Claims of camera-equipped Apple tablet disputed

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014
Conflicting reports have emerged this week on whether Apple's forthcoming tablet will include a camera, with one company executive suggesting the device could be used for Web conferencing, while a technology pundit disputes those claims.



In a brief mention Tuesday on his blog, Daring Fireball, John Gruber disputed a claim made earlier in the week by an executive with France Telecom. Stephane Richard had spoke briefly about the prospect of video conferencing with Apple's tablet.



"For what it's worth, I'm hearing there is no camera, webcam or otherwise, on The Tablet," Gruber wrote Tuesday.



France Telecom is the owner of wireless provider Orange, which exists in numerous countries across Europe. Orange on Monday issued a retraction to Richard's statements, and said the executive was "merely confirming that he is aware of the speculation surrounding a launch and that Orange would be delighted to have such a product were it ever available."



Orange is the fifth largest wireless carrier in the world, with more than 189 million customers. With Apple rumored to hold an event Jan. 27 to announce the device, some had speculated that Richard could have possible inside information on the tablet, if it were to be a 3G-connected device that would run on the Orange network.



Last year, AppleInsider first reported that the 10-inch, 3G-enabled table, akin to a jumbo iPod touch, would arrive in early 2010. Recent rumors have suggested the tablet could be compatible with the largest wireless provider in the U.S., Verizon. Access to a CDMA network would be a break from the iPhone, which currently only operates on GSM-based networks like AT&T.



Prior to Richard's comment about video conferencing, little was said about the prospect of a camera on Apple's still-unannounced device. A recent report by The Wall Street Journal said the hardware would ship in March, and would serve as a "multimedia device that will let people watch movies and television shows, play games, surf the Internet and read electronic books and newspapers."



The tablet's potential role as an e-reader began to pick up steam last year when rumors surfaced about Apple contacting print publications about providing their content for the touchscreen device. At the time, it was said that people with The New York Times, McGraw Hill and Oberlin Press were involved in the Cupertino, Calif., company's plans.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 132
    gazoobeegazoobee Posts: 3,754member
    I haven't mentioned it much since everyone seems to expect a camera (and also since we know relatively nothing about the tablets specs), but it doesn't actually make sense for this thing to have a camera at all, and personally, I hope there isn't one.
  • Reply 2 of 132
    [QUOTE=AppleInsider;1548294]Conflicting reports have emerged this week on whether Apple's forthcoming tablet will include a camera, with one company executive suggesting the device could be used for Web conferencing, while a technology pundit disputes those claims.



    Who cares? Why don't we just wait and see
  • Reply 3 of 132
    I would have thought it would absolutely have to have a camera, unless they want to keep it firmly below full computer functionality.
  • Reply 4 of 132
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post


    I haven't mentioned it much since everyone seems to expect a camera (and also since we know relatively nothing about the tablets specs), but it doesn't actually make sense for this thing to have a camera at all, and personally, I hope there isn't one.



    Funny. I think it doesn't make sense for it to NOT have forward facing webcam. A tablet is a fantastic hardware format for videochat.
  • Reply 5 of 132
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post


    I haven't mentioned it much since everyone seems to expect a camera (and also since we know relatively nothing about the tablets specs), but it doesn't actually make sense for this thing to have a camera at all, and personally, I hope there isn't one.



    May be there are two different tablets, one with camera and web and the other without. May be we will find out soon. You need the camera and web for video conferencing and video chat. May be the cheaper one does not have it but used for everything except web and video purposes
  • Reply 6 of 132
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post


    I haven't mentioned it much since everyone seems to expect a camera (and also since we know relatively nothing about the tablets specs), but it doesn't actually make sense for this thing to have a camera at all, and personally, I hope there isn't one.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by dak splunder View Post


    Funny. I think it doesn't make sense for it to NOT have forward facing webcam. A tablet is a fantastic hardware format for videochat.



    I can see reasons to include it and exclude it. Video chat is the major reason to include it but how effective and useful will this be. How many people use their webcam for video chats outside of some initial novelty? Will this perpetually wireless device likely running ARM be a prime candidate for video chatting? I can see video chat being more useable on the iPhone than on a tablet.
  • Reply 7 of 132
    isaidsoisaidso Posts: 750member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post


    I haven't mentioned it much since everyone seems to expect a camera (and also since we know relatively nothing about the tablets specs), but it doesn't actually make sense for this thing to have a camera at all, and personally, I hope there isn't one.



    Absolutely right. And there will not be a camera. The percentage of people who would (try to) use this device to teleconference (beyond tweens playing with it for the novelty before they get bored with it) would be miniscule.

    Can you imagine a multi user business conference, with people all holding these tablets out at arms-length; trying to hold them steady; trying to touch and scroll on things; meanwhile inside each participants video window, each talking-head is bobbing around; zooming in and out of frame.

    It would be hilarious. People would get sea-sick.

