View Full Version : Apple PDA/Digital Devices?

May 24, 2002, 09:16 PM
PowerPage posts (http://www.powerpage.org/story.lasso?newsID=9389) a story about various handheld devices seen around Apple's campus:

The devices have been field tested by various staff members over the past few months. It is important to realize that these aren't simply re-badged Palms or Palms with silly clear enclosures - they are real Apple iron.

MacOS Rumors (http://www.macosrumors.com) also has a story regarding upcoming Digital Lifestyle devices which is very vague:

New information is also becoming available through the grapevine about Apple's next Digital Lifestyle device. There are at least five different such projects underway at Apple right now, up to three of which could ship this summer, so there's plenty of uncertainty to go around...

King Cobra
May 24, 2002, 09:21 PM
Oh, no!

Another PDA thread! The same one mcrain brought up!

eyelikeart must be having nightmares right now! :eek:

Now I know that it is arn's duty to report this type of thing, but why can't these rumor sites simply end reports of some unconfirmed PDA make up? There is no proof whatsoever of Apple making a PDA-like device; as far as I can tell, it's mostly rumors, or some fake pictures.

I feel for you, man! :)

Fear the King.

May 24, 2002, 10:23 PM
As long as it looks nothing like the iWalk, and Spymac doesn't try to take credit for it, I'll be happy. :rolleyes:

May 24, 2002, 10:58 PM
Don't tell me I'll have to wait, again, to get a new PDA...just so I could see what Apple might unveil!!!!

May 24, 2002, 11:02 PM
LOL :D Man, eye is going to be pissed!

Let's start an OS X on x86 discussion while we're at it... :D

Rafael Perini
May 25, 2002, 12:53 AM
Its the same thing over and over and over... few months before any Mac World and here comes rumors of PDA, G5, TV, webradio and so on... come on ppl!!!!!! Bring us real news!!! Don't sit in your computer and make up new configurations and stuff... do something better....

By the way, macrumors used to have their own information, nowadays is just a collection of rumors from other sites (even SpyMac!!!)


May 25, 2002, 12:53 AM
There are at least five different such projects underway at Apple right now, up to three of which could ship this summer, so there's plenty of uncertainty to go around...

I love how they sound so confident throwing around numbers. Yeah, like that makes their rumors seem any more plausible...

May 25, 2002, 01:23 AM
Whether it is a PDA, or some other device, I am confident that the iPod was not the only non computer device to be coming out of Cupertino this year. PDA? nOt likely considering the waning interest in them, but maybe an uber pda tablet device? Apple hopefully will surprise us with something truly new.

May 25, 2002, 09:34 AM
I still maintain that Apple (Jobs) didn't reinstate "Inkwell" (the Newton handwriting engine - which is still better than anything since) for nothing. For graphics professionals who happen to be using Wacom tablets to avoid using the keyboard!?! C'mon - that's a ruse; it's groundwork for a future device.

May 25, 2002, 10:24 AM
i think that sometime down the road apple will be making a new pda.. its just a matter of when...

i mean, in the past, rumors that have lasted THIS long usually end up coming true...

im not neccassarily saying that the spymac stuff was true.. in fact, no one has ever registered the trademark iWalk... and plus, if you think about it.. iWalk is a pretty weird name for such a device. all previous apple stuff has had names that arent too pertininent to the device... wahatver...

May 25, 2002, 10:27 AM
Originally posted by AudiA4
I still maintain that Apple (Jobs) didn't reinstate "Inkwell" (the Newton handwriting engine - which is still better than anything since) for nothing. For graphics professionals who happen to be using Wacom tablets to avoid using the keyboard!?! C'mon - that's a ruse; it's groundwork for a future device.

I suppose you think that the voice-recognition in OS X is a ruse, groundwork for a new mobile phone from apple?

Really, apple executives may bend the truth, play numbers games, whathaveyou, but a frank statement such as "there will be no apple PDA" is pretty clear.

May 25, 2002, 12:42 PM
Inkwell surely indicates an OS X based tablet device on the horizon.

Apple has already said NO to PDAs, but YES to entertainment devices like iPod.

I suspect the new device will be some kind of tablet device that works on it's own, or with an iMac. You can use to watch DVDs on the move and surf the Web from your couch or bed.

It might also be handy for using to administrate a whole bunch of XServes, and could have a wide variety of commercial applications in specific vertical sectors like education, logistics, retail and medical.

May 25, 2002, 02:59 PM
Originally posted by firewire2001
i mean, in the past, rumors that have lasted THIS long usually end up coming true...

Oh my god, this means Apple really is merging with Disney!!

May 25, 2002, 03:28 PM
Oh my god, this means Apple really is merging with Disney!!

uh.. i can say ive even HEARD of that one.. :p

King Cobra
May 25, 2002, 04:42 PM
Apple teaming up with Disney?

HFS! Wait...

I can see it now. :)

May 25, 2002, 06:43 PM
I gotta agree, I can't see any possible reason to put handwriting recognition into an OS unless you're goign to be building a device that runs the OS that will be very dependant on it. I'm leaning towards a tablet myself... it technically *won't* be a PDA ;)
Apple hardware still too expensive? How about a raffle ticket? (http://www.macraffle.com/index.php?aff_id=144)

May 25, 2002, 07:43 PM
Go to checkout, and what do you have? A card reader with an Aqua interface that you use a stylus to enter your signature in.

May 25, 2002, 07:59 PM
Originally posted by britboy

I suppose you think that the voice-recognition in OS X is a ruse, groundwork for a new mobile phone from apple?

Really, apple executives may bend the truth, play numbers games, whathaveyou, but a frank statement such as "there will be no apple PDA" is pretty clear.

