Wow, where to start?
At the beginning. A few days ago, when Apple posted the gauntlet-throwing “The first 30 years were just the beginning” sign on its home page, it effectively announced to the world: “This time, we have something special.”
And special indeed. Today’s announcements from Steve Jobs fulfill almost all the Mac enthusiasts’ dreams of the last two years or so. Finally, Apple has a living room media device and a portable computer that rivals the coolness of the iPod combined with the geeky joy of the old Newton.
My first thoughts are:
- Apple did an amazing job of keeping this secret and unleaked
- The iPhone screen looks incredible
- But with that bright screen, plus wifi, plus Bluetooth, the battery life can’t be good. Five hours of talk time, video & browsing; 16 hours music playback. These things are going to spend a lot of their lives plugged in
- Zune just looks pathetic now
- It runs OS X. What hacking and coding opportunities will present themselves?
- The Multi Touch UI is, at first sight, a work of genius. The pinch-and-drag method of zooming a photo just makes me grin with delight
- How is the syncing handled? All through iTunes? What about the contacts and stuff? Will there be a separate app to handle it?
- I really, really do not need one of these. But I so want one. And given that it won’t be available here in the UK until the end of this year, at least I have some time to save up some money to buy one
- What, no Leopard previews at all? Not even a shipping date? Perhaps the iPhone UI gives us some clues about new stuff we can expect to see in 10.5…
- Other things we didn’t see: any sign of iWork or iLife 07; updated Mac minis (Core 2 Duo); any mention of the long-suffering .Mac.
And aside from the products, there’s the corporate identity. Apple Computer is dead; long live Apple, Inc. If any of us had stopped drooling over iPhone mockups for long enough, we might have seen this one coming. Apple is no longer a computer company, it’s a media and consumer electronics company that also makes computers.
What a strange, strange 30 years lies in store for it.
More reports and analysis coming later…