    Thank god Apple is a company that really thinks things through before moving forward. And even then; only one sure footed step at a time.
  • Reply 8 of 132
    chris_cachris_ca Posts: 2,543member
    Accessories!
  • Reply 9 of 132
    gazoobeegazoobee Posts: 3,754member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by dak splunder View Post


    Funny. I think it doesn't make sense for it to NOT have forward facing webcam. A tablet is a fantastic hardware format for videochat.



    My actual reason for not wanting it is I personally wouldn't use it.



    Truth and honesty aside, ... a good reason that a tablet with a web cam would make a bad video conferencing device is that you'd have to prop it up somehow.



    A lot of people seem to think that the tablet will come with a flip-stand on the back or some other means of propping it up so you can use a keyboard with it, but I disagree. If you don't buy into the "it has a built in way to prop it up" part, then it makes an absolutely horrible video conferencing device.



    A forward facing camera on the iPhone would make a better video conferencing device in that you hold it in your hand and point it at your face. There would be a lot of sickening motion and flipping around, but nothing compared to the same person trying to hold up a tablet.



    Desktop computers make far better video conferencing devices and already exist. I'm not sure what (other than being outside), a tablet could add that would make people start video calling each other when they mostly don't do it now on their computers. Again, putting the same tech on the iPhone makes more sense.
  • Reply 10 of 132
    On this topic, I'll take clues from the musings of a senior exec from a company that has 189 million telephone subscribers than some tech blogger (I've never heard of this guy -- but that's not saying much).



    Note that Orange did not issue a denial, but merely a retraction (a bit scared of Steve, I guess).
  • Reply 11 of 132
    irelandireland Posts: 17,737member
    Next you know it webcams will be used for Skype. Wow, modern technology.
  • Reply 12 of 132
    pmzpmz Posts: 3,433member
    Not really a big deal. 3rd party accessory if you absolutely need it
  • Reply 13 of 132
    irelandireland Posts: 17,737member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    "For what it's worth, I'm hearing there is no camera, webcam or otherwise, on The Tablet," Gruber wrote Tuesday.



    Really, cameras are so cheap to add they'll put one it. I think Gruber is misguided on this one. It's a webcam, nothing new, it'll have one - just like all Macs.
  • Reply 14 of 132
    mjtomlinmjtomlin Posts: 2,422member
    Personally, I'm getting tired of all he said, she said speculation going around the web. We should be happy knowing that no one got the iPhone right. So Apple is probably feeding the frenzy themselves with false information. And then just like the iPhone, BAM!



    I do believe Steve Jobs himself said, none of the rumors come close. Which means one of two things, either there isn't a tablet/slate or that it is actually a completely different kind of device.
  • Reply 15 of 132
    cmf2cmf2 Posts: 1,427member
    Wouldn't a tablet laying flat on a table have its camera pointing up? What good would that do?Is the tablet going to have a built in stand? That seems very un-Apple. Are you going to hold the tablet in front of you for the duration of your conversation? That also seems very un-Apple. What about a third party camera accesory that plugs into the dock connector and can be adjusted to face you even if the tablet is laying flat? That sounds very Apple like.



    Given the limited number of people that would actually make use of a webcam and the lack of an elegant way to present video conferencing, I think this will be left up to third parties to develop. I also hope no one expected a camera like the iPhones... Taking pictures with a tablet would almost be as bad as taking pictures with a laptop... We will see soon enough.
  • Reply 16 of 132
    phongphong Posts: 219member
    Good. It'd be incredibly awkward. Now the tablet is just starting to sound ordinarily awkward.
  • Reply 17 of 132
    dreyfus2dreyfus2 Posts: 1,072member
    Well, guessing your conference partner by looking at (double/triple/etc.) chins might be fun...



    I still have problems to buy that Verizon story. Apple will not build a CDMA-only device. It will either have one of the new chips supporting both systems, be GSM only, or have no 3G modem at all (or just a slot that telcos can use to provide that functionality).
  • Reply 18 of 132
    rmm21rmm21 Posts: 29member
    I don't know about a camera, but my bones are telling me this thing will have two processors(an ARM and x86) to cover both camps: the long battery group with Apps store and the full OSX group. Similar to what the HTC Shift did.



    I wouldn't mind if it did have a camera though.
  • Reply 19 of 132
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Ireland View Post


    Really, cameras are so cheap to add they'll put one it. I think Gruber is misguided on this one. It's a webcam, nothing new, it'll have one - just like all Macs.



    Normally i'd agree with you where Mac's are concerned but this isn't going to be a Mac.

    If it exists and it's going to be something new, then a webcam isn't a cert.
  • Reply 20 of 132
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Ireland View Post


    Really, cameras are so cheap to add they'll put one it. I think Gruber is misguided on this one. It's a webcam, nothing new, it'll have one - just like all Macs.



    +1



    I really don't think they'll release this thing without a camera.. seems silly to even suggest that they would omit such a useful, familiar feature at this point especially given the landscape, ie; Facebook, Twitter, Youtube etc.
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