I didn't say that it would be a PDA; I said "...a future device." I would wager that it would be a keyboard-less notebook - i.e. a "tablet" device. Either a wireless extension of a desktop or a true portable device.

However, regarding your PDA position, I believe that Apple said the following:

"...gee, now that's quite a tough market to be in right now." - Jobs
"...well, we had heated internal debates about a PDA..." (iPad discussion).

Aside from the fact that these fall way short of "there will be no Apple PDA." as you stated, I wouldn't characterize Steve Jobs as the most forthcoming (honest?) person; particularly with respect to future products.

May 25, 2002, 11:34 PM
Another thign to consider is that "PDA" is sort of coming to mean fancy electronic organizer. If Apple were to put out any sort of handheld computing device, it would almost certainly have multimedia and communicator abilities. And according to many, that would be out of PDA territory.

I'm not saying that this is any proof at all. But you have to pay attention to how Apple and Steve frame their replies. They will almost always leave themselves wiggle room (the same goes for most corporate communcations).

May 26, 2002, 10:16 PM
I cant believe that the bloody iWok is rearing its phoney head again!
There is no profit in a stand-alone PDA for Apple.
The possibilities that have shown themselves with the iPod are a good discussion point, however.

A device that needs an Apple computer is a smart move. The iPod needs a Mac; so if Steve has any sense, he may come up with a 'device' that behaves like a PDA in some way, but needs a Mac to make it go.
That all fits in with the digital hub.
And it works so far, doesnt it?

So the small production runs and the low price (kind of) of a PDA-type of device is mitigated because it always involves a Mac.
Therefore, new purchases of computers in a market which is somewhat stagnant at the moment.
This may turn out to be a brilliant move by Apple; so I am a believer in a new 'device', but it wont be a simple Apple palm thingy, and it will require the ownership of a Mac.

Which brings me back to the notion of the iPod on windoze - whats the point?

Of course, OSX on Intel is also pointless when set against the digital hub Mac concept.

WOW! I think I get it! Its all about owning a Mac!

May 27, 2002, 03:05 AM
I'm with you on the device, elgruga, but don't knock OS X on Intel... but's that's for another thread. ;)

May 27, 2002, 06:07 AM
Originally posted by gopher
Go to checkout, and what do you have? A card reader with an Aqua interface that you use a stylus to enter your signature in.
Um, that's about 20 years old, sorry.

MasterX (OSiX)
May 27, 2002, 06:21 PM
Originally posted by elgruga
A device that needs an Apple computer is a smart move. The iPod needs a Mac; so if Steve has any sense, he may come up with a 'device' that behaves like a PDA in some way, but needs a Mac to make it go.
That all fits in with the digital hub.
And it works so far, doesnt it?

Apple has always innovated and integrated. Starting with OS 8 i'd say. Anyway, apple's entire future thinking strategy is predicting where the market it going. It's painfully obvious to me that the future lies in simplicity on computers, not complexity. Why do you think the iPod has 1 wire and works seamlessly on top of an already *flawless* system (iTunes). If apple was to continue their digital hub themeselves (which they will oc) they will do it by looking at what Apple users want for their mac that they have/want and invent it. Notice that Apple stopped using the Rio600 in the diagram for the digital hub? Well expect that to happen to the whole thing soon enough. As for this rumor, I do expect apple to make some sort of tablet, a semi-portable one (7"+ color LCD) that has a few unique functions. Apple knows that a $30 digital organizer with an Apple logo won't sell, so they'll find ways to make it kick butt. Palm leverages the factor of expandability and application expansion. Pocket PC more so, plus the video and conferencing features. Apple would need to expand on both, offering a VERY powerful device, that looks and feels confortable to a mac user, and would have new functions. I have little doubt it'll be a MacOS X only deal. Integrating with iTunes/your home folder's music folder to hold a few MP3s (unless it has a slim HD), movies from your movies folder, pictures from iPhoto/pictures, and your contacts list from Address Book. My though it that it would also integrate with your iTools account, allowing you to download/upload files. Thus allowing you to update web pages with HTML code, QT Movies, or even add info to a Xserve's Internet-Java app or database. I also beleive the device would have internet through high speed short range and low speed long range standard, even though you'd have to pay for the long range. I also expect the device would stream QT Movies from a QTSS/Quicktime Broadcaster server. A lot of this is obviously personal speculation, but it's nothing outrageous given the iPod and PocketPC's functions NOW, and Apple's habbits of internet gung-ho. One last thought is to really help bolster sales, it'd come with a portable version of the Xserve remote monitor app. Thus allowing you IT/sys admin folk to check updates on your server farm from afar, and as your in the server room (if it was THAT big). Take it or leave it, my 2c.

May 27, 2002, 06:35 PM
Originally posted by britboy

I suppose you think that the voice-recognition in OS X is a ruse, groundwork for a new mobile phone from apple?

Really, apple executives may bend the truth, play numbers games, whathaveyou, but a frank statement such as "there will be no apple PDA" is pretty clear.

Of cause they will not have a PDA, it will be something like iGO or iPad. ;)

May 27, 2002, 06:53 PM
For years I've watched laptop and PDA users when they've actually had a chance to use their systems (eg meetings, classes, presentations, etc.). In most cases, they always had a pad of paper with them to actually do stuff (and the laptops and PDAs to avoid getting bored). That's why I think a superior tablet device will be the next big thing in computers and will re-invigorate that market.

I would like to see a tablet that operates both as a standalone device and that integrates seamlessly with a Mac. Rather than an expensive touch-sensitive LCD display, I'd rather see a high resolution, non-touch-sensitive display that uses a Bluetooth pen (ala www.anoto.com, but without the requirement of Anoto paper ... I have faith in Apple's engineering talent) for input via Inkwell to the tablet or, when in range of my G4 digital hub, use the tablet as a portable display (Timbuktu via Airport?) with the pen as a mouse for input (perhaps even a virtual keyboard, through a molded plastic+circuitry overlay to the display that works via Bluetooth).

