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MacRumors
Nov 26, 2003, 02:47 PM
Robert Cringely (http://www.pbs.org/cringely/pulpit/pulpit20031127.html) provides some educated speculation on the possibility of an Apple Tablet.

Beyond the usual rumors (http://www.macrumors.com/pages/2003/02/20030221004455.shtml) of an Apple Tablet, Cringely notes an upcoming technology that may provide tablets the "killer app" they need to drive their adoption.

The upcoming IEEE standard known as 802.15.3 -- "a high data rate Personal Area Network with a range of about 10 meters". This new technology will allow high quality video transmission wirelessly between devices. Early chips based on the new technology are reportedly scheduled to be released in January, a year ahead of the actual standardization... but Cringely believes that Apple will adopt them at this early stage.

Watch TV in your bathroom, access your audio and video collection from anywhere in the house, control your big screen TV and route video to it from your desktop or the Internet. Take a dozen movies and your entire music collection with you on a trip. Strap the gizmo to the back of your car headrest and entertain the kids. Grab e-mail from a passing WiFi hotspot. Surf the web. Play video games. It will still cost too much, but a million early adopters won't care.

whfsdude
Nov 26, 2003, 02:57 PM
802.15.3 has speeds of 11, 22, 33, 44, & 55 Mbps. For TV you need only need 8mbits (no HDTV but normal tv.)

Yeah anyway I hope apple doesn't do this, it seems very useless.

Someone needs to create a standard that all networking devices will use in the house. Like your lights would they have a built in web server? Your TV? Would you really want to control this with a big tablet or would you like to control it from your computers/PDA?

I know this, if I was able to control all those things with a PDA I would own a PDA.

But my point is it would be useless for apple to make a tablet, at this point. Apple needs to get non computer devices online and to use standards so that they can use practically any IEEE standard. :-/ Then they can start making devices that interact.

DaveGee
Nov 26, 2003, 02:57 PM
Yea... I've been waiting for it FOREVER and I have a feeling that long after Jan has come and gone... I'll still be waiting for it... :(

But I can still dream right? :p

..edit..

As for size...

PDA screen .. too small!
Phone screen .. way too small!

The device I want should be able to give me an 'iTunes' experience for choosing my music selection (and or buying from iTMS) and it wouldn't hurt if it could also give me a full (or close to full) web browsing experience...

Dave

cubist
Nov 26, 2003, 03:03 PM
Neat - Ultra-Wide-Band networking - it sounds like a great technology, and maybe the standards gurus will go with the working solution for once. But the evidence for any connection with Apple is pure speculation.

LimeMac
Nov 26, 2003, 03:05 PM
It's gotta be better than the windoze tabs!
I want one!

x86isslow
Nov 26, 2003, 03:10 PM
i've never seen a tablet outside of the ads.. but a lot of people on this site have bashed them in other posts. could someone tell me what is so bad about tablets?

anyways, i seriously doubt that apple will release a tabletTV right now.

Macmaniac
Nov 26, 2003, 03:17 PM
Anything new from Apple is always good!!
Lets hope something is true!

Makosuke
Nov 26, 2003, 03:24 PM
Hmm... sounds like a questionable idea to me, but I've gotta admit if you're going to do video, this would be the way to do it. No squinting at a microscopic screen (if you want to watch a movie on your cellphone like... what is it, Sony? thinks you want to, more power to you and the blindness you'll develop), less battery issues, no ugly overlap with the iPod, no need to try to make the iPod a video device.

Just a nice, say, 12" portable TV that happens to be able to recieve streaming video, store a movie or ten for walking around, and double as a web browser.

Might not work, and I don't know if I'd take the risk at this stage, but if Apple tries it, it'll be cool. Hell, why not--make the PC guys squirm again.

fuge
Nov 26, 2003, 03:44 PM
the last line of the article made me laugh.

Dreadnought
Nov 26, 2003, 03:47 PM
Cool! I definately want one! Wouldn't it be cool to have an Imac that sits on your desk and when you want to work on the couch, the only thing you take with you is the removable screen of the Imac!

Hawthorne
Nov 26, 2003, 03:50 PM
Originally posted by fuge
the last line of the article made me laugh.

If not them, then a year after that, Michael Dell will.:D

Seriously, between this, the rumors of a $749 device, and a snow-white enclosure 10 inches by 6 by 1 (old rumor, fuzzy memory), and the fact that Apple pioneered 802.11b and embraced 802.11g before that was a standard, this makes all kinds of sense.

Now team it up with an iPod to use as a shuttle. Imagine syncing up your movies, music, files, contact information and meetings on the iPod, and then plugging that iPod into a recessed Dock connector on the Apple tablet. You'd watch movies and the iTunes Visualizer on the Tablet, make changes to your schedule or phone numbers, or do lightweight computing, then either sync via this "Super Bluetooth" or shuttle the iPod back to your Mac.

*drool*

(edited typos)

ennerseed
Nov 26, 2003, 04:03 PM
Originally posted by Hawthorne
Now team it up with an iPod to use as a shuttle. Imagine syncing up your movies, music, files, contact information and meetings on the iPod, and then plugging that iPod into a recessed Dock connector on the Apple tablet.

That, along with the rest of the stuff this guy is talking about, is exactly what I have been thinking/dreamin. And what the new smooth surface/shape of the iPod seems to be very good for.

jethroted
Nov 26, 2003, 04:07 PM
This is exactly the kind of device I am waiting for! I have wanted something like this for a couple of years now. I even made a mock up of what I was thinking it would look like.

jethroted
Nov 26, 2003, 04:08 PM
Here is what the one I put together looked like.

jimthorn
Nov 26, 2003, 04:18 PM
A less risky way to enter this market would be for Apple to release something like the current iMac, but with a removeable screen. That way, you'd get a desktop computer, and you'd also get a tablet computer wirelessly connected to a headless server. Granted, this would have to start out at the price of two computers, plus all that nifty new wireless gear (at least $2999), putting it right out of the consumer market. But hey, it'd be cool.

wHo_tHe
Nov 26, 2003, 04:32 PM
Sounds like great technology we'd all love to have, of course.

But the article seems to suggest Apple is backing DS-CDMA, the "underdog" technology competing for the 802.15.3 standard, whose inventor has just been bought by Motorola.

I had thought Apple and Motorola's business relationship had soured intensely after the long delays -- and ultimately, Motorola's outright failure -- in ramping up G4 speed.

This could mean that Apple is once again placing a key technology in the hands of a supplier who has failed them before. I think we can all agree the (lack of) speed of the G4 was hurting Apple business before the 970 arrived.

On the other hand, of course, the interference problems with Multiband OFDM sound like they could cripple the technology to the equivalent of little more than a 6-foot cat 5 cable, something my junk drawer has more than enough of right now, thank you very much.

Bottom line, some sort of wide-band wireless technology will exist in the next couple of years and someone -- perhaps Apple -- will be poised enough and deliver the right mix of computing and entertainment to have their product shape the marketplace.

dnedrow
Nov 26, 2003, 04:34 PM
The 802.15.3 standard purports to connect as many as 245 wireless fixed and portable devices at speeds to 55M bit/sec over distances to 100 meters.

sanford
Nov 26, 2003, 04:42 PM
I hate to paraphrase his Jobness, but again, tying computer and television/video together in a multimedia-PC-type arrangement -- be it tablet or full-blown PC -- is apparently not the direction Apple is going with the digital-hub strategy.

Apparently, Jobs just doesn't see the personal computer as the nexus of the home entertainment enivronment; rather, the glue between disparate portable digital devices -- cameras, music players, etc. Frankly, I tend to agree with him. I like my TV where it is: away from me.

Various third parties provide solutions for getting music from your Mac to stereo systems throughout your home. I do appreciate the flexibility the "iTunes/iPod experience" lends music listening; but I can't imagine myself tracking round the house watching movie playlists.

The only time I see the lack of TV/video integration in the Apple version of the digital hub as a possible impasse is when DVD-quality movie rentals go online as downloads. But then again, all you'd need is a third-party device for transferring the data over a network.

kerryb
Nov 26, 2003, 05:03 PM
I've noticed some people (mostly under 30) have a really hard time not being connected to some electronic device. I watched, or had to listen to a young woman's cell phone conversation while waiting in line at a music/DVD store which like most retail places had music playing. Two seconds after finishing the phone call she hurriedly groped for earplugs for an iPod of similar device. Are we raising a generation that has to be constantly entertained by an electronic device and cannot just experience a moment in time? This new device idea sounds like another way of making people think they are in their living rooms instead of in public. Why live in the real world when you can stare at a little screen and not count the cows when driving through the country side.

hobbes3113
Nov 26, 2003, 05:08 PM
Please not another tablet rumor. As nice as it would be to have one, these rumors are tiring...

DHagan4755
Nov 26, 2003, 05:41 PM
Steve Jobs did say at a recent analyst's meeting that the nexus of the personal computer and the television is not a direction in which Apple is heading.

Q: TVs and Computers?
Jobs: "This is not a new thing. People have been working on this for years. Apple was the first company to ever do this. And there is a small audience that likes this. It is not a large audience" .... "People want 42" and above plasma screens on their wall and they want to view them from far away with their friends or family" "And generally, what they want to view on their television has to do with turning their minds off" .... "Now how do I want to work on my computer? Do I want to work on it 6 feet, 8 feet, 10 feet away with my buddies? No, I want to work on it a few inches away by myself. It's a very very very different experience. We've always believed that this convergence between the computer and the television wasn't going to work. We do believe that there's room for people watching some television on a computer now and then. And we do believe there's a vast opportunity to make televisions more intelligent and home entertainment systems more intelligent and easier to use. But that does not mean that computers and televisions are coming together. And, um, the media center -- basically every young person already has their stereo on your computer - that has come together." .... "but television's another animal. And we don't see it happening in a mass way"


You can listen here:
http://www.apple.com/quicktime/qtv/analystmeeting03/

-or-
MacRumors thread about the analyst's meeting (http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=46254)

xTerryMon
Nov 26, 2003, 05:53 PM
If Jobs was going to release anything in tablet form; think big.
He is not going after the consumer home market but business.
Id Apple was to develop a tablet that could "become" what ever application you programed for it, THAT would be the next wave.
At home, email, videos in the car & web surfing in your lap etc.
The real biz would be the same device, but programed for other applications like hospitals,warehousing, military, UPS delivery guys. My money says that Jobs is working under cover with the corps out there with say Oracles' help for killer applications on a multi-purpose tablet for personal-business-corporate usage.

thedbp
Nov 26, 2003, 06:02 PM
Apple could have released a tablet that would do this LOOOOONG ago. Hardware the wireless standards are not the issue.

Its the software, stupid!

Doing all these things can be easy for a techie. But how do you make it simple for Joe Sixpack or his wife to watch TV on a tablet when the TV wasn't designed with this in mind at all? The tablet would have to have some pretty killer, easy-as-hell software to get it all connected, communicating, and keep it that way, through computer restards, TV turn-offs, etc.

As of right now, I can watch live TV in the bathroom via an iBook, my wireless network, El Gato's EyeTV, and CyTV, a server-client solution that pumps the EyeTV data from one computer over a LAN (wired or wireless) and uses VLC to play back the stream. Plus you can save the stream locally or on the computer the stream originated from. This solution works great - but it is a combination of multiple hardware/software devices.

Its not getting the hardware or network working. All the tech they need to do this is already here. The problem is finding the correct implementation.

SuperChuck
Nov 26, 2003, 06:09 PM
When Jobs repeatedly says something, he usually means it. I think everyone else in the world agrees that the one-button mouse is ready for extinction, but Jobs has stood his ground and lost a lot of potential customers for it. As mentioned in the article, he has repeatedly said that a computer without a keyboard is not a good idea.

On this one, I completely agree. As a designer, I love the idea of writing on my screen...just as long as I don't HAVE to write on my screen to get anything done. The keyboard allows me to write this message far faster than I could by "writing" it by hand. And for those who want more than one button on their mouse - imagine a whole computer with one button: the power switch.

