Wednesday, 31 December 2008

Expecting a tablet from Apple? Keep taking the pills.

In the Mac rumorsphere, there are some memes that, like stubborn stains, refuse to fade away. One such errant idea is that of a tablet computer from Apple. Over the past decade, it seems almost every commentator has at some point anticipated such a device, and yet, to date it has not materialised, and it's unlike that it ever will.

Steve Jobs has always seemed pretty smug about sitting out of the whole pen-based computing thing. On his return to Apple in 1997, killing the Newton (a stylus-based device) was one of his first executive decisions. And there seemed to be a degree of schadenfreude about his analysis of Bill Gate's failed Tablet PC concept. (Gates famously predicted that by 2006, the tablet "will be the most popular form of PC sold in America").

So, the rumor community, reluctantly giving up on the cherished notion of a Mac tablet, have moved on to speculating about the possibility of an enormous iPod touch instead. Apparently it's obvious that we want our electronics bigger, rather than smaller. We tire of being able to hold an iPod in one hand and sling it in our pockets, and would prefer something much larger and heavier, with a lower resolution screen, so that we can play iPod touch games on a device that they were not designed to run on, and are not really suited for.

Apple is, in all probability, working on a next generation iPod touch with different dimensions and weight - but they're doubtless thinking about how not make it thinner and lighter, not bigger and heavier!

G5 PowerBook next Tuesday, anyone?

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