I'm not wedded to Bluetooth, but I think it's necesary for this tablet to be PC-compatible. The goal is not OS X on Intel. The goal is to provide a digital hub device that PC users can add on to their existing systems, that offers them enough functionality to be useful to them (but not as much as when connected to a Mac), AND which gives them a chance to see how much better OS X is so that, when they upgrade/buy a new computer, it will be a Mac. They've shown reluctance to completely switch, but htis offers them a chance to try it out first and - I'm sure - fall in love with it.

Besides, I'd much prefer to have an OS X tablet interface to the PeeCee I'm given at work and school. If the tablet helps me to move around between these environments, sharing files, connecting to whatever network is available, letting me do the things I need to do in my life ... then I would happily buy ones for my family.

Think Realistically, Steve! People don't show off their pretty CPU box more than a couple of times ... it's the day-to-day functionality that we need and Apple is th best bet to provide it ...

Silver Dragon
May 27, 2002, 08:09 PM
Will Apple release a PDA? No. Does Apple already have the Newton 3? Yes, and Disney is using it. What if the devices people are seeing are new prototypes for Disney, and only Disney, just like the current Apple PDAs? Apple is *not* a B-C only company, they do a lot more B-B than people think.

Now all that being said, I'm a little upset at Apple. Look at all the people going ga ga over the IDEA of an Apple PDA. Mac users, PC users, anyone who has heard of Apple wants a PDA. Personally, when I turn on my Newton 2100 every morning I just hope that Apple will surprise me and release a new Newton 3000. I think even John C Dvorak wants Apple to release a PDA!! With all these people screaming for Apple to give them a PDA, why don't they deliver? Use some of the millions that they pumped into the Newton project to create the ultimate PDA. Make sure it only works with Macintosh to try and drive PC users to the Mac. This has the potential to be a real money maker for Apple, and could increase their market share more than 'ol Steve can imagine.

Oh well, I have come to terms with Apple not releasing a new PDA. It upsets me greatly and I don't like the idea, but I'm 99% sure it's true. bad move by Apple, but throughout history Apple has been known for bad moves like this.

Just my $0.02. Some of my facts may be wrong, so please don't take this as gospel.


May 27, 2002, 08:24 PM
Doubtless Mac could produce an extremely sophisticated and versatile handheld computer which could almost function as a replacement for a laptop, and which would be a very ‘high end’ PDA.

But a handheld doesn't have to be a PDA and I’m not convinced that there’s much point in Apple making a PDA, however cool looking it might be. Nor does Apple need a product which would directly compete with the iBook and TiBook.

If you want to predict what an Apple handheld might be, maybe you need to Think Different. And that rules out another electronic rolodex and diary, which would be like most existing PDAs.

If you look at the iPod, maybe it offers further clues – a device with no real autonomous functionality, completely reliant on the user having a Mac laptop or desktop. A real world replacement for existing technology alternatives (the Walkman) which are already popular and accepted. At the end of the day the iPod is an Apple computer-reliant music player.

I’d see a potentially huge market a firewire based note-pad, broadly equivalent to the iPod, but with text files rather than MP3 music tracks.

This would be a device which would take what you scribble on it, convert it to simple text and then later squirt it down the firewire cable into a new application on your computer (let’s call it 'iNotes'), from where you could then export it into an e-mail, or MS word, or Works, or Quark, or Publisher, or Entourage, or whatever. You should also be able to import MS word and simple text documents into 'iNotes' to then be worked on, added to or edited using the device - perhaps as you commute to work on a crowded train. Maybe you could have a facility to draw pictures or graphs on it which would be stored as GIFs, maybe not. Maybe you could use it to read e-books, maybe not. Maybe you could have some facility for linking to a phone so that you could send SMS text messages or even eMails, maybe not. Perhaps Bluetooth would help here? Maybe (like the iPod) it could double as a hard drive? Crucially, because nothing like it exists, it would be a powerful reason for buying a Mac rather than a PC, just as the iPod is. And it would replace a real world existing technology alternative – the paper notebook!!

Who'd use it? Journos, secretaries, teachers, doctors, even school kids. (Even my wife, doing the shopping list!). In short anyone who ever has to write a note on a piece of paper, a notebook, or an exercise book and then work with that data on a computer.

It would have to have great natural handwriting recognition, since using graffiti makes the Palms unuseable for any more than 'single sentence notes'. It wouldn’t need and shouldn’t have a diary, an address book, or a calculator. It should have no extraneous ************* at all. It would just be an electronic jotter and it would be cheap enough to be a must-have.

It would have to be light, cheap, and portable, yet with a big enough screen and writing area to be useful. It would have to be small enough to be carried anywhere, in a big pocket. It would be like a thin Newton, perhaps, and probably with a separate screen and writing area.

Who here wouldn't buy such a device?

May 27, 2002, 10:04 PM
Originally posted by Matt_d

Of corse they will not have a PDA, it will be something like iGO or iPad. ;)

iGo - eh? That's definetly a new one. I suppose that they will be releasing an iYield and an iStop shortly after that, right? :D (I mean that in the respects of a stop sign.)


May 28, 2002, 06:31 AM
I would like to see an Apple PDA, I am suprised eye has not come into this thread. I thought Steve siad no PDA, hmm throwing us off?

May 28, 2002, 08:45 AM
I just find it interesting that on the same subject I was shot down on, it could possibly be something in the woodwork...
I will probably get shot down again, and again, and again! But that is alright. Time will tell this story, whether it is for the good or bad, right or wrong...

Silver Dragon
May 28, 2002, 08:54 AM
Originally posted by gopher
Go to checkout, and what do you have? A card reader with an Aqua interface that you use a stylus to enter your signature in.