Since we know how true Mr. Jobs is to his word, I think the tablet may be the screen of a new generation of powerbooks. All the convenience of a portable tablet, all the joys of doodling on the screen, and all without the nightmare of trying to multitask with a stylus (the NO button mouse).

sanford
Nov 26, 2003, 06:12 PM
Originally posted by kerryb
Are we raising a generation that has to be constantly entertained by an electronic device and cannot just experience a moment in time? This new device idea sounds like another way of making people think they are in their living rooms instead of in public. Why live in the real world when you can stare at a little screen and not count the cows when driving through the country side.

I would agree with you on all but the point about the iPod. I rarely use my mobile phone -- about 20 minutes a month, intentionally leaving it at home so that I can't be reached sometimes -- I watch few television programs. I do play video games at home; but I spend most of my time writing, at the same time listening to music, or reading. In the car -- a "necessity" where I live -- I listen to music via my iPod. We live in a crowded, busy and cacophonous urban area; the iPod gives me the option of tuning out automobile horns, shopping market squabbles, and Linkin Park or whatever else the local record store DJ is spinning that I'm just not in the mood for at that moment. My iPod has in its way become "counting the cows", if you will.

I am 35, however, so I don't really meet the constant-stimulation demographic your proposed.

sanford
Nov 26, 2003, 06:19 PM
Originally posted by SuperChuck
I think everyone else in the world agrees that the one-button mouse is ready for extinction, but Jobs has stood his ground and lost a lot of potential customers for it.

Come now, you really think that a goodly portion of potential Mac buyers have been *that* put off by the one-button mouse? Granted, even those who didn't have a sales person handy to suggest a third-party two-button mouse. I can't imagine that one or two buttons on the mouse has broken any deals.

As for me, I *like* the one-button mouse. Perhaps I'm not normal. Yes, rather, I'm sure I'm strange; but I remain enamored of the point-and-click paradigm; not the point-and-left-click-or-right-click model when some tasks *require* a right button. The control key modifier suffices for me should I choose to use it; if not, the same features are available to me through other interface elements.

SuperChuck
Nov 26, 2003, 06:27 PM
Originally posted by sanford
Come now, you really think that a goodly portion of potential Mac buyers have been *that* put off by the one-button mouse? Granted, even those who didn't have a sales person handy to suggest a third-party two-button mouse. I can't imagine that one or two buttons on the mouse has broken any deals.


Sorry. I didn't mean to suggest that Apple has lost computer buyers...just mouse buyers. I was primarily referring to the new wireless mouse that deservedly received wails of disapproval on the MacRumors forum.

TomSmithMacEd
Nov 26, 2003, 06:28 PM
I would love to see this, anything new from Apple is always good. I don't think the possibility of it happening isn't too great, but who knows. Jobs usually has a trick up his sleve.

mrsebastian
Nov 26, 2003, 06:32 PM
why the hell do i want a tablet to walk around my house with and control everything from my dish washer to the volume on my tv?! steve said it himself in some interview that certain things are better left as components. the complete home entertainment center run by your mac tablet, that will allow you no less than remotely flush the downstairs toilet is stupid! yeah i said it. consolodating your remotes with a sweet universal remote is one thing, but people get way to giddy about this all in one stuff. i don't wanna surf the web on my tv, because i'll do that on my laptop while i'm watching tv.

as for the last post about the one-button mouse thing (don't get me started), i would never consider not buying a mac because of that. my whole argument is apple could have made more money by offering me a two-button, scroll wheel, and bluetooth mouse that i ended up buying from m$.

the_mole1314
Nov 26, 2003, 07:18 PM
I doubt that an Apple Tablet, in some form that it might come it, will ever use streaming wireless video, I also doubt that the TV will be controlled via the Apple Tablet. Remeber Job's position on the use of technology for technology's sake? He wants to watch West Wing, not turn on the PC, configure the PC, turn on anything else, then watch the West Wing.

gerardrj
Nov 26, 2003, 08:18 PM
Steve has never (to my knowledge) lied about Apple's development projects. If he doens't want to talk about something he says he won't(can't) talk about it. If he does say something about a topic related to development, his word is law.

Steve has outright stated that Apple will not be developing:

1. Cell phones: There's nothing Apple can bring to the table that would be a compelling technological or value proposition to the consumer. Apple would rather let the phone makers make good phones, and then write OS software and apps that work with all the features in those phones (iSync, etc).

2. Tablet PCs: consumer data shows that there's no demand for these devices. The only reason they are in the market place is because Bill Gates was enamoured with them and coerced some manufacturers in to building a few models. Sales data flesh this out, sales are pitiful.

3. Personal Video Player: consumers aren't demanding this. The experience of a feature film on a small 3" screen would be unfulfilling and not worth the effort of producing. Again, sales figures of such units seem to bear this out: people aren't looking for video in their pocket. Steve's mentioned that a video player that connects to a TV might be a possibility. (perhaps another add-on and software upgrade to the iPod??)

If anyone can point to ANY product that Steve downplayed or denied any action on that later appeared in the Apple line-up, please let us know. I Think Cringley is just way off base here with this prediction of an Apple tablet in light of Steve's comments.

TomSmithMacEd
Nov 26, 2003, 08:23 PM
What new products are there out there? I mean it will be tough to come up with something new that people want.

He did have a credible source saying that the company who makes Apple laptops having been designing these for months.

ITR 81
Nov 26, 2003, 09:25 PM
Ok..listen folks $749..equals the price of the Apple Video iPod which has been talked alot about on Tech Tv recently.

Also if you think the price is too high the sony video player/mp3 player is $750 in Japan right now.

Apple will not do this tablet thing because so far MS and PC makers have made a bust selling it to reg. customers. The only folks that use this is businesses that use listing like tablets or something similar to what UPS uses.

This is not a tablet but the new Apple Video player which has been talked about ever since information leaked.

the_mole1314
Nov 26, 2003, 09:25 PM
Saying Tablet PCs have no market value is rediiculous. Sure, right now there is none, but that was the same with the MP3 market. It was a niche market, now it's huge.

Right now, the tablet PC market is small, if there is any. Mabey a few doctor's offices here and there, but there is a demand for a notebook like computer, not a tablet PC, but something else.

sanford
Nov 26, 2003, 09:26 PM
Originally posted by gerardrj
3. Personal Video Player: consumers aren't demanding this. The experience of a feature film on a small 3" screen would be unfulfilling and not worth the effort of producing. Again, sales figures of such units seem to bear this out: people aren't looking for video in their pocket. Steve's mentioned that a video player that connects to a TV might be a possibility. (perhaps another add-on and software upgrade to the iPod??)


And really, unless you just *have* to fit all that video in your pocket, my 15-inch Aluminum PowerBook is a pretty fabulous portable video player -- among other things. I have an iPod; not that I'd want to carry around the PowerBook just for music; but for video: I get the built-in screen *and* video-out if I need it.

Dippo
Nov 26, 2003, 09:26 PM
Originally posted by gerardrj

3. Personal Video Player: consumers aren't demanding this. The experience of a feature film on a small 3" screen would be unfulfilling and not worth the effort of producing. Again, sales figures of such units seem to bear this out: people aren't looking for video in their pocket. Steve's mentioned that a video player that connects to a TV might be a possibility. (perhaps another add-on and software upgrade to the iPod??)


I would love a Personal Video Player, but then I thought about how much trouble it will be to get video onto the player from various sources. It might not be worth the trouble in the end.

Of course I could always get a Portable DVD Player and just burn all of my video to DVD. (sounds like a good Christmas present to me)

xTerryMon
Nov 26, 2003, 09:29 PM
1. Cell phones: There's nothing Apple can bring to the table that would be a compelling technological or value proposition to the consumer.
3. Personal Video Player: consumers aren't demanding this.

1.Jobs has stated that cell phones are the future not PDAs. The iPhone that Apple has registered will no doubt be Jobs breakdown of telecomunications; a web based phone once he gets all his ducks in a row. THAT is compelling technology.

3. No one had a demand for a HD based portable MP3 player either; iPod.

sanford
Nov 26, 2003, 09:30 PM
Originally posted by Dippo
I would love a Personal Video Player, but then I thought about how much trouble it will be to get video onto the player from various sources. It might not be worth the trouble in the end.

I still think Jobs had a good point when he said he wasn't too sure how many people really wanted to watch movies on a 3" screen -- again, enter the PowerBook. And for those who are using it for video other than movies -- home video; marketing materials; what have you -- the niche starts to get pretty small.

soosy
Nov 26, 2003, 10:29 PM
I think Steve Jobs is right that most people don't want to watch TV on their computers. What people do want is TiVo. Maybe I'm cheap, but when I first heard of TiVo I just thought why can't my computer do that? It already has a hard drive and all the other components.

The other thing I want is to route my mp3 collection to multiple speakers throughout the house.

Not sure a tablet would help here, but these are the 2 aspects of a media center I would want.

Zach Abramson
Nov 26, 2003, 10:32 PM
Hello!
I remembered reading something that Jobs said in that one article when he reportedly said there would be no apple-branded PDA or cell phone. He said that he is interested in a small device that could be used to "drive the TV as the vehicle for presentation," whatever that means.

mproud
Nov 26, 2003, 10:51 PM
Not gonna happen.

Tablet industry is stagnant. Sales are poor. They're complaining to Microsoft.

Won't happen for QUITE some time.

pimentoLoaf
Nov 26, 2003, 11:24 PM
Oh, my. In Britain they'll no doubt soon pass a law requiring computer owners to have their systems licensed before use -- as they do for TV's.

ceriess
Nov 26, 2003, 11:27 PM
Personally, I'd love to have a little tablet to take into the can with me. Watch the game, or flip to internet mode and read the news. While sitting on the throne, I'd turn on and off the lights all over the house, simply because I could. Imagine the power. All from your toilet. Sign me up!

Sabenth
Nov 27, 2003, 12:00 AM
network standards

aiport
10/100
cat 5
wirelles
etc etc
more crap for the market biring it on...

Tablet we have laptops that are good enough
we have pdas that do the job already

we have mobile phones for christ sakes and in car entertainment centers do we need more crap

i say yes !!! not because i want one but because we need one just to rub in windows face ... big bill will not be happy if we get the pda verson of the iPod

u2mr2os2
Nov 27, 2003, 12:13 AM
People seem to have this strange idea that the only use of a tablet computer is to walk around the house all day controlling your appliances with taps of a stylus. Sure that's ridiculous. That's not what you'd use it for.

I can control my TV, VCR, DVD and amplifier from my PDA, but I don't do it. The amp's learning remote neatly does it all with real buttons, and I don't have to first turn it on, select the right program folder, launch the remote program, select the right device, then press a spot on the screen. I use my PDA for many other things it is suited for.

The use of a tablet computer will be similar. Sure, some will control lights with it (personally, I prefer my effortless control of lights with motion detectors), but most will just use it for Web surfing anywhere around the house and in a cafe. It's better than surfing on a PDA over Bluetooth or WiFi. You don't have to have the bulk of an open clamshell all the time like with a laptop. I especially like the ones with the twist screens so you can have the keyboard when you want. I saw one recently where the keyboard also detaches to shed even more bulk when you want.

I would love for Apple to make something like the iBook with a twist touch screen to go between tablet and notebook. I could just point and surf lying in bed or pound out code on the keyboard while enjoying the backyard.

I mostly agree with Steve Jobs that using the computer is a personal experience that is for when I'm in front of it. However, once it starts to serve up all my music, I want to be able to control that from a remote control and have the sound piped to anywhere in the house. I want for it to notify me when it has interesting stuff when I'm doing something else - I can't sit there in front of it all day to watch for a new mail indicator.

Aqua OS X
Nov 27, 2003, 12:49 AM
Jobs has repeatedly said that Apple has no plans to merge the computer with TV. People have tried to do this time and time again; however, nothing beats watching TV on the couch or in bed. Sitting on the can, at a desk, or outside with your computer/tv is f'n stupid.

fpnc
Nov 27, 2003, 01:06 AM
I have no inside information on this, but I'm going to predict that Apple is about ready to announce a significant and new A/V media-related consumer product. This could happen at this Friday's Apple Store special event or perhaps over the next week or two.

