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Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Today in Apple Hype

posted by on January 15 at 10:37 AM


Because I know Slog readers are a bunch of hype-hungry Apple fanboys and girls, following is a quick recap of the new products Apple announced at Macworld this morning. Aren’t you so excited!?!

Time Capsule - An Airport Extreme (wireless router) with a big internal hard drive, for backups using Leopard’s new Time Machine.
iPhone - SDK for third-party apps (still) coming in February. New software update coming today, featuring psuedo-GPS, web clips, rearrangeable home screen, and more. iPod Touch to get Mail, maps, and other iPhone features, making it precisely an iPhone without the phone. $20 upgrade.
iTunes - Movie Rentals. All major studios are on board, rentals to cost $2.99 - $3.99. Start watching within 30 days, watch for 24 hours. Launches today.
AppleTV Take 2 - No computer required. Rent/buy movies, music, TV shows, etc., directly from iTunes Store on your TV. HD movies also available, with Dolby 5.1 surround sound. Free software update for existing AppleTVs.
Macbook Air - “World’s Thinnest Laptop.” 0.76” thin, built in iSight camera, Core 2 Duo. Sports a multitouch trackpad (like an iPhone screen). No optical drive, Superdrive accessory for $99, and some kind of software to let you “borrow” another PC or Mac’s optical drive. 5 hour battery life. “Fits inside an envelope.” 64GB solid-state flash drive optional.

So which one are you so excited about the most?!?

RSS icon Comments


I feel about Apple exactly how I feel about "Click and Clack" on NPR: awesome fresh in the 80s and early 90s, old and tired now.

And hey, iPhone users: my PPC-6700 did everything your phone does, plus had access to Sprint's kick-ass EVDO high speed wireless network, two fucking years ago.

Posted by Big Sven | January 15, 2008 10:56 AM

I'll be most excited when netflix has an online viewing app for macs. Right now its only for PCs.

Posted by yearning | January 15, 2008 10:57 AM

The macbook air looks cool but a computer without a disc drive is baffling in this day and age. I have the previous macbook and it's awesome.

Posted by ghostlawns | January 15, 2008 11:05 AM

That laptop is pretty freaking cool. I won't be buying one though... Maybe the AppleTV. I second the wish for Netflix viewing on Macs.

Posted by gillsans | January 15, 2008 11:06 AM

The battery is INTERNAL. that sucks. 5 hours and no swapping out.

Posted by watcher | January 15, 2008 11:09 AM

Sadly, no 3G iPhone.

Posted by Jonathan Golob | January 15, 2008 11:10 AM

Stores are lame. Time Capsule is good idea but not revolutionary. iPod Touch improvements make it a decent little not-quite-computer device, great idea. Also helps drive more to iPhone.

The real deale is the MacBook Air. That's some schniz there. That's what I'm getting when the Powerbook dies...

Posted by NaFun | January 15, 2008 11:10 AM

Yeah, I'm salivating puddles right now (okay, maybe that's melting snow and ice) over the impending arrival of my Moto Q9. Except for the touch-screen, it'll kick the iPhone's ass into last weekend.

Posted by COMTE | January 15, 2008 11:11 AM

I'm excited about the SLOG linking the video from Mad TV with the fake Feist song about how I feel about Apple products ....

Oh, wait, you forgot to link it?

Posted by Will in Seattle | January 15, 2008 11:18 AM

I'll take the kid with the head-logo thanks.

Posted by observer | January 15, 2008 11:19 AM

the problem with time capsule is that itll cost 2 to 3 times as much as the sum of its parts

Posted by Bellevue Ave | January 15, 2008 11:19 AM

yo, ghost@3: It comes with a conventional, spinning hard drive. The Flash drive option is an extra thousand bucks.

The only thing new today is the MacBook Air. They will sell untold skillions of them. My only real reservations are 1) the physical resiliency of something THAT heavy and that thin. 2) you need a dongle for good ol' ethernet 3) super low-rise, low-travel keys. Might be OK.

Ditto to Big Sven@1: My 2-year-old Nokia E70 kicks the iPhone's ass. But it is a shitty chick magnet.

Posted by Karlheinz Arschbomber | January 15, 2008 11:21 AM

As a longtime 12-inch powerbook owner, I really like the new macbook air. Would have killed them to toss in a firewire port though?

Can't wait to update my iPhone...

Posted by Super Jesse | January 15, 2008 11:22 AM

iPhone update. Duh.

Posted by Mr. Poe | January 15, 2008 11:25 AM

hey neat more hamstrung shiny apple products...hooray!

Posted by laterite | January 15, 2008 11:27 AM

Time Capsule is making me drool a little, I admit it. Really, it's the wireless hard-drive aspect of it, as I rely on my external hard drive and managed to give myself a big bruise on my thigh tripping over it the other day. Having one without that possibility would be nice. The Air is cool but I just got a new computer in the summer, so it's less relevant.

Posted by Abby | January 15, 2008 11:30 AM

AAPL -10.15. Someone's not impressed.

Posted by Tiffany | January 15, 2008 11:36 AM

"Airport Extreme (wireless router) with a big internal hard drive, for backups using Leopard’s new Time Machine."

I have a friend that does tech support for Apple. This scenario makes me feel very, very sorry for him.

Posted by Dougsf | January 15, 2008 11:51 AM

Big Sven, your comment misses the point. No one ever said the iPhone does things that no other mobile phone has ever done before, but it's ludicrous to argue that it's not a revolutionary device that significantly changed what people expect from a mobile phone in terms of design, usability, and features. It's just silly. No, it's not 100% brand new. But yes, it's quite different than anything that came before it.