These devices are not running any version of OS X. All they did was skin the interface. There is no handwriting recognition on the iPOS, it just capture your signature and attaches it to the credit card sale.


May 28, 2002, 12:09 PM
Entertainment on a Palm?? hahahahahaha!!! how fast is that DivX movie going to run on your uber 66mhz 68k Palm!!!
HAHAHAHA, what we need are apple pocketpcs :)) 400mhz Xscale and such, or... are they going to use Palm OS 5, and an Xscale/Motorola MX1?? who knows!!! All i know is that i can already play 30fps 320x240x24bit DivX movies on my pocketpc full speed!! with SOUND!!!

May 28, 2002, 01:09 PM
Just FYI, the new Palm OS 5.0 is going to be a lot faster and the hardware architecture that will accompany this new software will be just as amazing. The hardware will be the new Dragonball processor capable of 200 mHz, and the Intel X-scale processor, which is also capable of 206 mHz. These processors will enable the palms the same abilities that your Pocket PC has; the palm will just handle it more effieciently, and simpler. And unlike M$'s approach to handheld technology, applications written before Palm OS 5.0 will be compatible with it(although there is the possibility certain apps won't work, but for the most part applications will work, or will just need to be recompiled with minimal adjustment) Lastly, the palm will come with 64 mb of ram and 32 for the OS. Since we all know palm apps are much smaller,this is more than enough for most people. And for the more ambitious person, there is also the possibility of using the SD cards from panasonic that are on current palm models.

May 28, 2002, 04:18 PM
I want Apple to make a PDA very much; however, I already bought an iPod. I'd imagine that if apple made a PDA it would be revolutionary and would be able to play music and be a 10gig hd. What about the ipods? I already spent 500$$ on one. If they make a PDA then what am i gonna do with it?

Silver Dragon
May 28, 2002, 04:24 PM
Don't worry Cable, Apple is *not* releasing a PDA. You can enjoy your iPod for quite some time.

May 28, 2002, 06:07 PM
I've been on Apple's campus many times and I can assure you nothing even remotely resembling beta or "test" hardware EVER appears in public-accessable parts of R&D 1.


There may be a terminal device similar to M$'s "Mira" project but it will by no stretch of the drug soaked imagination be a PDA.

Get over it quickly newbies.:rolleyes:

May 28, 2002, 06:44 PM

You speak with such authority, and make me (a mere newbie) respect your considerable expertise and knowledge. Or would do if only you could spell
1) Excrement
2) counsellor
3) Anonymous
or 4) Haemorrhoids (or if you spell colour wrongly, as color, then Hemorrhoids would do)

Get over the arrogant and infantile abuse quickly, Neanderthal!:D

May 28, 2002, 07:24 PM
Both spellings are acceptable.

And you missed "accessible".

Jack'- Good luck trying to enforce strict grammar and spelling on these boards. I've been here long enough to stop worrying about it.

MasterX (OSiX)
May 28, 2002, 08:14 PM
Yes, you can really tell who uses OmniWeb, and who uses IE5.1-X here.

Posters using OmniWeb will get it....

May 28, 2002, 08:17 PM
Originally posted by Jackonicko

Who here wouldn't buy such a device?

I would. Sounds like a great device. I expect something like this.

May 28, 2002, 08:21 PM
Originally posted by MasterX (OSiX)
Yes, you can really tell who uses OmniWeb, and who uses IE5.1-X here.

Posters using OmniWeb will get it....

OmniWeb's for wimps! :p

I don't use it...all those spelling bees I participated in as a child warped my brain.

I still make the occasional typographical error, though. ;)

MasterX (OSiX)
May 28, 2002, 08:24 PM
If we see an Apple "PDA" it'll be one of two things:

1) Uber simple screen, for remote eMail, Web, and text (might need to be within range of mac, maybe not)

2) Super '**** your pants' power 'pda' which kicks so much ass it's sad. 350Mhz ARM2 CPU, with additional tasks to accelerate 'Quartz Lite' making an Aqua-style portable OS. But unlike PocketPC OS (WinCE is Win Pocket now? I dont even pretend to remember) Apple wouldn't chop off the start bar and call it an OS. It'd probably use the farmilliar 'buttons' that Palm OS has (buttons for fast use apps) and a scroll wheel in the center. But apple would be smart enough to add in a dock instead of the writing space/function buttons in Palms, then use that space for a fixed-height dock. I'd bet it'd have slots, instead of variable size in OSX (say 8 slots). The thing would definatly use InkWell handwriting recog system, and if they were OH SO DARING, voice commands/notation. THAT would be a feature. I'd like to see a no-screen PDA, i think apple could pull it off, you'd have to work it all by voice, and it'd speak back to you? NAH, oh well just an idea. ANYWAY, i think the voice feature is a real idea, even if it just has voice recording, then you could add a name, to listen to it later. I think streaming off QTSS/QuickTime Broadcaster is a MUST, so it'd have some kind of internet connection. Ideally you could also play a wide variety of other QT6 formats, esp QT Trailers, Sorrenson Video 1/2/3, MPEG4, and the QT STreaming formats.

Weather they go with the low-powered cheap Airport-tablet (call it the iTool) or some super PDA (i wish so bad) I'm sure Apple knows what they're doing, and eventually they'll get around to making a sub-laptop device. In the meantime a Super TiVO w/Superdrive will just have to do. Time will tell, see you at MWNY. 

MasterX (OSiX)
May 28, 2002, 08:26 PM
Originally posted by Rower_CPU

OmniWeb's for wimps! :p

I don't use it...all those spelling bees I participated in as a child warped my brain.