What I'm hoping for is a wireless media center that connects to your TV and/or stereo system. HP (and others) already have such products and I think Apple may be ready to introduce something similar using 802.11g (Airport Extreme). This product would allow you to use your Airport Extreme-Enabled Mac as a media server for your living room entertainment center. It would offer an iTunes-like interface to be displayed on your TV for music, an iPhoto-like interface for still images and slide shows, and (possibly) an interface to display streaming video from your Mac or from the internet.

The video option may be somewhat questionable, since that would require a reasonably powerful hardware/software decoder to reside in the media center itself. But let's face it, Airport Extreme should be able to handle MPEG2/4 streams without difficulty. Thus you could watch home video that resided on your Mac's hard drive (or CD-R or DVD-R) and eventually Apple might offer a video service similar to the iTunes Music Store. I think the video would be one way, from Mac to TV. It wouldn't allow you to record video from off-air or cable sources back to your Mac (i.e. it wouldn't act like a wireless TiVo unit).

I think this idea fits with Steve Jobs' obvious distain for so-called media center PCs. Since you'd be viewing and listening to the media on your big screen TV or stereo in the comfort of your living room.

The only questions might be how cheaply could such a device be made and do all current generation Macs have enough processing power to seamlessly run a media server while another (physical) user is actively using the same Macintosh?

Anyway, that's my prediction (or hope) and I think a product like this is more likely than a tablet Mac.

Lepton
Nov 27, 2003, 01:12 AM
Hardware: Aluminum skin. 8.5 by 5.5 inches (half the size of Letter size paper). 0.5 inches thick. 802.11g. One USB port. One 4-pin Firewire port. Two CF type II slots. One is filled with a required Microdrive such as IBM 1GB. Screen 8.5 inch diagonal. 600 by 900 pixel OLED. Touch sensitive. 4 hour battery life. Low power G3 500MHz. Single speaker. Audio I/O. Built-in microphone. No keyboard. No modem. No ethernet. No video ports. 2lbs. $2000.

Software: Mac OSX thin version, featuring standard OSX Inkwell, Speech I/O, QuickTime, AirPort, Apple Remote Access. QuickTime Player, TextEdit, iTunes, iMovie. , iChat. Runs most commercial OSX software.

Uses: Mobile data entry. Mobile data presentation. Remote control of a bigger Mac. Note taking. File transfer. A/V record/playback. Infinite others.

splashman
Nov 27, 2003, 01:47 AM
"Killer app." Harharhar. Please. This is a niche inside a niche.

The Almighty Jobs, like it or not, has a pretty good nose for where the money is. And it ain't here. Sure, there will be a few technodweebs who "need" it and yuppies with too much money who will open their wallet for the latest/greatest, but Joe & Josephine America will only shake their heads.

ITR 81
Nov 27, 2003, 02:11 AM
I say they need to bring on the Mac Watch. They showed a working version back in Las Vegas CES show in the early 90's. It had an OS and could browse the net wirelessly. I think they should come out with these watches and put smaller OSX OS on it to allow folks to take PDA style watch with them where ever they go. It could even allow for headphones to listen to MP3's, browse the net, firewire connection. I think it would be popular with kids.

mproud
Nov 27, 2003, 02:14 AM
I really think Steve is right on this one.

Come on, how many of you people, if you actually did buy one of these things, for, say $500, would actually stop using your TV?

Be serious.



That's right. You wouldn't.

And why would you? The TV works just fine. The point is, people like their TVs (to some extent). They have a working piece of equipment already which, although may not be wireless and internet capable, gets its job done. Why buy a portable version with extra gimmicks when you already have a working television and a computer, even if they are separate.

This technology is WAY too expensive and the time is certainly not right. Put it on the wish list next to the hovercraft and the universal multitool.

Bad Beaver
Nov 27, 2003, 02:18 AM
Originally posted by Lepton
Hardware: Aluminum skin. 8.5 by 5.5 inches (half the size of Letter size paper). 0.5 inches thick. 802.11g. One USB port. One 4-pin Firewire port. Two CF type II slots. One is filled with a required Microdrive such as IBM 1GB. Screen 8.5 inch diagonal. 600 by 900 pixel OLED. Touch sensitive. 4 hour battery life. Low power G3 500MHz. Single speaker. Audio I/O. Built-in microphone. No keyboard. No modem. No ethernet. No video ports. 2lbs. $2000.Uses: Mobile data entry. Mobile data presentation. Remote control of a bigger Mac. Note taking. File transfer. A/V record/playback. Infinite others.

Some very nice ideas, but your idea of price is ridiculous. As well as battery - 4 hours? I might just stay home instead. 8 hours is the absolute minimum. Also, it will not be much fun to present data on the go without at least a VGA connector.
The size would be near perfect.
It needs a super quiet foldable BT keyboard as an accessory.
Price? I'd say $1200.
People on campus to this day are all over my Newton 2100, fascinated to no end. Millions of this described Pen-orientated thin OSX minitablet could be sold into education channels.
It just hast to be neither too big nor too small, has to have the keyboard as an easy option, and it has to last all day.

splashman
Nov 27, 2003, 02:20 AM
Originally posted by mproud
This technology is WAY too expensive and the time is certainly not right. Put it on the wish list next to the hovercraft and the multitool.

Well said.

"Killer App." Hardeeharhar.

(I encourage MS and the various PeeCee re-packagers to dive headfirst into this market.)

dguisinger
Nov 27, 2003, 02:41 AM
Originally posted by fpnc
I have no inside information on this, but I'm going to predict that Apple is about ready to announce a significant and new A/V media-related consumer product. This could happen at this Friday's Apple Store special event or perhaps over the next week or two.

What I'm hoping for is a wireless media center that connects to your TV and/or stereo system. HP (and others) already have such products and I think Apple may be ready to introduce something similar using 802.11g (Airport Extreme). This product would allow you to use your Airport Extreme-Enabled Mac as a media server for your living room entertainment center. It would offer an iTunes-like interface to be displayed on your TV for music, an iPhoto-like interface for still images and slide shows, and (possibly) an interface to display streaming video from your Mac or from the internet.

The video option may be somewhat questionable, since that would require a reasonably powerful hardware/software decoder to reside in the media center itself. But let's face it, Airport Extreme should be able to handle MPEG2/4 streams without difficulty. Thus you could watch home video that resided on your Mac's hard drive (or CD-R or DVD-R) and eventually Apple might offer a video service similar to the iTunes Music Store. I think the video would be one way, from Mac to TV. It wouldn't allow you to record video from off-air or cable sources back to your Mac (i.e. it wouldn't act like a wireless TiVo unit).

I think this idea fits with Steve Jobs' obvious distain for so-called media center PCs. Since you'd be viewing and listening to the media on your big screen TV or stereo in the comfort of your living room.

The only questions might be how cheaply could such a device be made and do all current generation Macs have enough processing power to seamlessly run a media server while another (physical) user is actively using the same Macintosh?

Anyway, that's my prediction (or hope) and I think a product like this is more likely than a tablet Mac.

Agreed. Gateway just introduced (or is about to, i've seen pictures froma friend who works there) a Gateway receiver.... Apple needs to build a Receiver, with AM/FM tuner, A/V input selection, Toslink ports for in/out, built in amp, and possibly a tv tuner + DVR. Hook it to your network with ethernet, or to your mac directly with Firewire....and you have a video capture device, a device to send video to your TV/VCR, a way to use your computer as a DVD player, a way to send your music from iTunes to your stereo.

When Jobs says no merging of TV and Computers, he means LITTERALLY people. He means you aren't going to be watching TV on your iMac, or you arent going to use a 42" plasma as your computer. However making a AV Receiver with NO UI would be perfect... make a remote control that is like the iPod with the wheel and touch sensative buttons. Make it work and act and feel like standard AV entertainment system equipment, yet do so much more. This is my vision of convergance....Infact, I beleive its a lot of peoples vision, as it is probably Job's as well.

Towel
Nov 27, 2003, 03:13 AM
I think we're talking about two different products here. One is the full-featured TabletMac, which is bascially a nomal laptop (with touch-screen), just folded differently. I don't think this is what Cringley means. For one thing, TabletPCs tanked. For another, with 802.11 there's no need for a fancy new wireless connectivity protocol.

The second product is the wirelessly-tethered monitor. No CPU, no RAM, no drives, no nothing - except an LCD screen, an antenna, and the chips needed to bridge the two. It's completely dependent on its "server" - its mothership computer - for everything. The wireless link substitutes for a monitor cable, and you can control the GUI with a stylus. The advantages are essentially the same as for any laptop or TabletPC - use your computer anywhere (as long as you're in range of the mothership). But it's cheap - you could probably build this functionality into an iMac for nominal cost. It wouldn't have to be a standalone product, thought I suppose it could be sold as one as well, for use with, say, G5 motherships. It would probably cost just a little more than your average touchscreen LCD - not too much, in comparison to laptops/TabletPCs/PocketPCs.

This would be a very cool device, and one that people would easily get used to and incorporate into their lives. Surf in bed or on the couch. Show your vacation pictures to the in-laws in the sitting room. Read PDFs in front of the fireplace. Bring recipes into the kitchen. It just makes life simpler, but most importantly, doesn't cost much/any extra. You can do all this with a laptop, but then you have to actually buy a laptop, with the extra cost and fewer features that entails - and carry the whole thing around with you. Granted, you can't carry this thing to Starbucks, but if that's the kind of mobility you need, you *will* actually buy a laptop.

All in all, I've thought for several years that this could be a killer device. It's just been waiting for the right bandwidth.

fpnc
Nov 27, 2003, 03:52 AM
In response to my wireless media center idea you said:

Originally posted by dguisinger
Agreed. Gateway just introduced (or is about to, i've seen pictures from a friend who works there) a Gateway receiver.... Apple needs to build a Receiver, with AM/FM tuner, A/V input selection, Toslink ports for in/out, built in amp, and possibly a tv tuner + DVR. Hook it to your network with ethernet, or to your mac directly with Firewire....and you have a video capture device, a device to send video to your TV/VCR, a way to use your computer as a DVD player, a way to send your music from iTunes to your stereo.

However, I don't think we're talking about the same thing. I wasn't suggesting that Apple should directly compete with TiVo (digital VCR), DVD players, and the traditional A/V receiver products. The device that I proposed would simply provide a wireless link between the media content on your Mac or PC and the A/V products that you probably already own. And it would be a one-way link -- content would only "flow" from your Mac to your TV and audio amplifier/receiver.

The reason I place such limitations on my device is that it needs to be simple and fairly inexpensive, something like Apple's current Airport base station. Thus it has a remote control, an on/off switch, a text-based LCD display for displaying song, picture, and video ID (similar to the iPod display), and video and audio outputs. If you connect the video output to your TV you get a more detailed view of your media content (like iPhoto and iTunes) and you might also be able to view streaming video from your Mac (QuickTime movies, home videos, perhaps video content streamed from the internet).

It would NOT be a digital video recorder, or an AM/FM radio, or anything like a traditional A/V receiver. In fact it would require that you already own some type of audio/video receiver to amplify the audio and route the video to your TV (or you could plug the output directly into your TV).

Sheebahawk
Nov 27, 2003, 04:07 AM
Id love a tablet, but just as a remote to tell me if I get instant messaged, if my downloads are finished, To adjust itunes on my imaginary g5 pumping music through my houses speakers, to disconnect unwanted phone calls, or maybe even provide a link from tivo to my omputer so I ould burn shows onto DVD, and edit the ommercials out. And to read my morning newspaper with it, tell my fridge what I want for breakfast, program my mirowave to cook it, and to instruct rosie the robot to bring it to me. I don't need it for watching tv, because I have about 8 tv's with diret tv in my house, one in each room.

