Apple’s new i-thing

Everyone’s asking me about this new “thing” from Apple, so I thought I’d answer all of you at once. First of all, no one outside of a select few at Apple know anything about Apple’s not-yet-announced thing. We don’t know what it’s called, we don’t know what it looks like, we don’t know when it will be available, we don’t know what it will cost. And we don’t know what it will do. All we do know is that Apple sent out an invitation yesterday (I didn’t get one) and that Apple will show their “latest creation” on January 27th, 2010.

Here’s what the invitation looks like.

People are trying to find meaning in the colors, in the splashiness, etc. but all of it is guesswork. All of it.

My advice: wait until the 27th. Then we’ll all know. However… I do have some thoughts.

  1. If Apple does introduce a tablet-style computing device it will be far more than just an Apple version of Amazon’s Kindle book-reading device. FAR more.
  2. I would expect Apple to try to leverage the vast universe of iPhone apps, probably enabling you to run more than one app at a time on the tablet, to drag them around on the screen, and to resize them arbitrarily.
  3. We already have great Apple products for when we have a desk or a table to work from (iMac, MacBook), and we already have iPhones for those times when we’re on the go. There seems to be no need for something in between. You can bet that Apple has thought of this too. I expect Apple’s tablet to include something very cool, which you and I will want desperately– and it will not be available on any other device, including the iPhone. That will give you a reason to buy the tablet. My guesses: live video chatting, tablet to tablet– or streaming TV and movies. Or both.

Calendar synching with your Mac? Of course. Address book synching with your Mac? Double of course. Weather/stocks/maps/wireless– yes/yes/yes/yes. Something really incredible that I haven’t thought of? Almost certainly yes.

A couple of years ago, my friend Dave asked me what I thought Apple would introduce at MacWorld Expo. I told him I didn’t have any idea– but whatever it turned out to be, I wanted two of them. That’s how I feel about this January 27th Apple product intro. I can barely wait.


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