iPods, MacBooks, iMacs up next on Apple's 2008 roadmap

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014
With a multinational iPhone 3G launch now successfully under its belt, electronics maker Apple Inc. is preparing to close out the year with a final phase of product introductions that will stretch over the course of the next two months.



Included on the company's roadmap are new iPods, overhauled notebooks, and refreshed iMacs, according to people familiar with the situation. They say availability of those products should follow that particular progression, with a handful of ancillary announcements staggered in between.



It will all kick off in September when the Cupertino-based firm attempts to dazzle the media through the showmanship of chief executive Steve Jobs, who will headline an event believed to be tentatively scheduled for the second week of the month.



Cheaper and slightly modified iPod touch players, new iPod nanos and related service announcements are expected to take center stage, as Apple emphasizes a particular focus on pushing adoption of its fledgling multi-touch platform and App Store. However, and despite on-and-off-again background noise, the event will not give birth to a new breed of handheld multi-touch device, those familiar with Apple's plans say.



At the same time, the scope of the event remains somewhat of an enigma. Internet reports have failed to pinpoint a precise agenda, as it's unclear whether the the event will dual as a launch pad for Apple's next-generation Mac notebooks, or whether those systems will be presented at a separate forum.



While those sources close to AppleInsider have not addressed the matter specifically, they were explicit in stating that availability of new MacBook and MacBook Pro systems would succeed the introduction of iPods at a different point in time -- suggesting the Macs will come later in the month, if not the next (October). Of course, Apple could certainly choose to pre-announce the systems alongside iPods, but it would represent the first time the two distinct product lines share the same stage in nearly four years.



Expectations for the new notebooks have been outlined in a series of reports (1, 2, 3) over the year. Both will see their first industrial design overhaul since adopting Intel processors over two years ago. Most notable will be the 13-inch MacBook's metamorphosis from a plastic-wrapped portable to one clad in aluminum and stainless steel.



Like the upcoming redesign of the MacBook Pro, the MacBook will be highlighted by aesthetic revisions reminiscent of those used on the new MacBook Air and the latest aluminum iMacs, such as instances of matte black on portions of the casings and tapering around the edges to produce a slimming effect. Internally, both are also rumored to sport a mysterious chipset that is something other than Intel Corp.'s Montevina. (Note: this should not be confused with the CPU, or primary Intel processor.)









The new MacBook Pro (pictured above) will also sport a new form battery cover that spans the width of the system, also providing access to the notebook's hard disk drive when released via a latch on the bottom of the casing. Together, the redesigns of the MacBook and MacBook Pro are radical enough that they'll warrant a special introduction.



Separately, Apple is also planning to refresh its line of 20- and 24-inch iMac seasons ahead of the holidays. People familiar with these plans have described the refresh to consist of 'speed bumps' rather than major internal or external changes. Based on the roadmap presented to AppleInsider, these systems would debut later this fall following the release of the new MacBooks, making their way to market with little fanfare.







Apple's Mac Pro, which has failed to make cut in consecutive holiday quarters, as well as the long-lost Mac mini, were not mentioned amongst the company's plans for the remainder of 2008. However, that doesn't necessarily preclude them from making an appearance; AppleInsider can only report on what it has heard.



The Mac mini, in particular, remains an intriguing story. After entering a state of indefinite limbo two and a half years ago, it was reported that the miniature Mac had all but been thrown to the wolves. It was only amid increasing economic uncertainty earlier this year that signs of life were spotted in an area of Apple's labs reserved for the company's most cost-affordable system.



Sources reported that a major overhaul was underway -- the most significant in the mini's short history. That was only five months ago, however. By comparison, it took the Mac maker nearly a year to deliver the MacBook Air to market from the time AppleInsider first reported functional prototypes in existence on Apple's campus.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 204
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,167member
    Usually a good time to buy AAPL, the stock seems to dip prior to these events.
  • Reply 2 of 204
    marzetta7marzetta7 Posts: 1,320member
    Bring on the Blu-ray enabled iMacs!
  • Reply 3 of 204
    kotatsukotatsu Posts: 1,010member
    I'm waiting on an iMac with a quad core Montevina chipset in it, and a blu-ray writer.
  • Reply 4 of 204
    frank777frank777 Posts: 5,786member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    ...they were explicit in stating that availability of new MacBook and MacBook Pro systems would proceed the introduction of iPods...



    Precede?



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Internally, both are also rumored to sport a mysterious chipset that is something other than Intel Corp.'s Montevina.



    The margin-reducing Product Transition? Is Cringley finally right?



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    The new MacBook Pro (pictured above) will also sport a new form battery cover that spans the width of the system, also providing access to the notebook's hard disk drive when released via a latch on the bottom of the casing. Together, the redesigns of the MacBook and MacBook Pro are radical enough that they'll warrant a special introduction.