All this while I'm sitting on the toilet. I don't think a tablet would work, I'm all for interconnectivity between appliances, and electronic media in my house, but I don't think a tablet would solve this problem. A few problems with tablets... If I used it while sitting on the john, I might get **** on it. The exposed screen has no protection to the elements, and since it was a touch it would probably not look too sharp after a year or so. Theres no way to provide power to it to get the kind of use I would want out of it. I lose the remotes, my cel phone, and my wallet all the time, I'd probably lose the tablet too. Then I wouldn't be able to do anything. And what if it fell into the wrong hands? I don't want an enemy turning my own house against me.

I seriously don't think a tablet could make my life any easier, for the amount of money it would cost. An apple watch sounds cool though, if it was as styling as an ipod.... and had all the above mentioned functionality through voice recognition..

mhar4
Nov 27, 2003, 06:22 AM
Originally posted by kerryb
I've noticed some people (mostly under 30) have a really hard time not being connected to some electronic device. .... Are we raising a generation that has to be constantly entertained by an electronic device and cannot just experience a moment in time? This new device idea sounds like another way of making people think they are in their living rooms instead of in public. Why live in the real world when you can stare at a little screen and not count the cows when driving through the country side.


Amen to that. Who wants to rush around the house watching a movie on a little screen? Or "grab their email from a passing wifi hotspot"? It sounds like an overheated fanatsy of life in the fast lane. The real world is messy and complicated and doesn't work the way you want it to most of the time. Hey, just like this kind of technology...

sanford
Nov 27, 2003, 07:27 AM
Originally posted by fpnc
It would NOT be a digital video recorder, or an AM/FM radio, or anything like a traditional A/V receiver. In fact it would require that you already own some type of audio/video receiver to amplify the audio and route the video to your TV (or you could plug the output directly into your TV).


www.slimdevices.com

jouster
Nov 27, 2003, 08:16 AM
Originally posted by xTerryMon
1. Cell phones: There's nothing Apple can bring to the table that would be a compelling technological or value proposition to the consumer.
3. Personal Video Player: consumers aren't demanding this.

1.Jobs has stated that cell phones are the future not PDAs. The iPhone that Apple has registered will no doubt be Jobs breakdown of telecomunications; a web based phone once he gets all his ducks in a row. THAT is compelling technology.

3. No one had a demand for a HD based portable MP3 player either; iPod.

I find your first point, about internet telephony interesting, but would contest your second: the market that didn't exist was, as you say, for a HD based MP3 player. No one foresaw that there would be demand for such huge storage. But, and this is the most important part, the demand for the paradigm already existed. People were used to the idea of walking along with a small electronic device in their hand or pocket and earphones in their ears. They are not used to the idea of watching a movie on a 3" screen.

This isn't new; Casio was making hand held flat screen 3-4" LCD TVs in the 80s and 90s. How many people do you see using one these days?

Until video content an be delivered in a much more efficient manner - say, directly into the eye - I can't see a video iPod being much more than a gimmick.

Trimix
Nov 27, 2003, 09:58 AM
Originally posted by Towel

The second product is the wirelessly-tethered monitor. No CPU, no RAM, no drives, no nothing - except an LCD screen, an antenna, and the chips needed to bridge the two. It's completely dependent on its "server" - its mothership computer - for everything. The wireless link substitutes for a monitor cable, and you can control the GUI with a stylus. The advantages are essentially the same as for any laptop or TabletPC - use your computer anywhere (as long as you're in range of the mothership). But it's cheap - you could probably build this functionality into an iMac for nominal cost. It wouldn't have to be a standalone product, thought I suppose it could be sold as one as well, for use with, say, G5 motherships. It would probably cost just a little more than your average touchscreen LCD - not too much, in comparison to laptops/TabletPCs/PocketPCs.

All in all, I've thought for several years that this could be a killer device. It's just been waiting for the right bandwidth.

have seen this thing about a year ago already - damn, forgot who makes it.

Trimix
Nov 27, 2003, 10:00 AM
dear sj, as it is almost christmas i just want a nokia communicator married to an i-pod - that's all - thank you

snofseth
Nov 27, 2003, 10:04 AM
[QUOTE]Originally posted by Lepton
[B]Hardware: Aluminum skin. 8.5 by 5.5 inches (half the size of Letter size paper). 0.5 inches thick. 802.11g. One USB port. One 4-pin Firewire port. Two CF type II slots. One is filled with a required Microdrive such as IBM 1GB. Screen 8.5 inch diagonal. 600 by 900 pixel OLED. Touch sensitive. 4 hour battery life. Low power G3 500MHz. Single speaker. Audio I/O. Built-in microphone. No keyboard. No modem. No ethernet. No video ports. 2lbs. $2000.

That price is way to much, it is called paper if you need to right on something, but what i think apple should do is build in into the powerbook without extra cost so if you want to you could write on the screen aside from the software if you just use it like an easly there is not much extra hardware neccesary just differnt screen and stli so occasionally if you need to use it you can i think thats how you enter the market they could also to some cool way to switch the screen to flat but I need a keyboard we use computers so we don't have to right some tablets right now are 2000 dollor packs of paper

That

@HomeNow
Nov 27, 2003, 12:11 PM
The biggest problem that I see with the tablet is that the Mac community, and media will expect Wacom quality in the touch screens, but will only want to pay Dell prices for the tablet. Its a loose, loose situation for Apple in the press on this, either too expensive or the tough screen isn't up to the standards that we expect from Apple.

sethypoo
Nov 27, 2003, 12:37 PM
Originally posted by Hawthorne
If not them, then a year after that, Michael Dell will.:D

Seriously, between this, the rumors of a $749 device, and a snow-white enclosure 10 inches by 6 by 1 (old rumor, fuzzy memory), and the fact that Apple pioneered 802.11b and embraced 802.11g before that was a standard, this makes all kinds of sense.

Now team it up with an iPod to use as a shuttle. Imagine syncing up your movies, music, files, contact information and meetings on the iPod, and then plugging that iPod into a recessed Dock connector on the Apple tablet. You'd watch movies and the iTunes Visualizer on the Tablet, make changes to your schedule or phone numbers, or do lightweight computing, then either sync via this "Super Bluetooth" or shuttle the iPod back to your Mac.

*drool*

(edited typos)

Um, I think I'd rather do all my computing, be it light or heavy, from my computer.

I don't need an extra $749.00 accessory that does everything my 12" PowerBook G4 does.

Useless.:(

JGowan
Nov 27, 2003, 12:43 PM
Originally posted by sanford ...Jobs just doesn't see the personal computer as the nexus of the home entertainment enivronment; rather, the glue between disparate portable digital devices -- cameras, music players, etc. Frankly, I tend to agree with him. I like my TV where it is: away from me.Well if Apple were to get involved in any type of committment to Television and connecting it to TV and PC, I think a better device (than a tablet) would be the Digital Video Recorder.

Tivo and ReplayTV are both awesome -- I own 2 ReplayTVs and 1 Tivo and know that, as far as the ultimate television experience, the DVR as a concept is where it is at.

Tivo is taking things further with being able to share music and photos to your television -- at a price, however -- you have to have the newer units and it costs an extra fee.

Of the two operating systems of both Tivo and ReplayTV, Tivo might have the edge, but can you imagine what Apple could do? This is where Apple turns people on to their computer. So far, Apple has been giving Windows users the IPOD experience and now, the ITUNES experience -- so that they will know firsthand just what their missing in the computer world. So far, that's been fine.

But what if Apple created the definitive DVR with a Panther experience? Night after Night, people come home and experience 1 part of the Panther experience with their TVs. Wouldn't that make them want to have a similar experience in the computing world? I think so. Especially if Apple linked the two together as you know they would...

1) No subscription fee -- In order for the DVR to work, it needs a guide. This should be free of cost to achieve the most mass adoption.

2) Sharing Photos and Music -- this is a no-brainer. It would be done at no extra cost either, which would awesome!

3) Video Archiving -- Sending video over to your Apple computer (only) to easily edit out commercials and burn to DVD. I know this will have lots of people up-in-arms, but honestly, why? This technology already exists and nobody says BOO. I can already connect a VCR to my computer, digitize the video, edit it and export it to DVD or back to another videotape. Apple would simply make it easy-to-do. It would be awesome. They would sell lots of DVD blanks, too, which would drive down the cost of them (good for us) and be another money-maker (good for Apple).

4) Email/Web -- I owned one of the early WebTVs and I must admit, hated it. It was overpriced and didn't work well. The browser sucked and wasn't really compatible with the real world. However, I just think that this is another way that Apple could bring a change to this type of use so that it could "be done right". It's a good idea. The computer now is becoming so multi-faceted that I am jumping back and forth all night from TV to Computer to surf the web to get information about a brief Commercial or News item I saw that I want to confirm or get more details. With an Apple DVR that was also connected to an Apple Computer, I think they could cut out a lot of jumping around and bring about the kind of experience many of us want.

5) .MAC -- Those who know DVRs know that you need a channel guide. And while should provide this for free, there's probably a world of ways that Apple could extend people into their .MAC community. I haven't really given it a lot of thought, but I'm sure that they could.

6) Free Apple advertisement -- ReplayTV did this VERY UNFAIRLY and pushed commecials on us every time we pushed the PAUSE button. It annoyed the hell out of me. BUT -- what if Apple simply had a small WHAT'S NEW AT APPLE button for those curious of "what else" Apple was up to? Instant eye-poping visuals of all the latest and greatest hardware. If it was shoved down your throat, I'm sure people would love to have the opportunity to see what Apple was up to. Although my PC friends haven't "seen the light", they are still curious about what Apple might be doing because they know that Apple is a great innovator.

Bottomline, they could create such an experience in the Living room that people would want to continue it in the Study.

sethypoo
Nov 27, 2003, 12:57 PM
Originally posted by JGowan


Of the two operating systems of both Tivo and ReplayTV, Tivo might have the edge, but can you imagine what Apple could do? This is where Apple turns people on to their computer. So far, Apple has been giving Windows users the IPOD experience and now, the ITUNES experience -- so that they will know firsthand just what their missing in the computer world. So far, that's been fine.

But what if Apple created the definitive DVR with a Panther experience? Night after Night, people come home and experience 1 part of the Panther experience with their TVs. Wouldn't that make them want to have a similar experience in the computing world? I think so. Especially if Apple linked the two together as you know they would...



Bottomline, they could create such an experience in the Living room that people would want to continue it in the Study.

That's pure genius.....what a wonderful idea. I couldn't see a better course of action for Apple Computer to take: starting to dominate the home theater market! Yes!

I'd get one.

Gogmagog
Nov 27, 2003, 02:47 PM
I think that to have some more cred in the business community as such, an Apple tablet is something to seriously consider, even though it would be even more niche than other Macs and quite expensive as a result.

Take here in NZ for example, PC tablets are making theire way into the hands of doctors in hospitals an other healthcare based institutions. I could see other uses especially in education, even in graphic design in which it could replace the Wacom type tablet (not the really big ones of course).

As for in the home it would be cool to have internet access to go.

They would just have to make sure that they do it right.

Gog

Bad Beaver
Nov 27, 2003, 03:02 PM
Originally posted by snofseth
[QUOTE]Originally posted by Lepton
[B]
That price is way to much, it is called paper if you need to right on something, but what i think apple should do is build in into the powerbook without extra cost so if you want to you could write on the screen aside from the software if you just use it like an easly there is not much extra hardware neccesary just differnt screen and stli so occasionally if you need to use it you can i think thats how you enter the market they could also to some cool way to switch the screen to flat but I need a keyboard we use computers so we don't have to right some tablets right now are 2000 dollor packs of paper
That

I do not quite get your first sentence, do you mean we should write on paper instead of having a tablet? No way, paper sucks. The fold-flat display notebook is a nice idea, but it is not new, many TabletPC makers have them. While I truely think that it is a nice idea (how many times did you want to take a simple darft and could not do it because you had no touchscreen?), it adds a lot of cost, and it cannot be done as a simple option due to the folding mechanism -> separate products.
The idea behind having a pure tablet for writing is getting rid of all the notebook clutter - keyboard, optical drive - for a much smaller and lighter unit, and you could still have a foldable keyboard as Stowaway does them.
Tablets have a very important advantage over notebooks, especially at university and other face-to-face / small group situations - they are less intrusive. No wall-like display to separate you, no annoying typing noise.

zync
Nov 27, 2003, 07:23 PM
Originally posted by gerardrj
Steve has never (to my knowledge) lied about Apple's development projects. If he doens't want to talk about something he says he won't(can't) talk about it. If he does say something about a topic related to development, his word is law.

