I'm not sure if Apple cares to whom it's machines appeal to. I would suspect that their goal is good performance and the perception of quality. The problem right now though is that Apple is struggling with quality. That may be due to the newness of the Nvidia hardware or something else, what ever it is they need to get things under control. Maybe it is time to stop managing projects based on deadlines, the resultant quality problems killed the auto industry and will have the same impact on Apple if things slip much more.



Dave
post #253 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by RBR View Post

Congratulations, Dave!

That is exactly the point.

The world could become a very interesting place when these chips become commonly available. Apple will certainly be in a position to drive the industry. This will especially be the case if they can move a new Cortex core to 45nm.

What people need to realize is that many of these ARM cores run on older processes and still whip the competition. It is a given that Apple will push hard for state of the art performance on at least one variant.

I say atleast one variant because I suspect that we will see an improved iPhone, of the current design, within 6 months. This will be a faster lower power processor complex to keep that variant competitive in the marketplace. It won't excite a lot of people and knowing Apple they will forget to increase the amount of RAM on the device.

The more interesting processor will be much more capable with multiple cores. How many cores is a good question but two would be the minimal number. This unit would be for larger Touch devices with a slant towards gaming and movies. The same processor would also go into a larger iPhone, a Newton 2 like device and a larger tablet targeted at the netbook crowd.

In other words what I'm saying is that Apple is likely working on at least two custom SoC solutions for release next year. One for the current iPhone and smaller devices and a more robust SMP device for higher performance hardware.
Quote:
Nothing happens in a vacuum. Not even behind closed doors at the mother ship. Snapdragon shows what is possible, indeed, what Apple will have to compete with. Let us hope that Apple has "read the tea leaves" and is working on a highly integrated system such as Snapdragon.

Cheers

Well I honestly think they are and for some devices I dont think they are affraid to look outside of Apple. Qualcomm and TI are just two possibilities. As pointed out ARM is widely licensed and available in many configurations right off the shelf. I could see Apple buying off the shelf for a low end IPhone for example.

What really interest me though is what if anything will go into silicon that is Apple IP. Will it be custom power saving features, custom co processors, a built in video memory array or something else. This isn't to far off in left field but one possibility would be a PCI Express interface.

Now stay with me folks as here is the thought. Apple uses some of the unimplemented pins on the dock connector for a PCI-E interface. This would make for some really interesting docks especially for faster and larger Touch devices or tablets. Your next Touch might dock with an AV station that provides a faster GPU to drive your TV to act as a multimedia console. That is a console that can do games, video and web surf. The brain of that console can slip in your pocket the minute you leave the house. Cool idea!

I just see so many possibilities with this new technology that it is hard to get the mind to slow down. The processor is only part of the game too. Imagine these devices with a 128 or 256 GB of Flash storage or whatever replaces flash in a year or two.

Dave
post #254 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

Repetition does not breed truth! I see this printed a lot and frankly it is BS. For what one gets the AIR should be the cheapest Mac going.

That goes both ways. You can keep saying "but tiny shouldn't cost any more" it won't change reality :-)

So let me put this another way...

You think the Air is too expensive. Well, luckily Apple DOES offer a faster laptop with the same screen size and it's quite a bit cheaper - and they build in a DVD drive. The ram is different, the battery is different, the chip is different, the hard disk is different - all which end up saving you some $$$$. As you think size is unimportant, I'd really recommend it for you instead of the Air. Infact ANYONE who doesn't care about the size/weight should NEVER look at the MBA. Just get a regular MacBook.
post #255 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

The more interesting processor will be much more capable with multiple cores. How many cores is a good question but two would be the minimal number.

Careful, you just might get a job as an analyst.

"We don't know how many cores the new multi-core chip will have, but 2 would be the minimal number"

Sorry just had to make fun of this comment. :-)

(edit: I did mean this as a joke. Only just noticed it's the same poster as my above post where I DO disagree strongly).
post #256 of 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

No not really! Again it is an issue of trade offs. A thinner battery might have less capacity for one. Also Apple could decide to partition the case in a way that nothing overlaps internally making for restrcted battery space. The reality is that a slightly larger Touch device does not assure more battery space.

There's the flaw in your argument. Most of us aren't fixated on a "slightly larger Touch device." We want a netbook, which tends to be quite a bit bigger.

Quote:
There is one other variable here and that is the continued inprovement in batteries. Batteries are simply improving on a yearly basis so a given area will provide more power in the future.

They're not improving very fast. Engineers routinely complain that while computer tech advances quickly, the battery tech to run portable devices advances glacially. You're not going to see batteries suddenly add 10-20% capacity within a year or two. If there were that kind of progress in the field, we'd all be driving electric cars by now.

Quote:
Obviously you have not looked inside modern Apple products lately.

Regardless of the form factor, battery packs are still comprised of some form of cells wired in series. It's basic chemistry. No single battery cell can produce 10.8v.

Quote:
On these sorts of platforms the only thing that really matters is that power usage. Apps aren't an issue because to really leverage the small devices you need apps built around different frameworks than desktop apps. IPhone has already demonstrated the importance of having a user interface that is suitable for the device, small tablets need to build on this.

Again, for some reason, while the title of the threat references netbooks and most people want an Apple netbook, you see only a slightly larger tablet to the exclusion of everything else. I know I wouldn't buy an overgrown iPhone. Having owned both a 2.5G iPhone and first gen iPod touch, I found them way too sluggish and the essentially unitasking OS way too limiting.

Quote:
The problem is size is everything on such devices. The space saved with an ARM solution could mean space for a Flash chip and an I/O socket. Or a bigger battery which ARM is better able to leverage. The problem is that ever square inch does matter especially if you want innovate in other areas such as thinnest and weight.

Look at it this way do you think Atom could make for a successful device that is say 3/8" thick or less and passively cooled? I don't think so. Right now ARM really is the only game in town if you want to innovate.

Time will tell. For most people, the biggest draw is software, software, software. Apple itself says the iPhone CPU lacks the horsepower to run Flash (not Flash Lite). Given that current netbooks can run as much as 10 hours on a charge while using current generation Atom processors, it's strange that you dismiss these and upcoming Intel CPUs while giving all battery advantages to ARM.
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