    Separately, Apple is also planning to refresh its line of 20- and 24-inch iMac seasons ahead of the holidays. People familiar with these plans have described the refresh to consist of 'speed bumps' rather than major internal or external changes.



    I still cannot understand why the 15" MacBook Pro can be easily engineered to allow consumer access to the hard drive, but the 24" iMac cannot.
  • Reply 5 of 204
    calguycalguy Posts: 80member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by marzetta7 View Post


    Bring on the Blu-ray enabled iMacs!



    And lets not forget the MBP

    Yea, Yea, Yea to Blu-ray!!!
  • Reply 6 of 204
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    An improved iSight camera please.
  • Reply 7 of 204
    virgil-tb2virgil-tb2 Posts: 1,416member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post


    ... I still cannot understand why the 15" MacBook Pro can be easily engineered to allow consumer access to the hard drive, but the 24" iMac cannot.



    Cause an iMac doesn't have a battery door?
  • Reply 8 of 204
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 12,756member
    After buying a MBP in the early spring and a 3G iPhone very recently I'm unfortunately spent. This could be very frustrating if the new MB are as innovative as implied in some of the rumors. Ipod wise there doesn't seem to be much hope for an iPod evolved to the configuration I'm hoping for. So at least that is not likely to hurt.



    By the way I'm very happy with my MBP, it has been a better transition than I could have hoped for.



    Dave



    PS



    If you want to see an interesting movie about California wines see BOTTLE SHOCK!



    D
  • Reply 9 of 204
    abster2coreabster2core Posts: 2,501member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by marzetta7 View Post


    Bring on the Blu-ray enabled iMacs!



    And how much of a premium would you be willing to pay?



    Remember that the Blu-Ray Disc Association has yet to allow manufacturing in China.
  • Reply 10 of 204
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Separately, Apple is also planning to refresh its line of 20- and 24-inch iMac seasons ahead of the holidays. People familiar with these plans have described the refresh to consist of 'speed bumps' rather than major internal or external changes.



    I wonder how they are going to speed bump the CPUs in the iMacs with no internal changes given that the iMacs currently use a custom Santa Rosa chipset and custom mobile Penryns to support a 1066MHz FSB and DDR2 800 on the Santa Rosa chipset which is only officially qualified for 800Mhz FSB and DDR2 667 operation? It would make more sense and probably take less effort to just switch to the Montevina chipset and Montevina qualified Penryns for official 1066MHz FSB support and so they can bump things up to DDR3 1066. That way they don't have to keep trying to overclock last generation parts. Of course, switching to Montevina would be an internal change, but whether it's "major" can be debated.
  • Reply 11 of 204
    bdkennedy1bdkennedy1 Posts: 1,459member
    I wonder what they'll do with the iMac. The new design is only a year old.
  • Reply 12 of 204
    nagrommenagromme Posts: 2,834member
    Black keys on the iMac please. Lighted like the Air (Even the wireless one could have that, with a sleep timer and an option to turn it off.)
  • Reply 13 of 204
    stubeckstubeck Posts: 140member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Abster2core View Post


    And how much of a premium would you be willing to pay?



    Remember that the Blu-Ray Disc Association has yet to allow manufacturing in China.



    Probably close to the $200 you can buy one for now from newegg. Apple will probably charge much more though.



    I just hope with all these announcements they haven't done too much. Just the problems Apple has had since introducing the iPhone (pushing back Leopard while removing features, mobileme, product delays, etc) makes me nervous when they announce more than one big thing a quarter.
  • Reply 14 of 204
    neilmneilm Posts: 598member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post


    Is Cringley finally right?



    Let's not wander that far into the realm of the improbable...
  • Reply 15 of 204
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bdkennedy1 View Post


    I wonder what they'll do with the iMac. The new design is only a year old.



    New processors, new chipset, and new graphics, but I bet they won't change the design at all. Intel has mobile quad-cores now, but they're very expensive.
  • Reply 16 of 204
    xflarexflare Posts: 199member
    Awwww... poor Mac Mini, no one seems to like you.
  • Reply 17 of 204
    I am looking for a mac mini upgrade. I use a 20" ACD, don't care for the iMac screen, and really don't want or need to spend money or limited space in my area for a Mac Pro. It's gross overkill for what I do. My existing mac mini is in pretty good shape but an upgrade would be welcome.



    The mini really hits the spot. It's not just money, it hits a different market need than the iMac or MP.
  • Reply 18 of 204
    Apple's Multi-Touch technology is seriously stunted on the small screen of the iPhone and iPod Touch. I love those products for what they are, but zooming and panning the web on them is really getting old. Apple is sitting on a gold-mine tech here. Let's get the iPhone OS's touch GUI on something just a little bigger!
  • Reply 20 of 204
    solarsolar Posts: 84member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by kotatsu View Post


    I'm waiting on an iMac with a quad core Montevina chipset in it, and a blu-ray writer.



    Good luck with that.

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