Steve has outright stated that Apple will not be developing:

2. Tablet PCs: consumer data shows that there's no demand for these devices. The only reason they are in the market place is because Bill Gates was enamoured with them and coerced some manufacturers in to building a few models. Sales data flesh this out, sales are pitiful.

I was scouring this thread to see if someone said this...congratulations, you're probably the only one on here who's said this...I distinctly remember Steve disliking the Tablet PC just as much as a non-single-button mouse....I also find it completely stupid to have portable video anything...they're pointless except for travel and possibly doctors visits but if you can't be patient that long you have problems....the reason? unlike the iPod which plays audio, you have to usually watch video in addition to listen to the audio to even justify such a device...you can't use this in the car, walking around, or while doing anything that requires the attention of vision...I would hate for the iPod to turn into this task either, it's for music and that's all...sure it might be a novelty but that will wear off as soon as you realize that it's not going to be useful....besides, a DVD-equipped laptop can provide the same results...even a non-DVD laptop could if it has ripped versions of movies....

zync
Nov 27, 2003, 07:53 PM
I do like the headless terminal + LCD (Prefer OLED though, especially due to cost) idea...and controlling the house would be interesting...but to have something to carry to watch movies is pointless....besides it's just another reason Americans continue to become fatter :D

jalterman
Nov 27, 2003, 08:40 PM
It seems to me that a "wireless monitor" could be precisely the new form factor they're talking about for the new iMacs. Imagine a computer that didn't have any cables -- even the cubes, for all their beauty, had cables. Doing this would redefine the PC. Apps become secondary, but the possibilities (both instantly and in the future) in this scenario are endless.

sinclairZX81
Nov 27, 2003, 09:07 PM
Originally posted by pimentoLoaf
Oh, my. In Britain they'll no doubt soon pass a law requiring computer owners to have their systems licensed before use -- as they do for TV's.

WHAT are you smoking?

jouster
Nov 27, 2003, 10:31 PM
Originally posted by sinclairZX81
WHAT are you smoking?

This may seem like an absurd idea, but as things stand, the author of the original comment is in fact correct. Any device which receives a Tv signal requires you to buy a TV Licence in the UK. So even if you own just a VCR and no TV, you are in theory required to get a licence.

Ridiculous but true, and you can bet the BBC will extend it to any computer based TV viewing system.

PS ZX81, I was a beeb user, so my location would be HIMEM! :)

apelet
Nov 27, 2003, 11:37 PM
It hasn't been a massive success, but Sony has already done this (http://www.sony.jp/airboard/indexpc.html). I remember seeing the Airboard in Japan, almost two years ago.

All the demo units I saw didn't work that well, but the idea is that you leave the base station somewhere, and you can carry the thing around. You can watch TV, DVDs, write e-mail, browse the web, and use it as a photo viewer. The software is proprietary, and it isn't a tablet, in the normal sense. It doesn't have full PC capabilities, and the battery seems to last only two hours, but it fits most of the hub stuff that Cringely talks about in the article. Except that PAN bit.

I'm sure Apple is aware that this thing exists, and that it hasn't been selling in huge numbers in Japan. Steve Jobs probably wouldn't be keen on copying an idea already done by Sony.

Nice guess, but try again.

ITMediaCo
Nov 28, 2003, 12:29 AM
Not sure if anyone has come across this, or if it has been previously posted:

http://www.pbs.org/cringely/pulpit/pulpit20031127.html

Looks like there wont be any tablet.

fpnc
Nov 28, 2003, 02:23 AM
In response to my post about an APPLE wireless media center sanford wrote:

Originally posted by sanford
www.slimdevices.com

Yes, I know about these devices and in my original post I mentioned that HP and others already produced similar products.

As for the people who are asking for an Apple-labeled DVR I don't think that is going to happen. Right now the DVR hardware is being sold pretty much as a loss leader (i.e. at no profit). What TiVo and the others want is your monthly subscription dollars, they don't expect much in the way of profits from the sale of the hardware. Also, it is my opinion that DVR functionality is going to be controlled (or taken over) by the media service providers (cable and satellite TV providers). Thus, I don't think there is any real space for Apple in that product category.

As for the wireless LCD tablet that links to and/or relies upon your Mac or PC. Well, that's an interesting idea but I think given today's technology that such a device would be just about as expensive as an iBook. To build such a device you'd pretty much have all of the component requirements of a tablet PC. You might be able to do without the hard disk, but that's about it. You'd still need a fairly fast processor, a relatively expensive video display system, local DRAM and ROM, batteries and power management, i/o and wireless functionality, and a touch or pen sensitive input method.

In contrast to that a wireless media center that attaches to your A/V receiver and TV is pretty much a DRIVELESS DVD player (in cost and complexity) but with wireless transfer of the media (JPEG, MPEG2/4, MP3, AAC). Apple should be able to use off-the-shelf components to build such a device fairly cheaply and still earn a reasonable profit off of the hardware sale. There are already devices like this on the market (have been for at least a year or two) so this would be nothing difficult or new but a clever industrial design combined with some Apple software magic could produce a successful new product category for Apple.

fpnc
Nov 28, 2003, 02:30 AM
ITMediaCo, I'm not certain what you are trying to show here. The link you provided is the very same article that started this thread.

Originally posted by ITMediaCo
Not sure if anyone has come across this, or if it has been previously posted:

http://www.pbs.org/cringely/pulpit/pulpit20031127.html

Looks like there wont be any tablet.

widesky
Nov 28, 2003, 04:15 AM
i think the tv/computer merger is often misunderstood. The iapps and quicktime lend their content to being displayed in other environments as well as a computer screen.

My wish product (since this is what most of these posts seem to be about) is a low grade computer in a hifi form factor that enables me to play my itunes library through my hifi and iphoto, imovie and quicktime libraries through my tv. It would have adequate storage so it coulld be standalone but equally it would network through rendevous to my pc. Throw in a dvd drive so I can use it as a dvd player and the ability to record video streams and you have a component that enhances apple's product line considerably and opens up new markets that others know is there but haven't the ability to capitalise on.

demagalhaes
Nov 28, 2003, 06:44 AM
a few days ago a rumor start to spread in the rumors sites, the new iMac.... could it be that Apple is it going to make a tablet iMac (New Form factor)... if the cupertino company is going this way they won´t trash the actual iMac, only give an option, why not, bluetooth keyboards?, everything is pointing that direction..... we have to remember that phillips was the first TV maker who adopts the randevouz protocol..... so the new iMac form factor... could it be named tMac?


ony for the records.... i was the first person to predict a couple of years ago that apple was going to use IBM´s 970 for the G5 (when the 970 was only for server use only)....

regards
Juan Eduardo De Magalhaes-Calvet

Wender
Nov 28, 2003, 08:14 AM
The only thing stopping me from buying an iPod, a 12" PowerBook or an iBook is the amount of storage.

I know - iPods max out at 40GB and -Books at 80GB, but many people I know including myself own tons of CDs and I would really like to take my entire digital collection with me on trips anywhere, to my friends, next door etc.

CDs have been around since the early 80s and lots of people have vast collections. I have 1600 compact discs now converted to AAC and MP3, stored on a 200GB external noisy FW drive which is not very portable. I'm at 110GB of music at the moment. I play music shared from my iMac over Airport to an old PowerBook placed on top of my stereo. Works OK but I really wish my music could be stored on the PowerBook so I could just take it with me anywhere. Last time I went on a trip to a friends cabin I took the PowerBook and the external FW drive with me. Everyone used iTunes DJ-ing the music, but the drive is noisy and it is too much to carry in a lot of situations.

My point: All I really need is a small "-book" or "-pod" with more storage. Don't get me started on video storage demands, we need larger drives - not fancier equipment. A -Book would work just fine with all the iApps and sound/video output. I consider buying an old black PB with expansion bay drives from MCE - 3 x 80 GB, but will iTunes handle the three volumes? Maybe it's not a good solution...

ITMediaCo
Nov 28, 2003, 11:39 AM
Originally posted by fpnc
ITMediaCo, I'm not certain what you are trying to show here. The link you provided is the very same article that started this thread.

I appologize for reposting.. or being repetitive. Just a link I found, didn't actually notice if it was previously posted.

macnews
Nov 28, 2003, 12:16 PM
Why do so many of you damn the tablet? I don't want to WATCH tv on a tablet or a computer - but CONTROLLING my entire home entertainment system from my computer - yes, that I would like to do. You can already control/share with some TIVO devices, expand this to a computer. I would love to schedule and record shows to a non-monthly subscription device and have the ability to pause live tv and play back (thus the need for wide band wireless).

I would also love to use my built-in jukebox (iTunes) to play my music over my home entertainment system. OR be able to broadcast internet radio over my home speakers.

Oh and how about this, I want to watch a DVD but don't have a DVD player - save the one on my computer. Now I could stream my video to my tv. I don't know how it would work keeping a DVD library, would require a ton of hard disk space. But now if I wanted to access the DVD rom features I could also stream those to the tv as well.

Not to mention creating an iMovie and streaming that to the TV rahter than buring a DVD or video CD.

What I see isn't so much a "tablet" as an other digital hub type device. Something that could hook up to the TV, stereo (have all the right inputs svideo, rca, optical, etc.) and have wireless conectivity.

I know options are availalbe or made by M$, but I want an Apple option. One that just works! One that is easy to use. Easy to setup.

ncbill
Nov 28, 2003, 01:37 PM
For subscription, DVRs from the cable/satellite company (DirectTivo), have the standalone Tivo/Reply devices beat all hollow ($5/month for DirecTivo gets you 2 tuners)

Standalone devices - the DMR-E80H is nice (80GB hard drive and DVD-R/RAM burner for $500) - upgrade to the DMR-E100 and get 120GB hard drive and Firewire input (burn those miniDV tapes to DVD for $800, or load your videos to it from your computer via Firewire)

fpnc
Nov 28, 2003, 02:25 PM
Originally posted by macnews
Why do so many of you damn the tablet? I don't want to WATCH tv on a tablet or a computer - but CONTROLLING my entire home entertainment system from my computer - yes, that I would like to do. You can already control/share with some TIVO devices, expand this to a computer. I would love to schedule and record shows to a non-monthly subscription device and have the ability to pause live tv and play back (thus the need for wide band wireless).
......

macnews, I agree with some of your points (wireless iTunes, internet radio, and QuickTime playback on your TV). However, I don't understand your apparent mixing of the tablet idea with the DVR functionality (your post seems to suggest that connection).

As far as I know even Airport Extreme can not handle the data rates associated with standard definition TV unless the video is compressed (in fact, in the "real world" I don't think it could even support DV data rates). So, if you want to wirelessly transmit digital video BACK to your Mac you'll need a realtime MPEG2/4 compressor within the wireless transmitter that is connected to your TV. While that could be done it would certainly add to the cost of the product.

In contrast, all I want is a wireless method to get the A/V media on my Mac (already compressed and ready for streaming) and listen to and display that on my home stereo and TV. While there are already products that can wirelessly transmit audio and still images, I'd like to see a relatively inexpensive offering from Apple that would also support MPEG2/4 video FROM my Mac to the TV. Eventually I might want a product that could transmit the media BOTH ways but that would certainly be a more expensive and complex product (a second or third generation unit that would be introduced after price drops and the wider adaption of digital TV in source form).

fpnc
Nov 28, 2003, 04:24 PM
Okay, here are some products that do most (or more) of what I'd like in a wireless media center. Unfortunately it appears that nearly every such product is PC only. That's one reason I'd like to see Apple enter this field.