Posted by Anthony Hecht | January 15, 2008 12:03 PM

Comte: Ph33r the MotoQ-anything.

My Q phone's battery life won't last a day. I'm counting down the days until I can get something else and back over this one with my car.

Posted by NapoleonXIV | January 15, 2008 12:03 PM

@12. Your phone's a magnet for shitty chicks?

Posted by MoTown | January 15, 2008 12:19 PM

I agree, other than the MacBook Air, not much there this year. and the lack of firewire being bad.

Posted by Will in Seattle | January 15, 2008 12:26 PM

@12 i wasn't referring to the hard drive but a cd/dvd drive.

Posted by ghostlawns | January 15, 2008 12:28 PM

It's nothing earth-shattering for me, but I'm impressed with the overall implementation of Apple's vision for consumer ease of use. The Time capsule is a good idea -- and the prices don't seem to be out of line for an Airport plus external hard drive. (Price a 1 terabyte drive some time and you'll see what I mean.) I also appreciate the additions for the iPod touch. I have long been interested in a small handheld computer for traveling, and although I love my MacBook I would love to see what the iPT can do.

Posted by Sachi Wilson | January 15, 2008 12:29 PM

I'm with observer @10, the kid with the logo on his head has a totally nice skull.

Posted by katy | January 15, 2008 12:32 PM


Yeah, the relatively short battery life reported in the older models had me feeling just a teensy bit of reluctance. But, AT&T & Motorola are including an extended-life battery with the new 9h, which some reviewers have indicated actually improves hand-feel, so it's all good.

Posted by COMTE | January 15, 2008 12:53 PM

honestly, the thing that excites me most is that netflix felt threatened by apple, and so dropped their limits on how much you can watch things via online streaming per month. unlimited online access! huzzah!!

Posted by arduous | January 15, 2008 2:09 PM

@13 & 22 Crimethought! from Apple's web site; "all the ports you really need, a" ['a' as in singular] "USB 2.0 port". If they say you don't need Firewire, then you don't.

Am I the only one who finds putting a camera in all their computers a bit ironic in light of the first Mac television ad? Yes, I'm strange, and that was a rhetorical question, I know I'm the only one, I also know that the camera active light is hardwired to the camera and there is no way the camera can be used without you knowing about it. But then I probably know too much for my own good "Ignorance is Strength"

And I thought my $600 Compaq was plusungood because it only had 2 USB ports and a lame "Xpress" slot instead of PCMCIA, but I unbellyfeel touch pad and use a mouse so one USB port is always in use, I guess if I were coordinated enough to use a touch pad, then I could be goodthinkfull.

What I don't understand is, why, when Apple® changed their name from Apple Computers® they didn't buy Toys 'r Us®. With the competition from Wallmart I don't think Toys 'r Us is doing so well, so the price would probably be reasonable.
Posted by Epimetheus | January 15, 2008 2:11 PM

Anthony Hecht@19-

No one ever said the iPhone does things that no other mobile phone has ever done before, but it's ludicrous to argue that it's not a revolutionary device that significantly changed what people expect from a mobile phone in terms of design, usability, and features.

First off, way to add a totally subjective marketing concept ("design") in with actual quantifiable characteristics ("usability, and features.")

The iPhone does *nothing* the PPC-6700 didn't do in Dec '05. And in Dec '05 the PPC-6700 could be used on an actual high speed network (EVDO), which the iPhone (unless you hack it) can't do even today.

But feel free to consider the "design" of the iPhone better than the PPC-6700. That and $2.75 will buy you a nice cafe latte.

Posted by Big Sven | January 15, 2008 2:34 PM

sven, the 6700 is hella bulky. i use a 6800 but without the ability for extended battery, it is always plugged in. lucky im always by a plug in.

Posted by Bellevue Ave | January 15, 2008 3:08 PM

Design != appearance. Design is (more importantly) how things work, not just how things look, and is certainly more than a marketing concept. But you're right, my viewpoint is subjective, as is yours.

Posted by Anthony Hecht | January 15, 2008 3:19 PM

I believe the press release said the batt life of the laptop is "up to five hours," which usually means two. And no provision for carrying a spare?

Posted by Toe Tag | January 15, 2008 4:33 PM


Big Sven,

Features, features features do not help if they're a pain to use...that's one thing that most of the world doesn't understand, so they buy some feature laden crap and don't realize they're not very easy to implement.
the iPhone might not do anything the 6700 couldn't do (maybe even less, right now) but what it does, it does very well. Perhaps why that's why it had 20% of the smart phone market after being out only 3 months.

Hey, you can do anything on a mac with a windows machine, you can just usually do it faster and easier with the mac. Life is short. I'll pay for the better design every time (although these days the price isn't as much of an issue), and yeah, I write software for macs and windows, and try to make well designed software for both...there are plenty of people who appreciate the better designs, and many, sadly, who will never "get" it.


Posted by dave | January 15, 2008 7:30 PM

@35: I "got" it a long time ago, and then Apple lost it, and never got it back. The interface choices Apple has made have been for no other reason than to look nice. I'm actually more satisfied and productive using Vista than Leopard, so my Mac almost exclusively boots into Windows.

As for the Macbook Air: I have no idea who its made for. The MacBook doesn't have any major mobility issues as it is, so essentially stripping a Macbook down to a processor, RAM and onboard GPU and charging $800 for the luxury of having it crammed in an aluminum case doesn't seem like logical product progression. I'm not in the habit of interoffice mailing my laptop in a sheath of paper either. I'd have liked to see a Macbook Pro refresh that was thinner and better looking, but if that happened I'd have to start a snowplow business in hell.

Posted by Tdub | January 15, 2008 11:09 PM

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