Chinese newspaper says Apple building a netbook

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014
The Chinese-language Commercial Times is reporting Monday that a well-known touch-panel supplier will begin delivering displays for an Apple 'netbook' sometime later this year.



According to the report, which was relayed by DigiTimes, Taiwan-based Wintek will start shipping the panels to the Cupertino-based Mac maker sometime during the third quarter of the year for an official launch at an unknown date.



"Wintek revealed that it is currently working with Apple to develop some new products, but it said it does not know what applications the new products are for," the DigiTimes report said. "Wintek added that no shipment schedule has been worked out yet, but shipments are likely to begin in the second half of the year."



In its original report, which isn't accessible on the web, the Commercial Times reportedly went on to say that Quanta Computer will be the company responsible for assembling the new computers.



The move would appear contrary to comments on the netbook segment from members of Apple's top brass, who in recent discussions with Wall Street analysts have downplayed the market for the stripped down, sub-$600 notebooks.



"As we look at the netbook category, that's a nascent category," Apple chief executive Steve Jobs said last fall. "As best as we can tell, there's not a lot of them being sold."



More recent criticisms of the segment came this past January from Apple chief operating office Tim Cook, who noted that netbooks are "principally based on hardware that's much less powerful than we think customers want, software technology that is not good, cramped keyboards, small displays."



"We don't think people will be pleased with those products," he added. "It's a category we watch, we've got some ideas here, but right now we think the products are inferior and will not provide an experience to customers they're happy with."



Unlike DigiTimes, which has proven to be been hit or miss with its forward-looking Apple reports, the Commercial Times has generally been more reliable with its calls on the company. That said, a cursory review reveals that its report Monday on netbooks would represent the newspaper's boldest prediction in some time.



Assuming the report carries some truth, there's also the possibility the displays could be headed for Apple's much rumored Newton/Web tablet of similar proportions, and not a traditional netbook.
«1345678

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 141
    successsuccess Posts: 1,039member
    about frikkin' time.



    oh did I mention I was first?
  • Reply 2 of 141
    minderbinderminderbinder Posts: 1,703member
    Agreed, it's about time, it's what the market is asking for.



    I never bought into the whole excuse that apple would never make a cheap underpowered machine...particularly when they were saying that at the same time they were selling the mini with specs worse than some netbooks (and for a considerably higher price).
  • Reply 3 of 141
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,406member
    Good news if true for me, my iBook which is used for reading is getting pretty old.
  • Reply 4 of 141
    bigebige Posts: 12member
    Okay, I'll be the first to call BS on this. I simply don't buy into hype that Apple is going to get into the netbook arena. While they may be selling briskly, they provide little in margin to their manufacturers, and they also provide a poor performance experience. With all the netbook fanbois claims of "browsing, email, yada yada" as being essential ingredients for a netbook -- well, I can do that with an iPhone already. And, there simply isn't enough space on a netbook keyboard for a trackpad large enough for complex gestures, which is a key Apple differentiator and signature capability.



    I do think that Apple will come out with what is essentially a larger version of the iTouch, primarily gesture driven (external keyboard optional) as that would (a) differentiated from the rest of the market, (b) portable like a netbook, (c) heavily leverage MultiTouch, and (d) would allow Jon a chance to stretch his legs with some really radical designs.
  • Reply 5 of 141
    markbmarkb Posts: 153member
    Smells Fishy. I just dont see much room between the $600 effective price of the iPhone and the $999 of the pretty full featured Mac Book. Would also complicate their product line and marketing greatly.
  • Reply 6 of 141
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,995member
    Its gonna be the most expensive netbook available if they do in fact build one. So I hope nobody expects this to be cheap. I also bet there will be some kind of catch to it which will steer some hopefuls away from it.
  • Reply 7 of 141
    wheelhotwheelhot Posts: 465member
    Considering Apple mentioned that they do not know how to make a cheap notebook that is not a piece of junk I guess this netbook will start at $1000+



    But I don't think they will go in cause Apple want to push the iPhone and iPod Touch as the future of mobile computing. Look at how capable the iPhone already and over the years, if the community grows towards the better, expect better apps
  • Reply 8 of 141
    breezebreeze Posts: 96member
    Apple, as always, is advancing to the beat of it's own drummer.



    Products don't get developed overnight nor do they arrive without years of development in many cases. Just because pea brain, loud mouth, know it alls (NOT) speculate guess and think they dictate or influence Apple's evolution, or know what Apple's got planned, doesn't necessarily mean squat.



    It should be obvious by now "that loose lips sink ships" and that discreetness is exclusive of pundits. Apple would be mad to discuss openly it's intentions and plans...Did anyone really think that they could predict , guess or second guess Apple?



    A Netbook/Tablet type device was only a matter of when, not if....
  • Reply 9 of 141
    wingswings Posts: 261member
    I wouldn't be surprised if this thing is, or can be, a cell phone, and with video-conferencing built in. That would certainly put some distance between it and the rest of the pack.
  • Reply 10 of 141
    trevctrevc Posts: 77member
    I'd be one of the first to buy a netbook from Apple to 'compliment' my iMac, NOT replace it.