Here is a link to a review done by PC Magazine on several devices that they term media hubs or diskless media players (many are in the $150 to $300 U.S. price range):

http://www.pcmag.com/category2/0,4148,924250,00.asp

And here is a link to the product page for the device that they gave the editors' choice award:

http://www.prismiq.com/products/index.asp

Even though this Prismiq device seems to be gathering some good reviews, I've noted several user reports that say it is very hard to setup and use and that it is very buggy (and, anyway, it is PC only). However, this product does even more than I would want it to and it costs only about $300 when configured for wireless operation. If there was a product like this from Apple and it was priced below $400 then I would have bought it like yesterday. I might even go higher (on price) if it was really, really nice (maybe act as an Airport repeater to extend the range of my base station and it should have a built-in text display for navigation and music selection without the need of having the TV switched on).

Towel
Nov 28, 2003, 05:04 PM
Originally posted by fpnc
As for the wireless LCD tablet that links to and/or relies upon your Mac or PC. Well, that's an interesting idea but I think given today's technology that such a device would be just about as expensive as an iBook.

I disagree. You're envisioning this as a thin client with a airport file-sharing link to a server. Try thinking of just a regular monitor with a wireless monitor cable. *Evereything* is in the CPU. The monitor is just a monitor. The main obstancles to this sort of set up are responsiveness and bandwidth.

As for responsiveness, I get 2-3ms pings to my 802.11 router, which is surely responsive enough for most uses - your average LCD only has 15-30ms response times anyway. Bandwidth is more challenging. A 1024x768 screen with 32 bits per pixel requires about 3MB of data per screen refresh. 3MB x 40 refreshes per second is a lot of data. But you could probably work things out so it only sends new data (LCDs don't refresh anyway) and reduce that to a few MB per second - well within the range of current technology. IMO, this is the only plausible idea. It's *not* a new product, it just adds useful functionality to current products at little extra cost - making them a more compelling buy. Very much like Airport.

zync
Nov 29, 2003, 01:38 AM
Originally posted by demagalhaes
ony for the records.... i was the first person to predict a couple of years ago that apple was going to use IBM´s 970 for the G5 (when the 970 was only for server use only)....

No offense (I realize saying this always makes someone offended but anyway) but that's a pretty pretentious claim...

zync
Nov 29, 2003, 01:43 AM
Originally posted by macnews
Why do so many of you damn the tablet? I don't want to WATCH tv on a tablet or a computer - but CONTROLLING my entire home entertainment system from my computer - yes, that I would like to do. You can already control/share with some TIVO devices, expand this to a computer. I would love to schedule and record shows to a non-monthly subscription device and have the ability to pause live tv and play back (thus the need for wide band wireless).

I would also love to use my built-in jukebox (iTunes) to play my music over my home entertainment system. OR be able to broadcast internet radio over my home speakers.

Oh and how about this, I want to watch a DVD but don't have a DVD player - save the one on my computer. Now I could stream my video to my tv. I don't know how it would work keeping a DVD library, would require a ton of hard disk space. But now if I wanted to access the DVD rom features I could also stream those to the tv as well.

Not to mention creating an iMovie and streaming that to the TV rahter than buring a DVD or video CD.

What I see isn't so much a "tablet" as an other digital hub type device. Something that could hook up to the TV, stereo (have all the right inputs svideo, rca, optical, etc.) and have wireless conectivity.

I know options are availalbe or made by M$, but I want an Apple option. One that just works! One that is easy to use. Easy to setup.

You could get a lot of that with a DVD player. Some of them have an ethernet port so you can stream audio/video to your TV and it's speakers...I've been planning on setting up a small server for this purpose, but I think I'll just wait until I move out because my dad isn't as keen on the idea for some reason...

dgbatchelor
Nov 29, 2003, 01:50 AM
Originally posted by SuperChuck
When Jobs repeatedly says something, he usually means it. I think everyone else in the world agrees that the one-button mouse is ready for extinction, but Jobs has stood his ground and lost a lot of potential customers for it. As mentioned in the article, he has repeatedly said that a computer without a keyboard is not a good idea.

On this one, I completely agree. As a designer, I love the idea of writing on my screen...just as long as I don't HAVE to write on my screen to get anything done. The keyboard allows me to write this message far faster than I could by "writing" it by hand. And for those who want more than one button on their mouse - imagine a whole computer with one button: the power switch.

Since we know how true Mr. Jobs is to his word, I think the tablet may be the screen of a new generation of powerbooks. All the convenience of a portable tablet, all the joys of doodling on the screen, and all without the nightmare of trying to multitask with a stylus (the NO button mouse).

Imagine the ProTab/iTab with the base of a PowerBook/iBook... Replace the keyboard/trackpad with the LCD screen... Add external bluetooth keyboard/mouse...

Want a 12" iTab? Fine... Want a 23" PowerTab? Awesome! :D

zync
Nov 29, 2003, 02:04 AM
Originally posted by fpnc
As far as I know even Airport Extreme can not handle the data rates associated with standard definition TV unless the video is compressed (in fact, in the "real world" I don't think it could even support DV data rates). So, if you want to wirelessly transmit digital video BACK to your Mac you'll need a realtime MPEG2/4 compressor within the wireless transmitter that is connected to your TV. While that could be done it would certainly add to the cost of the product.


Actually DV is 3.6MBps....Airport cannot handle those rates but Airport Extreme can with it's transfer rate of 6.75MBps...note this is Megabytes not Megabits....and yes this would even be able to do it with the overhead of 256-bit encryption....now of course this is considering that you have a good connection via Airport Extreme...you would be better off with some sort of compression though obviously, especially as there would be little left for other bandwith uses like internet, etc...

zync
Nov 29, 2003, 02:24 AM
Originally posted by Towel
But you could probably work things out so it only sends new data (LCDs don't refresh anyway) and reduce that to a few MB per second - well within the range of current technology. IMO, this is the only plausible idea. It's *not* a new product, it just adds useful functionality to current products at little extra cost - making them a more compelling buy. Very much like Airport.

It's true that LCDs don't have a refresh rate like a normal CRT, but they do refresh. If they never refreshed you'd never get any cursor movement on screen when you moved the mouse. It just doesn't refresh the entire screen.

fpnc
Nov 29, 2003, 03:21 AM
Originally posted by zync
Actually DV is 3.6MBps....Airport cannot handle those rates but Airport Extreme can with it's transfer rate of 6.75MBps...note this is Megabytes not Megabits....and yes this would even be able to do it with the overhead of 256-bit encryption....now of course this is considering that you have a good connection via Airport Extreme...you would be better off with some sort of compression though obviously, especially as there would be little left for other bandwith uses like internet, etc...

True, in theory it could work. However, you can't assume 100% efficiency. You'd most likely get closer to one half of the theoretical data rate which means that DV would pretty much "choke" the entire bandwidth. Most of the real-world data rates that I've seen for 802.11g have been in the 20 to 30 mbps range. So, 3.6MBps * 8 equals about 29Mbps. I'd guess that it wouldn't work very well for DV.

zync
Nov 29, 2003, 03:58 AM
Originally posted by fpnc
True, in theory it could work. However, you can't assume 100% efficiency. You'd most likely get closer to one half of the theoretical data rate which means that DV would pretty much "choke" the entire bandwidth. Most of the real-world data rates that I've seen for 802.11g have been in the 20 to 30 mbps range. So, 3.6MBps * 8 equals about 29Mbps. I'd guess that it wouldn't work very well for DV.

I did make note of that in my post just not expressly...I said that you had to have a really good signal and that you wouldn't be able to do anything else with it...

@HomeNow
Nov 29, 2003, 01:20 PM
Originally posted by zync
Actually DV is 3.6MBps....Airport cannot handle those rates but Airport Extreme can with it's transfer rate of 6.75MBps...note this is Megabytes not Megabits....and yes this would even be able to do it with the overhead of 256-bit encryption....now of course this is considering that you have a good connection via Airport Extreme...you would be better off with some sort of compression though obviously, especially as there would be little left for other bandwith uses like internet, etc...

I would think that for this reason you would want at least a small HD on the system so that you could send in over at a slower rate (probably compressed with the best available codec) and "Cache" it at the device. It might take longer to start up a movie, but it would be a more efficient use of network bandwidth.

As far as a tablet as a remote control is concerned, I have used a Palm as a remote. It is nice and convenient to use, however there is a lot to be said about having physical buttons for use on a remote control as opposed to virtual ones represented by an area on a screen, and that is that you can "feel" them without actually looking at them and discern their function by the shape or position on the remote. To me, this makes it more useful to have a universal remote for everyday use.

7on
Nov 29, 2003, 01:47 PM
Tablets are horrid pieces of equipment. All the disadvantages of PDAs and Laptops rolled together. I do think the next iMac design might resemble a Tablet, but it'd still need to be plugged in and not rely on battery. Probably look like a Cinema Display but be a little thicker to accommodate for the actual computer stuff. But Tablets will never hit it off.

Someone already said that you could connect to a TV wirelessly on a Mac, so if you want to do it, you can do it without a blessing from Apple.

zync
Nov 29, 2003, 02:03 PM
Originally posted by @HomeNow
I would think that for this reason you would want at least a small HD on the system so that you could send in over at a slower rate (probably compressed with the best available codec) and "Cache" it at the device. It might take longer to start up a movie, but it would be a more efficient use of network bandwidth.

That's what I had in mind, but I really was thinking more of a just an i/PowerBook...

fpnc
Nov 29, 2003, 04:38 PM
As far as DV over Airport Extreme, it appears that we sort of agree that it wouldn't be very practical and that was my original point. Also, DV is already a compressed video format so adding more compression on top of that would probably only result in decreased quality and/or very little reduction in the required bandwidth. That's why I've always said that a wireless digital video system would probably have to rely on either MPEG2 or MPEG4 (or take your pick of any codec that would result in data rates well below 20mbps, preferably no higher than 10mbps). I don't think isn't a good idea to stress any transport medium to its limit, particularly with a content like streaming video or audio.

frinky23
Nov 29, 2003, 09:57 PM
Originally posted by wHo_tHe
Sounds like great technology we'd all love to have, of course.

But the article seems to suggest Apple is backing DS-CDMA, the "underdog" technology competing for the 802.15.3 standard, whose inventor has just been bought by Motorola.

I had thought Apple and Motorola's business relationship had soured intensely after the long delays -- and ultimately, Motorola's outright failure -- in ramping up G4 speed.

This could mean that Apple is once again placing a key technology in the hands of a supplier who has failed them before. I think we can all agree the (lack of) speed of the G4 was hurting Apple business before the 970 arrived.

On the other hand, of course, the interference problems with Multiband OFDM sound like they could cripple the technology to the equivalent of little more than a 6-foot cat 5 cable, something my junk drawer has more than enough of right now, thank you very much.

Bottom line, some sort of wide-band wireless technology will exist in the next couple of years and someone -- perhaps Apple -- will be poised enough and deliver the right mix of computing and entertainment to have their product shape the marketplace.

Well, to its credit, Motorola has a LOT of experience in CDMA technology, both in standard CDMA and Wideband CDMA (as used in upcoming UMTS systems), and their implementations have been rock solid, hardware-wise. They have some of the smallest and highest-performing hardware solutions in the cellular infrastructure business. They probably figure that they can use this headstart to their advantage in DS-CDMA.

zync
Nov 29, 2003, 11:56 PM
Originally posted by fpnc
As far as DV over Airport Extreme, it appears that we sort of agree that it wouldn't be very practical and that was my original point. Also, DV is already a compressed video format so adding more compression on top of that would probably only result in decreased quality and/or very little reduction in the required bandwidth. That's why I've always said that a wireless digital video system would probably have to rely on either MPEG2 or MPEG4 (or take your pick of any codec that would result in data rates well below 20mbps, preferably no higher than 10mbps). I don't think isn't a good idea to stress any transport medium to its limit, particularly with a content like streaming video or audio.

I agree except I believe from my prof explaining last semester that DV isn't really compressed per se....it's actually a hardware compression which occurs at the point when it is transferred to a computer, etc. But yes, I agree, unless this device would only be to stream video to a TV over Airport Extreme, it'd be pretty stupid to nearly use the max bandwith of Airport Extreme. You'd also increase the chances of dropping frames or even the entire feed long enough for it to be completely annoying, not to mention you'd almost need line-of-sight for it not to do that :)

IJ Reilly
Nov 30, 2003, 12:55 AM
Originally posted by Towel
I disagree. You're envisioning this as a thin client with a airport file-sharing link to a server. Try thinking of just a regular monitor with a wireless monitor cable. *Evereything* is in the CPU. The monitor is just a monitor. The main obstancles to this sort of set up are responsiveness and bandwidth.