I still make the occasional typographical error, though. ;)

OmniWeb is for people with really fast DP G4s, which is why i have wimpered back to IE5 again, until Quartz Extreme at least :¬)

Didn't buy a $290 Radeon8500 for giggles and sh**s

May 29, 2002, 01:24 AM
hey everyone just think, the old newton with all new hardware, color, and a newton os somewhat like 10.1. I mean do any of you guys use a newton. THey work great, they are just big and old.

May 29, 2002, 04:09 AM

Just 'pissed' (in the English sense) and therefore more aggressive than usual, and wanting to burst his arrogant bubble. Who really cares about spellong after all?;)

May 29, 2002, 10:26 AM
Leave it to a drunken Brit to dodge hard facts over Typography and Syntax.

It's exactly that kind of idiocy that keeps me out of the Article section most of the time.

I will say this as plainly as I can: Steve Jobs will not lead Apple to develop a device credited to Scully, nor will he dedicate Apple resources to R&D for a doomed market.

PDA's are an "in" product with no long term future for innovation at any reasonable price point. The only major shift in store for the PDA is integration with G3 wireless devices as demonstrated in the Asia Pacific market. In addition, Apple's base market here in the US will not see G3 wireless soon enough or on a wide enough scale to justify entering that most precarious of markets.

BTW: Your credibility suffers more than mine for attacking my use of language while ignoring my points.:p :rolleyes:

May 29, 2002, 10:48 AM
um yeah... stuffed stuff with all this stuff stuff that you guys say be the stuff but sometimes its scary stuff.... :-D

May 29, 2002, 10:49 AM
Just thought this area needed a little demented humor... :)

May 29, 2002, 11:39 AM

Your proximity to Cupertino, nor thae amount of posts you have made have any bearing at all on your knowledge of future apple products, you know as little as the rest of us, and frankly seem a little short sighted. And you dont do your credibility any good by generalizing a nation to sooth your damaged ego, relax. I believe Jobs will develop a device and take credit for it, because it will include much more than what is available now. The PDA market is "doomed" id say stagnant, because there is no innovation right now, which is exactly what apple can give it just like they did the MP3 player market. I would have never bought an MP3 player previous to the iPod I never even thought about it, and I am sure many people felt the same way. The same thing will happen with an apple PDA it will not only push that market forward but introduce it to a new audience. This is my opinion, and I dont claim to know when.

May 29, 2002, 12:35 PM
... XScale runs at 400mhz with 1GHZ planned for next year. Palm OS with 32mb ROM?? WTF??? its only going to be 16mb ROM at MOST!! and 64mb RAM?? hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha, the new Sony NR has only 16mb RAM!! not to mention the boxy screen!! Palm isnt doing away with graffiti! they are keeping a 320x320 resolution,... sure thats more than PocketPC's, but its a box!!! but... you could run 320x240 on it in portriat...

I just want a Dual 1.4GHZ G4!!

May 29, 2002, 12:49 PM
You want to be careful with what you say about us Brits, or we'll set the Queen and her corgies on you!

May 29, 2002, 12:59 PM
Think of this for a min, I work as a computer retail sales man in western canada, in are store location we have computers leaving are department every hour worth 3000$ plus all the toys to go with them!!.

Over the past two years apple has gone from a lonely imac with dust to a full line up of apples from the small iPod to the 23" HD LCD. Apple has the touch if they want want to sell a PDA's i think they can do it, they just have to be careful about it, lets look at some PDA's for a moment and see what apple has to do to make a best seller.

Lets break this down into two groups the big boys and the little brats.

Little Brats: Palm handhelds like Sony Clea,Handspring Visor, and the Palm are all small PDA's great for keeping your address and numbers but lets face it they are too small to do much more then that, try doing a spreadsheet LOL

Big Boys: Windows CE devices like HP Jernoda, Compaq iPac, and Toshiba's new one, these PDA's have much faster CPU's and Larger screens and you can get by with spreadsheet on these PDA's, and listen to MP3's or watch a video.

So what do all these PDA's have in comen...They are all hard to use for the first time ever tried to setup the HOTSYNC on a PDA before, it's a pain, and want to install files and programs, good luck! some of them have cool add on's like GPS and Digital Camera's, And all of them can go wireless with a little TLC.

So what does apple need to make this years hot sellers, and maybe next year too.
Lets list them off

1) Easy to use and setup
2) Big Screen
3) Wireless
4) Excel and Word support
5) MP3
6) Memory Expansion "stock 64mb"
7) Extra Stuff "GPS, Digital Cam, etc.."
8) Address + Numbers
9) Games
10) Notes
11) HandWriting Reconiton!
12) Video Playback

If apple could make a PDA that could use all of this and more they would Take the market.

One of the most important items on the list is #7 people love toys and they will buy them, for and example...

the Sony clea is a hot seller it has great features at a fair price like 8mb of ram and expansion for more with MP3 playback it rocks but there is one major down side, to toys!! you cant even get a case for it yet!

If apple put out a PDA that had a a few expansion units to start it off they could really take the market.

GPS unit: that tells you your exact location on a map and can give you directions to were that broad meeting is at.

Digital camera: not just a 800X800 pixels image but a real digital camera like 4 megpaixels

Video Camera: something to use as a web cam and maybe a little more

Voice recorder: Very useful for forgetful types like me..what was i saying..

and much more..

all we have to do is Think Different! :)

Thanks for my 2 cents

May 29, 2002, 01:01 PM
I'm Canadian so my remarks about Brits are somewhat tongue in cheek. Although, among Commonwealth Nations Britain has the highest nitpicking-per-% BAC rating.

I still have yet to get an intelligent response to ANY of the points raised.

Saying Apple will enter the market just because it's stagnant and using iPod as an example is rather naive. iPod was less about Mp3 than it was about portability of Data.