    I can't justify a MacBook Pro or Macbook but a simple surfer/emailer , etc. that sits on my coffee table and goes with me on trips is Totally justifyable.



    But... with a MacMini priced starting at $729 (Canadian) sans screen or keyboard probably means that we're looking at least Macbook pricing?



    I'm not sure Apple will pull this off. It's kind of like the Cube. Perfect in so many ways, but priced wrong in so many ways. Kinda like the Mini in my opinion.



    Hopefully they're right and hopefully it's positioned correctly. We already have a MacBook Air, I think we need a MacBook Air Mini Mini (Mini form factor, mini(ier) price).



    Can't wait.
  • Reply 11 of 141
    wilcowilco Posts: 985member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by success View Post




    oh did I mention I was first?



    What an ironic screen name you have.



  • Reply 12 of 141
    tim stim s Posts: 1member
    What about the Google-Apple relationship? There have been rumors that Google may be coming out with a "free" web device powered by Linux (and paid-for by advertising).



    But what if Apple provided a stripped-down OS X for it that just happens to interface with Macs better than a Linux-powered device could?



    Could this be a Google-Apple mobile appliance?
  • Reply 13 of 141
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    I am already sensing that many are expecting too much for too little, resulting in inevitable disappointment.



    If you want OS X on a netbook I think a Hackintosh is the way to go. Just stay away from Acer Apsire Ones as their are no drivers from the built0in WiFi cards so you'll have to go external or replace the internal card.
  • Reply 14 of 141
    wilcowilco Posts: 985member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by breeze View Post


    ...know it alls (NOT)



    I saw what you did there!



    You made everyone think that you thought these people were "know it alls," but then at the last moment, you added "NOT" -- throwing all of us for a loop!



    Well done!
  • Reply 15 of 141
    jpellinojpellino Posts: 618member
    "As we look at the netbook category, that's a nascent category," Apple chief executive Steve Jobs said last fall. "As best as we can tell, there's not a lot of them being sold." ...from Tim Cook, who noted that netbooks are "principally based on hardware that's much less powerful than we think customers want, software technology that is not good, cramped keyboards, small displays." "We don't think people will be pleased with those products," he added. "It's a category we watch, we've got some ideas here, but right now we think the products are inferior and will not provide an experience to customers they're happy with."



    Which translates to prime meat for Apple. This is where the laptop market was before the PowerBooks, where the MP3 Player market was before the iPod, and where the smartphone market was before the iPhone.



    Everyone is reading this as "...not for us" - I read this as "just watch..."
  • Reply 16 of 141
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Tablet- iPod Touch Super-sized.

    We would have had an 11" laptop/netbook by now.
  • Reply 17 of 141
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Tim S View Post


    What about the Google-Apple relationship? There have been rumors that Google may be coming out with a "free" web device powered by Linux (and paid-for by advertising).



    But what if Apple provided a stripped-down OS X for it that just happens to interface with Macs better than a Linux-powered device could?



    Could this be a Google-Apple mobile appliance?



    If such a device is free, then it doesn't benefit Apple, unless Google is paying them handsomely, but since such a device needs to be as cheap as possible to keep costs down I would wager that they are not working on such a project. That is one part of their relationship where they are at ends.



    Stripping down OS X for a netbook is pretty easy. It is mainly apps and drivers that need to removed. The core OS is already efficient enough to run on Atom-based machines nicely. I think Apple is working on something, but think people are expecting the wrong thing.
  • Reply 18 of 141
    sc54321sc54321 Posts: 54member
    MacTouch Mini
  • Reply 19 of 141
    imatimat Posts: 169member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jpellino View Post


    "As we look at the netbook category, that's a nascent category," Apple chief executive Steve Jobs said last fall. "As best as we can tell, there's not a lot of them being sold." ...from Tim Cook, who noted that netbooks are "principally based on hardware that's much less powerful than we think customers want, software technology that is not good, cramped keyboards, small displays." "We don't think people will be pleased with those products," he added. "It's a category we watch, we've got some ideas here, but right now we think the products are inferior and will not provide an experience to customers they're happy with."



    Which translates to prime meat for Apple. This is where the laptop market was before the PowerBooks, where the MP3 Player market was before the iPod, and where the smartphone market was before the iPhone.



    Everyone is reading this as "...not for us" - I read this as "just watch..."



    I fully agree with the analysis you just made.Apple is just paving the road for "their interpretation" of the netbook concept. In my opinion it is going to be something along the lines of the iPhone combining:

    Tablet (touch screen and interface) which they also said they would never do (btw this whole neetbok frenzy reminds me of the tablet one which didn't last and didn't bring any relevant changes to the market)

    iPhone (internet navigation with cell phone carrier and compact form factor)

    New device (taking clues from the new battery technologies)
  • Reply 20 of 141
    applepiapplepi Posts: 365member
    Seems likely to me that Apple is building a tablet. I would think this is where the netbook market is heading. Apple will probably put a custom processor in this thing. Probably made by that company they acquired. Won't be as fast as a core2duo but also not as slow as an iphone chip. Probably a 10" touchscreen with a version of mac os X on it. Designed to compete with netbooks and the kindle. Whether it will support stylus input is something I'm curious about. I hope it would. They do have that inkwell technology.
Sign In or Register to comment.