Yes, a "walkabout" monitor is a nice concept, but the input problems aren't easily solved. Either the keyboard comes along for the ride somehow, which defeats most of the purpose, or the monitor is a touch screen -- which is the tablet nightmare in another, and not much more palatable, form. Maybe Apple's figured out how to solve these problems, but I doubt it. Hardly seems worth the effort, if you ask me.

fpnc
Nov 30, 2003, 02:28 AM
Originally posted by zync
I agree except I believe from my prof explaining last semester that DV isn't really compressed per se....it's actually a hardware compression which occurs at the point when it is transferred to a computer, etc.

I'm pretty certain that DV is similar to MPEG or motion JPEG and it operates at about a 5:1 compression ratio.

Here is a selection from the link at:

http://graphics.lcs.mit.edu/~tbuehler/video/dv.html

What is DV?

There are three tape formats that are known as DV formats: MiniDV, DVCAM, and DVCPRO. All three utilize the same compression method called DV25 (which is sometimes just referred to as DV compression)....

DV25 Specifications
As stated above, DV25 is the codec used to compress all video that is recorded onto a MiniDV, DVCAM, and DVCPRO tape. This compression occurs when the information is written on the tape. People often refer to "uncompressed DV," which is a bit of a misnomer. DV is always compressed; it's just a very light compression. There is no way to record onto a DV tape and not have the information compressed into the DV25 format. "Uncompressed DV" usually means that no additional compression is added during the capture process. A better term that is often used is "raw DV."

zync
Nov 30, 2003, 02:43 AM
Originally posted by fpnc
I'm pretty certain that DV is similar to MPEG or motion JPEG and it operates at about a 5:1 compression ratio.

Here is a selection from the link at:

http://graphics.lcs.mit.edu/~tbuehler/video/dv.html

What is DV?

There are three tape formats that are known as DV formats: MiniDV, DVCAM, and DVCPRO. All three utilize the same compression method called DV25 (which is sometimes just referred to as DV compression)....

DV25 Specifications
As stated above, DV25 is the codec used to compress all video that is recorded onto a MiniDV, DVCAM, and DVCPRO tape. This compression occurs when the information is written on the tape. People often refer to "uncompressed DV," which is a bit of a misnomer. DV is always compressed; it's just a very light compression. There is no way to record onto a DV tape and not have the information compressed into the DV25 format. "Uncompressed DV" usually means that no additional compression is added during the capture process. A better term that is often used is "raw DV."

I dunno then. I guess I stand corrected. I guess I'll have to talk to my prof about it again one day. In either case it's still not compressed that much. Maybe he said it was compressed as it was recorded instead of being recorded and then compressed later on? That's probably it. It was a semester ago, give me slack :D

Scottgfx
Nov 30, 2003, 05:05 AM
Where the three DV formats differ is in their track-pitches (different linear speed), and tape formulations. (Metal Evaporated: MiniDV, Metal Particle: DVCPro, DVCAM???)

The big problem with DV25 is the sampling of Chroma. It's a 4:1:1 ratio with 1 sample of each of the two color components for every 4 samples of Luminance. It makes doing green-screen work very hard.

I think where DV, Mpeg and MotionJpeg are similar are in the algorithms used. Aren't they all based on DCT?

I used to work on a editing system based on Wavelet compression called VideoCube. Wavelet is what is now being used in Apple's Pixlet codec. VideoCube was more like 10 or 20:1 compression and artifacted in a much different way than DCT codecs.


Originally posted by fpnc
I'm pretty certain that DV is similar to MPEG or motion JPEG and it operates at about a 5:1 compression ratio.

Here is a selection from the link at:

http://graphics.lcs.mit.edu/~tbuehler/video/dv.html

What is DV?

There are three tape formats that are known as DV formats: MiniDV, DVCAM, and DVCPRO. All three utilize the same compression method called DV25 (which is sometimes just referred to as DV compression)....

Muigleb
Nov 30, 2003, 12:27 PM
Originally posted by Trimix
have seen this thing about a year ago already - damn, forgot who makes it.


ViewSonic makes one, and as an additional comment i would like to say that PC users already have the option for both of these devices, people are mentioning, a tablet pc, or just a plain wireless monitor.

MattG
Nov 30, 2003, 12:42 PM
At first I didn't really think having an Apple tablet would be such a big deal, but really, it would be pretty cool. We're probably getting a Quicktime Streaming Server at the school I work at, and it'd be nice to administrate it remotely with a smaller-than-a-laptop sized device. Hmm :)

dongmin
Dec 1, 2003, 12:05 AM
Originally posted by Muigleb
ViewSonic makes one, and as an additional comment i would like to say that PC users already have the option for both of these devices, people are mentioning, a tablet pc, or just a plain wireless monitor. Sorry but there is no such a thing as a 'plain wireless monitor.' The Viewsonic products fall into one of three categories: fully-functional tablet PC, reduced-functionality tablet running Windows CE (i.e. a PDA with a large color screen), or a reduced-functionality Windows CE tablet connected to your PC via Remote Desktop. In all cases, there is a CPU, memory, graphics chip, some sort of internal storage (flash storage in the case of the Windows CE devices), and various ports. All are independent computers (or PDAs) that connect to your PC in different ways.

zync
Dec 1, 2003, 03:52 AM
Originally posted by dongmin
Sorry but there is no such a thing as a 'plain wireless monitor.' The Viewsonic products fall into one of three categories: fully-functional tablet PC, reduced-functionality tablet running Windows CE (i.e. a PDA with a large color screen), or a reduced-functionality Windows CE tablet connected to your PC via Remote Desktop. In all cases, there is a CPU, memory, graphics chip, some sort of internal storage (flash storage in the case of the Windows CE devices), and various ports. All are independent computers (or PDAs) that connect to your PC in different ways.

Yeah, I was thinking the same thing. I don't recall seeing anything that's just a "plain wireless monitor"...

Muigleb
Dec 2, 2003, 04:28 PM
Originally posted by dongmin
Sorry but there is no such a thing as a 'plain wireless monitor.' The Viewsonic products fall into one of three categories: fully-functional tablet PC, reduced-functionality tablet running Windows CE (i.e. a PDA with a large color screen), or a reduced-functionality Windows CE tablet connected to your PC via Remote Desktop. In all cases, there is a CPU, memory, graphics chip, some sort of internal storage (flash storage in the case of the Windows CE devices), and various ports. All are independent computers (or PDAs) that connect to your PC in different ways.

yes but your "reduced-functionality Windows CE tablet" will not work with out a computer since all computing functions are handeld on the mother computer. the main reason for haveing CE on the monitor is so that you dont have to transfer the overhead of the OS over wireless. yes it does have its own cpu and memory, but my original post was simply to show that the products that people were wanting do exist.

BagelTycoon
Dec 31, 2003, 10:06 PM
Originally posted by soosy
I think Steve Jobs is right that most people don't want to watch TV on their computers. What people do want is TiVo. Maybe I'm cheap, but when I first heard of TiVo I just thought why can't my computer do that? It already has a hard drive and all the other components.

The other thing I want is to route my mp3 collection to multiple speakers throughout the house.


Yeah, there is a real need for the abilty to wirelessly transmit to a mirrored or elongated monitor / TV / projection device.

For biz: Do an important Keynote or PowerPoint presentation, but 'Look Ma, no wires!'

That'll blow the socks off of clients

For fun: beam your DVD, iPhoto slideshow, iMovie, or Quicktime file to the TV (or better yet, a new 30" wireless Apple digital display?)

Folks were lining up over the holidays for mongo sized Plasama & LCD TV's -- none of which had a wireless capability.

Imagine the potential for Apple here. Someone's going to do it...the only questions are 1) who's going to do it 1st; and 2) who's going to do it best.

My money's on Apple

gooddog
Jan 29, 2004, 12:25 AM
Hi all ,

I too am waiting in frustration for the iMac G5.

MIGHT AS WELL TURN IT LOSE, Apple !

... 'CAUSE I AINT BUYING UNTIL YOU DO : )

With a hot G5 , it would need additional cooling.

I think too we will get the 23" HD Cinema display :
that's why those have been reduced in price --- and
to make way for the 30" stand alone display.

Can't have the same old 20" display for the next revolution , now can we ?

But this huge head requires a heavier base WITHOUT increasing the footprint .

Since the spherical form factor is best for the mobility of the swing arm, it will remain .

To combine all these requirements, we get :

(1) An additional "Southern Hemisphere" will
complete the round, add weight and space.
Still white -- NOT confused with Pro line.

(2) four cylindrical posts for legs that are
smoothly blended with the sphere - up to the
equator - to look like the lunar lander in the
film "2001 A Space Odyssey",

(3) an optional second drive ( slot )

(4) totally wireless except for power cord

(5) 23" HD Cinema head

(6) surround sound speakers option
(7) IEEE 802.15.3 for video and HD TV

(8) illuminated BT keyboard

(9) One-button mouse BT

Poised to Purchase,

Nawlins
Jan 30, 2004, 07:43 PM
I switched this past summer before I started college and have followed general tech issues for awhile. I have some different views than those mentioned on this thread.

I'd love to see future desktop Macs computers built around a large screen LCD or plasma screen television. Apple should design better wireless mice (they need to have 2 buttons, be shaped like normal mice - mice manufactured by Apple are the most uncomfortable devices I've ever used, and ideally, be rechargeable, instead of using batteries) and keyboards (to compete with Microsoft and Logitech's nice wireless keyboards) to help facilitate this process. I can imagine my living room someday with a large plasma screen television that can operate as my computer monitor for whatever supercharged Mac I'd have, and can simultaneously play cable or satellite television in the corner while using the computer (so computer screen and TV can be viewed at same time). This way, I could listen to music on my surround sound system in that same room while muting the television, or watch television or DVDs on the large screen TV with the surround sound system. My future living room would also have a TiVo with a much bigger hard drive than current versions, so I could digitally record television program. But it should be integrated to the DVD burner (again, much faster than current speeds, to make everything easier) on my future Mac, so I could burn TV shows to DVD when I want to, and not when they're released on DVD in stores. I'm fairly sure DVD burners in computers can't burn digital video from devices like TiVo or ReplayTV, but I hope that is possible someday.

Plus, imagine gaming from a LA-Z-Boy using a huge plasma display with a wireless mouse and keyboard.

I'm a freshman in college, so I'm optimistic the prices of large plasma screen televisions will come down quite a bit by the time I'm out of school.

reedm007
Jan 30, 2004, 08:10 PM
That's definitely an interesting perspective, although I think I tend to disagree with most of your ideas.

Originally posted by Nawlins
Apple should design better wireless mice (they need to have 2 buttons, be shaped like normal mice - mice manufactured by Apple are the most uncomfortable devices I've ever used, and ideally, be rechargeable, instead of using batteries) and keyboards (to compete with Microsoft and Logitech's nice wireless keyboards) to help facilitate this process.[/b]

First of all, I agree Apple's wireless mouse isn't exactly what I want, and outside of frequency hopping (which, admittedly, is very cool), I don't envision buying these devices... especially without rechargable batteries.

But I disagree with you point on comfortability. I can't stand MS's mice; their "ergonomic" design really aggravates my carpal tunnel symptoms, and I'm always accidentally clicking side buttons and going back/forward in web pages. After about 2 months, I finally gave in and got a 2-button Logitech right/left-handed mouse. It feels solid and moves smoothly; it reminds me the most of Apple's mice frankly, but with the features I want: scroll wheel and two buttons. But I've always found Apple's to be ergonomically some of the best mice around. (Well... outside of Mr. Hockey Puck :) )

I can imagine my living room someday with a large plasma screen television that can operate as my computer monitor for whatever supercharged Mac I'd have

And here's where you lose me entirely. I just don't see why you'd ever want this. Have you ever used WebTV? Have you ever felt like sitting 10 feet from your computer screen? (even if it is a plasma -- they're not actually all that crisp, pixel by pixel) Why would you want this? Computer use is active, engaging, and requires constant attention. TV watching is passive and provides entertainment while doing very little on your part. New products like ReplayTV/TiVO (PVRs) are great, because they functionally get out of your way and let you focus on the main goal of TV: watching TV!