If Apple introduces a machine smaller than a notebook it will be far more capable than the classification "PDA" really covers. I find it far more likely we'll see an iBook with touch screen and stylus.

May 29, 2002, 01:26 PM

You stated the belief that Apple would not make a PDA. You stated that belief strongly and forcefully, while rather rudely heaping scorn on those who disagree with you. You failed to give any evidence or even reasoning to support your contention. You fail to differentiate between current PDAs and the kind of device which I outlined.

Yoiu claimed a degree of inside knowledge which cannot be proved or disproved.

You subsequently insist (again with no reasoned argument or evidence) that the only possible advance for PDAs is G3 wireless compatability. Firewire connectivity and near automatic synchronisation may represent an equally compelling vision of the future, unless you can offer reasoned argument to the contrary.

You must expect to be teased rather than respected, because you fail to engage in reasoned debate, but instead choose to adopt an arrogant, superior and hectoring tone.

In view of the success of the iPod/iTunes and indeed of iPhoto in increasing the perceived value of iBooks, iMacs and Powerbooks as 'digital hubs' it is reasonable to expect Apple to consider any device which conforms to the digital hub strategy. The iPod could have been much more than a simple Mac dependant MP3 player and hard disc, but Apple quite deliberately made it part of the Apple hub infrastructure.

An all-singing all-dancing PDA would offer little that the Pocket PC or Journada don't already offer, and would threaten some Laptop sales. The kind of device which I outlined would be a must-have for many Mac users, would attract many others to the Mac platform, and would not threaten laptop sales.

Again, at a $250-450 price point who would NOT buy a pocket-sized, portable tool which allowed you to take notes which could simply be synched with applications on your Mac, or read e-books, or edit text documents?

May 29, 2002, 01:38 PM
I refrain from providing detailed arguements only because they have been stated, restated, quoted, footnoted and referred to so many times between myself and others who've been discussing this AT LENGTH for at least a YEAR that dredging them up again is a waste. If you really want to see the pros and cons of an Apple PDA then, please, GO LOOK IT UP.

My "Insider inferrences" are just the result of having hashed this out already countles times, having 2 close friends at Apple, working a stone's throw from Apple's main campus, selling Macs at a Mac-only retailer for a year and researching the hell out of the issue.

So I suppose you're right, an uppitty teenage geek like you may know better now that school's out for the summer so you can post all day. I suppose "The Key to Hades" is as good a place as Silicon Valley for examining the industry.

Do me a favor newbie and go get some fresh air.

May 29, 2002, 03:04 PM
OK, so you are a 25 year old architectural CAD draughtsman. In California. And you've been a sales assistant in a computer shop. And you have friends who work for Apple, who are presumably employed at the highest echelon. And you make assumptions as to who and what I am, with as little evidence for your conclusions as you use to support your dubious contentions.

Sorry to disappoint you, fella, but I'm neither a teenager nor a geek.

I am, however, old enough to be your Dad. I am also a full-time professional print and broadcast journalist. One of my colleagues has just got back from meeting and interviewing senior personnel at Apple. Friends from University days are now 41- and 42- year old senior execs and VPs throughout the industry (including Apple).

I'll be honest, I don't know what Apple will do next - final decisions are above the pay grade of people I know in the company. But I've had some hints.

But you've been hashing this out on an internet BB, so I bow to your superior credentials.

Simply stating a controversial position as though it were fact, and without supporting argument is a waste of everybody's time (however many times you may have argued about it before).

In the absence of any intelligent debate, feel free to continue tossing out half-baked and infantile abuse, but don't expect me to waste any more of my time responding. :p

MasterX (OSiX)
May 29, 2002, 03:10 PM
Originally posted by Jackonicko

The kind of device which I outlined would be a must-have for many Mac users, would attract many others to the Mac platform, and would not threaten laptop sales.

Again, at a $250-450 price point who would NOT buy a pocket-sized, portable tool which allowed you to take notes which could simply be synched with applications on your Mac, or read e-books, or edit text documents?

$250-450? First of all, when has Apple (Steve I mean) ever been know for making a bottom end offering (especially in an already bottomed-out market)? Second do you think people will go to Apple computers to spend another $150-$350 on their systems to add an iPad and iBook to replace their existing eMachine and m105? Think really hard, yes I might do it, hell just to get a real way to hot sync in OSX (stupid Palm Desktop higs CPU cycles). But I doubt others will. In the past MANY years Apple has focused on innovation and the highest quality. I mean look at the I/O and features on the iBook compared to any Sub $1000 PC laptop- 6hr batt, FW, 2 USB, buiolt-in wireless slot, built in CD, Radeon Mobility. Last time i checked pc laptops that cheap were still 800x600 LCDs with a 2hr batt, and no real HW 3D.

What i'm getting at is that apple *will* make another 'Newton'. The Newton was a 'freakin small laptop, it was hardly less powerful than the mac laptops at the time, and yet they did poorly in the market bc no one had any respect for Apple, and the PDA was a foregn concept. If they polished the size, OS, and features, then added a nice Hot-Sync and I/O i think it would do quite well. Imagine the thousands of people that would buy a PDA that really felt to them like a BETTER pen and paper. I think my voice recog idea would really bolster sales of such a thing. Of course it'll need movie and music playback, but apple is DEFINATLY smart enough not to invade on the iPod or the laptop space. Too bad the mac is so centric to the hub. I doubt we'll see much cross device sharing (no iPod to iPod firewire file sharing or address book sharing, no iPod to hold files/get music for an iPad, etc etc)

MasterX (OSiX)
May 29, 2002, 03:12 PM
Extra emphasis on it needing to beat pen and paper before apple releases it. :)

May 29, 2002, 03:39 PM

You want reasoned answers. I'll try to sum up what's been the trend in rumors, R&D and Steve's strange little world.