Putting your computer on your TV just seems silly to me, provding litle to no benefits, and possibly even stepping backwards.

Let's look at it this way: in my apartment, we have 4 people who live here and one TV. People often want to watch TV, but nobody wants to sit around while one of us uses the computer. So either we all start getting plasma displays in our bedrooms and moving our chairs way back from the wall (to say nothing of cost!), or we'd all sit around the TV in the living room watching me check my email with a small TV image in the corner. Doesn't seem to make a lot of sense.

How about writing a paper? Designing a web site? None of these seem to make any sense on a plasma display attached to a computer. In fact, the only things that do make sense potentially, are related to media -- video editing, and music. But it still seems a sync solution, whereby you can watch movies from your computer on the plasma TV in the other room, or listen to your MP3s remotely, is a much more attractive solution than putting the computer itself in the room...

But it should be integrated to the DVD burner (again, much faster than current speeds, to make everything easier)

Making things faster doesn't imply easier :)

I'm fairly sure DVD burners in computers can't burn digital video from devices like TiVo or ReplayTV, but I hope that is possible someday.

This is actually possible today with ReplayTV, not TiVO though. Using DVArchive, ReplayTV (at no extra cost) can be networked with your computer, and you can stream recorded TV shows back and forth between the two devices, archive shows on your Mac, play those back remotely on the ReplayTV, etc. You can use some great tools called rtv that allow you to convert these ReplayTV MPEG2 files directly into standard DVD MPEG2 files, and then DVD Studio Pro or iDVD or Toast will burn them straight up. Pretty snazzy :) I do it most days. (Plus, ReplayTV automatically has "commercial advance", so burning movies or TV shows is simple to burn without any advertising...)

Plus, imagine gaming from a LA-Z-Boy using a huge plasma display with a wireless mouse and keyboard.

NOW you're talking :) But, I'm afraid specialized consoles (Xbox, Playstation, Nintendo GameCube) seem to make more sense here to me, and are already built to work on TVs and would work on a Plasma as it stands...

I'm a freshman in college, so I'm optimistic the prices of large plasma screen televisions will come down quite a bit by the time I'm out of school.

You're probably right, but I'm not sure you'll see the Mac of your dreams in the living room :)

Cheers!

ReeD.

gooddog
Jan 31, 2004, 02:41 AM
[QUOTE]Originally posted by reedm007

And here's where you lose me entirely. I just don't see why you'd ever want this. Have you ever used WebTV? Have you ever felt like sitting 10 feet from your computer screen? (even if it is a plasma -- they're not actually all that crisp, pixel by pixel) Why would you want this? Computer use is active, engaging, and requires constant attention. TV watching is passive and provides entertainment while doing very little on your part. New products like ReplayTV/TiVO (PVRs) are great, because they functionally get out of your way and let you focus on the main goal of TV: watching TV!

Putting your computer on your TV just seems silly to me, provding litle to no benefits, and possibly even stepping backwards.

Let's look at it this way: in my apartment, we have 4 people who live here and one TV. People often want to watch TV, but nobody wants to sit around while one of us uses the computer. So either we all start getting plasma displays in our bedrooms and moving our chairs way back from the wall (to say nothing of cost!), or we'd all sit around the TV in the living room watching me check my email with a small TV image in the corner. Doesn't seem to make a lot of sense.

How about writing a paper? Designing a web site? None of these seem to make any sense on a plasma display attached to a computer. In fact, the only things that do make sense potentially, are related to media -- video editing, and music. But it still seems a sync solution, whereby you can watch movies from your computer on the plasma TV in the other room, or listen to your MP3s remotely, is a much more attractive solution than putting the computer itself in the room...

---------------------------

Don't compute on a TV tube.

Instead, watch TV on a computer monitor.

So much for the resolution problem.

I don't have a plasma , but I hook my iBook up to $1,000 Toshiba projector and project it 5ft X 5ft , on a white wall, 9 feet away ( Sherwin Williams Luminous White Flat Latex super paint $35/gal. ).

The image is AWESOME and every bit like the iBook's screen only brighter and huge.
Pixelation is NOT visible.

A cube transition can have you blowing chunks if it is done too fast.

But the NASA 3-D Mars pics now on the web are to die for :)

I have no trouble working with this ; it is much more fun to design Keynote lessons and documents.

The iTunes visualizer with Pink Floyd running is ..... well, like,
mellow AND intense if you can dig behind a groove like that !

What a college student or single apartment dweller does NOT need is to pay for two large LCD's : one for fun , and one for work.

********IT'S THE MOUNT***********

Maybe if a great ( A-p-p-l-e brand ) wall mount were marketed that would fold invisible & flat against the wall , and swing out&down on scissor-like struts, then tilt down & sideways so that one could share with guests as well as "hunker" with one's homework, the Jobsian TV vs. MONITOR distinction would disappear.

Afterall, if it is too big, just size the window down to suit you.

Some people live with several others and need multiple screens.

But others ( college, singles, retired, divorced, etc. ) don't have to fight over the screen --- they worry about footing the $$$$ , on one paycheck , for more than one luxury item like a large screen.

*********************************

Also, with my FORMAC brand TV Studio , I plan to incorporate both my TV watching, my recording and VHS to DVD transfers , and my editing out commercials in iMovie, and time shifting, etc. and my computing work into one 20 " iMac screen --- sometimes I will open a small window on my work space to watch TV as I work. At other times, I will just do one or the other on FULL SCREEN.

And with an easy dual head hack to the iMac, I can have that much more acreage and versatility.

Eventually, FORMAC will go HD 1080p and that will end all questions once and for all.

Let's get past the past and move on to the
... you know ... well whatever.


---gooddog

lajocaab
Feb 9, 2004, 09:20 PM
The technology is available to provide consumers with a product like "iSlate". Of course only Apple could really do it right, although several other companies are attempting to create some variation of this device. Unfortunately many are too focused on video playback only, & not creating a true multi-function device that could be used at home, at the office, or on the road. This product would integrate well into the "Digital Lifestyle" philosophy & compliment existing Apple product. It would provide a screen large enough to actually watch video & view photos, while still being small enough to be portable. It needs to be smaller than a notebook computer, but larger than a PDA. Granted, you can not but a device the size of a DVD case in your pocket, but something doesn't have to fit in a pocket to be portable. This device could be used in so many different situations that if would have broad appeal in the market. I only pray that Apple is working on such a device & will release it in 2004. They have an opportunity to impact the industry with the iSlate & iVideo media Store as much as the iPod & iTMS will.

iSlate

New Apple mini-tablet –> PMA (portable media appliance)

Designed not to be a creative device like a desktop or laptop, but rather a sophisticated display device that communicates seamlessly with other devices via Rendezvous & 802.11, BT, FireWire, etc.


Device Size:
8” x 5.0” x .65” (±15oz)
± 1/2 size of a 17” PowerBook
± 2x size of a Palm T3 or an iPod
± size of a DVD movie case
small enough to hold with one hand by the bezel (.5” bezel on the sides)

Screen:
±8” LCD (16:9 ratio) -> 800 x 480 pixels minimum (1024 x 600 ideally)
± 1/2 size of 17” PowerBook screen
± 2x size of a Palm T3 screen
able to display “640 x 480 material” & DVD (720x480) quality video natively

Battery:
6-9 hr. Li-Ion battery (or some new battery technology)

Storage:
1.8” 20GB or 40GB Toshiba hard drive (additional capacity can come from external devices)
128MB or 256MB RAM - fixed
CF slot (w/ adapter for SD, xD, Smart Media, Memory stick)

Processor & OS ?:
Motorola 800 MHz G4 mobile w/ Mac OS X lite or
Intel 400 MHz XScale PXA263 w/ Palm OS 6 or Mac OS Mobile?

Connectivity:
802.11 –> Desktop or Laptop, Stereo, Internet via Wi-Fi hotspots
Bluetooth –> Keyboard, Mouse, PDA, Wireless Headphones, Internet via GSM Phone
FireWire –> iPod, Computer, Hard Drive, DVD/CD writer, Video Camera, iSight
USB 2.0 –> Printer, PDA, Digital Still Camera
mini-DVI w/adapter for:
-> ADC & VGA for larger monitor
-> DVI for video projector or HDTV
-> S-Video for video projector or TV
-> Composite for video projector or TV
Stereo mini out
Stereo mini in
Rendezvous for seamless connectivity to other devices

Input:
Inkwell via touch screen &/or stylus
Keyboard & mouse via Bluetooth or USB
Microphone
Remote control via Bluetooth

Applications:
inkwell, iPhoto, iTunes, iMovie, Safari, QuickTime, iSync, Rendezvous
Preview or Acrobat Reader, Mail, iCal, Address Book, Sherlock, iChat AV
Keynote, FileMaker, Quicken,

A/V Formats:
Pixlet, MPEG-4, MPEG-2, MPEG-1, AAC, MP3, WAV, AIFF, Audible, JPEG, TIFF, GIF

Accessories:
Charger, External Battery, Stand, clip for iSight, Portable folding BT keyboard, BT mouse
Headphone w/Microphone boom, quality stereo headphones

Price ??:
$699 to $899

Create a device that is bigger that the largest PDA or Archos type device, yet smaller than the average notebook or tablet computer. Imagine if you will, holding a device (about the size of a DVD case) away from you anywhere from 12" to 18". Obviously a 4" screen would be inadequate, but a 7" to 9" diagonal widescreen would be more than acceptable. It could still be small enough to fit in a stack of books, a briefcase, a large purse, of any number of other carrying cases. It would be something that could be viewed in an office, at home, in a coffee shop, on an airplane or train, or even in the backseat of a car.

The idea is not to see how much visual information one can cram into a small space (3" to 4" screens) or replace existing devices like the TV or Video Projector. The idea is to create a device that is a reasonable compromise between portability & "acceptable or pleasurable" viewing for multiple applications & that also complements existing devices.

Although a 4 lb, 12" notebook computer displays video beautifully (I use one everyday), it is too big for the situations I have described. Beyond the innumerable business applications it could fulfill, it could display video & photos on a screen that is much bigger than an Archos type device or PDA, & yet smaller than a notebook computer. It doesn’t need to carry everything all the time, so it doesn’t require a massive hard drive. The internal HD needs only to be large enough for the OS, applications & enough storage to carry material while you away from any connectivity to other devices or the internet.

From a strictly “video perspective”, a large part of its success would hinge upon Apple's ability to distribute video clips through an online store much like iTMS. This store could provide educational content, business content, news content, & entertainment content beyond just movies. To be truly successful, it must integrate into Apple's "Digital Lifestyle" strategy, & be truly portable (ubiquitous wireless connectivity & good battery life).

ingenious
Feb 19, 2004, 08:07 PM
I agree with the photoshopped mockups and the imac poster.

It should be a computer that you can take with you that still functions as a computer at a desk (i.e. docking station), but is still a computer when its disconnected. Also, to make it successful, you'd need to make it be able to turn into a TV to play DVD, hence the idea of a Wintel Tab that has the flip around keyboard.



It sounds like a Wintel copy and a waste of money if you ask me. If you wanted a *great* TV, buy a TV or an iBook. (You'd waste a PowerBook if you j wanted a TV.)

ingenious
Feb 19, 2004, 08:15 PM
Ok, now the only think that would be viable i think is a PB (g5 of course :D) with a screen that went all the way around, instead of just leaning back how ever many degrees. That way it'd be true computer that could be use for other things. What about stylus entry? To me, that'd get annoying like those cheap screen tinting things or w/e they are,

ratspg
Feb 19, 2004, 08:52 PM
This seems pointless.. not an 'amazing' addition the Digital Hub, I doubt they'll do it.