The Digital Lifestyle and Digital Hub are the products Apple is genuinely focussed on. This goes much farther than simply being a "Geek on the go". Apple's design team is quite aware of "Geek factor" and the fact that most people are conservative about their accessories. iPod was a test of the water for a more comprehensive approach to Data as a whole.

The Digital Lifestyle:

First: Apple's target demographic is widening in age and (due to market conditions) narrowing into the business and high end consumer markets.

Bounce ahead with me 5 years.

iPod has been expanded to include bluetooth, colour screen, larger storage and additional Apps. Interface remains the same. Apple has just offered a G3 PCS version of iPod with OS-X-Lite and speech to text/text to speech.

Apple has just introduced a bluetooth headset with mic.

Apple has added a range of online services (by way of x-serve) including Banking, credit and web hosting. Airport 2 has been released running 802.11g with 256 bit encryption and a 250 foot range. One of the additional apps for iPod is a digital "cheque book" that works via bluetooth.

iBook and iMac both come with a touch screen, stylus and optional Apple Pro Keyboard.

TiBook gains touch screen/stylus feature but retains keyboard.

Booting from iPod via FW2 becomes common practice, adding security and freeing up drive space.

Apple is headed for a complete digital lifestyle that would out compete PDAs with iPods. PDAs as a product because they add to the clutter of Geek-Factor hardware that people at large don't want. The consumer we're looking at is the same one that would buy a Clie but sees the bennefit of a secure, portable HD and therefore buys an iPod. It just takes some time to get there is all and there's much more to be done in getting the Towers and CPU situation under control before focussing on killing an already weak Palm Inc.

Is that better?;) :D

May 29, 2002, 04:59 PM

Is that better? In tone, much.

Thank you.

I'd like a modern Newton that could fit in my pocket and do everything that my iBook can. And double as a mobile, and a TV, and tell me I'm great, and give great head. It's not going to happen, alas.

But there are intermediate products along the route to such a beast which would be winners, and an electronic notebook replacement would be one of them. Who'd have imagined that Apple would produce something as simple and prosaic as a straight MP3 player before iPod came out? Look at the rumours and expectations before its release.

But while it was a 'disappointment' to the geeks, we all bought them. And the modest i-jotter will be just as popular and will further improve the appeal of iMacs and iBooks as digi-hubs.

And in the medium term it wouldn't mitigate against more ambitious products.

But text-to-speech in five years? I doubt it. Not for technical reasons, but due to inherent conservatism and the limitations of many work environments. People can scribble notes anywhere, but with open plan offices, noisy classrooms, etc. they can't talk anywhere, let alone dictate well enough for ViaVoice or its derivatives to cope with.

Colour iPods? Maybe, perhaps, but my sources tell me to expect further single-use dedicated devices, not developed versatile multi-role Pod derivatives. They even looked hard at a digital camera designed specifically to work with iPhoto, I'm told.

Apple's as aware as anyone of the vast numbers of Palm PDAs bought for the promise of handwriting recognition and then discarded because it won't actually do cursive natural handwriting.

And look at the money spent on Inkwell.....


When have Apple gone low-end? iMac, eMac, iBook, even iPod. And any device won't on its own force dozens of PC users to swap over straight away, it'll just be another factor influencing purchase and upgrade decisions, as the iMac's looks have been, as the iPod is proving, etc.

Stimulating debate though, guys!

May 29, 2002, 05:29 PM

Since then it's been pretty much a non-issue. Search for all threads containing " Newton" or "PDA" previous to this one for the other discussions.


PS: I'm aware of the "din" associated with mass- headset use, I don't think that'd be the main interface for a complete sub-notebook but rather a supplemental interface for a "Digital Lifestyle" wallet that stores ALL your personal Data: scheduling, phone #'s, files and Music........ even Apps and a bootable copy of X with all your iApps on board.

The iPod IS the Digital Hub......... We're just not quite finnished yet....... :D

May 29, 2002, 11:45 PM
It would seem that where there is smoke there might be fire but Apple is run a bit more conservatively than it used to in regards to following the market and economics. I would imagine the ipod is truly a test but I wouldn't put my eggs all in one basket that future portable devices from Apple will use any type of form factor that is similar to the ipod and I don't see it being the "digital hub". Only someone trying to outguess Apple could come to that conclusion. Sure there will be enhancements but there are other devices they need to deliver that can supplement their core markets which are desktop and laptop systems. The ipod is not one of their core markets and I doubt it ever will be unless they deliver a Windows or multiplatform version. Doing this would demonstrate to the public that they are more serious about following Sony's lead in becoming a giant in various industries similar to them.

As to the next non-ipod, non-laptop, portable device from Apple, it's been said elsewhere, but it's not going to be considered a pda by Steve's or Apple's definition...at least initially. Remember Steve wants to be unique...Think Different...and that's their best bet in any market when they're unique and ahead of the rest. I recall early in Steve's comeback him commenting that the Mac is not a PC. These days he refers to the Mac numerous times as a PC. It's all about marketing at strategic times. I'd say that as long as the market is there and Apple has some of the best market research out there, we will see a new portable device that the media will call a pda but Apple will not. It's just Apple's way of trying to deliver the next cool product under everyone's radar.

Of course the thing that works against them is that it has to be very "cool" because the pda market really isn't stagnent like many believe. There are things going on behind the scenes. The economy is playing a small role in slowing it down but there is alot of development and money being thrown around that most average Joe's don't know about. Much of this will become evident over the next year.

May 30, 2002, 05:53 AM
Originally posted by mischief
...Saying Apple will enter the market just because it's stagnant and using iPod as an example is rather naive....

I was observing the result, not the reason.

Originally posted by mischief
...iPod was less about Mp3 than it was about portability of Data...

I believe the original slogan was 1000 songs in your pocket, not all your word documents and jpegs and backup apps in your pocket. This was a plus that many if not all ipod users use but not what the ipod was "about". With this feature they were testing the waters

None the less after reading your last posts I believe we are in the same camp, this whole PDA thing is too semantical... I say PDA you say DLW but it is the same device we all want to see. I just hope sooner than 5 years I have too much junk and not enough pockets

May 30, 2002, 10:41 AM
Yes, Apple will expand what is now iPod into exactly what's implied in the name.

An MP3 player was the simplest basic app that had the widest appeal. The technology behind iPod will support much more versatility than MP3's alone.

Yes, we will of course be seeing major advancements in the desktop/portable arena but I think Apple's approach is headed in the direction of IBM's modular computer form factor.

IBM has a product available for liscencing that's a module holding the drive, processor, video HW and RAM. This module is fitted via a unique socket into either a desktop, portable or Tablet shell.

I think Apple's headed in a more conservative direction:

Each user gets an iPod. Each iPod contains a bootable system, the suite of iApps, iPod SW, MP3's and personal data. The various computers throughout an office or home rebootable from the iPod so all personal Data stays where it is and your prefs are always the same. With a 20Gb iPod this would be practical.

With the iPod model Apple needn't use so many custom parts and the machines can be used even without an iPod. Switching to FW2 would be neccessary to make this practical though.

I'm still convinced Apple is headed toward adding a stylus to their displays. Apple has an amazing amount of R&D into ergonomics and diversifying input would naturalize the interface.

Of course I also believe that design and marketing are 2 separate things, iPod sells better as an MP3 player to non-Geeks and it's exclusivity attracts customers. Making a PC version or even developing a player for M$ would be like admitting defeat.

MasterX (OSiX)
May 30, 2002, 04:45 PM
Apple doesn't make low-end I said, you said:

Originally posted by Jackonicko
When have Apple gone low-end? iMac, eMac, iBook, even iPod.

Are you even listening to yourself? iPod is $399-$499. Don't bring up that "HD is the same $500" crap, i know that. iPod is still damn costly.

May 30, 2002, 06:44 PM
iPod may be a poor example, because it's expensive by comparison with some competitors, but in iMac, iBook and EMac, Apple have gone very much 'low end' price-wise.

MasterX (OSiX)
May 30, 2002, 07:38 PM
OK OK, I admit perhaps i'm just brewing contraversy. But i still think Apple will push the limit of the PDA, just as the iPod did for MP3 players. Although if they made a non-PDA a low powered device would make more sence (LCD with a Bluetooth/Airport card). One idea would be that it only runs display funct. off a nice GPU (Mobility Radeon/7500 32MB for example), and that all the CPU is done at the base computer. Dont know how well that'd work but it's an idea.

May 30, 2002, 08:37 PM
i dont have time to say everything i want to say, but i wanted to comment that this is one fo the best onversations (well the last past i sort of skipped ahead) ive seen on MR in a good long time. i guess its because all the zealots (high posters) stay away from pda threads.

good to hear you newbies posting some great stuff. hope you stick around and confront the zealots more often.

on semantics. dead on. some people (apple included) dont want to call it a pda. i have started saying handheld. basically i want a wireless handheld that can function on its own or act as a wireless terminal for my desktop over lan or internet connections. and i take perfect handwriting recognition for granted since we had it back in 97 with the newton.

'neeways, gots to go keep the good vibes flowin'


MasterX (OSiX)
May 30, 2002, 08:44 PM
for the record i'm not a newb. I just post towards the end of the thread sometimes and i usually make my 1st (and 2nd/3rd/4th) post a good page long. I'm trying to keep them shorter now since i have so many cool icons i want to use at the big five-o (o)

May 31, 2002, 02:55 AM
i really grow tired of the apple pda stories ive seen them since the demise of the newton, the rise of the palm, and months prior to any MW Expo. They speculate on names iWalk, iPad, and even iPod, but iHavethelastlaugh. iAlwaysfindtheyreworng. And iWillbelieveitwhen iSeeit.

May 31, 2002, 10:41 AM
I'm not discounting the probability that Apple will do a wireless-tablet/display/terminal I'm just argueing Apple's design direction as a course of projection.

I think the PDA will get squashed by iPod and it's successors.The sub-notebook palmtop will evolve from Apple's present portables and Apple will be doing bluetooth and 802.11g as soon as they can.

I think we're going to see iMac G4 evolve into a base station with detatchable display/terminal a la "Mira".

I think Scribble is being added to OS X et al because Apple's going to add touch-screen capability and a stylus to ALL IT"S MACHINES.:D ;)

I think the Tower G4 assembly that replaces the present case will bear a striking resemblance to a combined X-serve and X-RAID.

I think Apple has MUCH more in store than simply building a better PC. Apple is attempting to saturate the *nix market and draw simultaniously from frustrated Wintel users with shiny, reliable toys that just so happen to be profoundly versatile, highly developable devices.

May 31, 2002, 11:35 AM
Originally posted by mischief

I think Scribble is being added to OS X et al because Apple's going to add touch-screen capability and a stylus to ALL IT"S MACHINES.:D ;)

They may add the capability(meaning necessary api's) but I don't think we're going to see all of the systems shipping with these features. It's ok to think different but not on a level customers won't have a need for. I honestly think they're looking for the handwriting side to help them in working their way further in niche markets such as kiosks and custom oem hardware. They've got the OS, a fast development turnaround time environment with objective c and even java, so they need to add support for various "special" devices. This is their way of entering the business market under the radar of many folks.

We also have to consider the handwriting recognition coupled with a good hardware solution could make Apple a hero again in the education market.

For the typical consumer market imac and even PowerMac I don't see it meaning much of anything except to talk about.