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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:39 PM   #1
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Speculation About a 'MacBook Touch' Builds



Speculation about a possible Apple tablet has started infiltrating the mainstream media with an article on ABCNews summarizing public reaction to this possibility. The buzz about Apple's next product kicked into high gear after Apple's Peter Oppenheimer uncharacteristically described a new product during the Q3 2008 financial results conference call.

Rumors about an Apple tablet have been ongoing for years with credible claims that had originally pointed to a 2003 release. Since then, it has been revealed that Apple had been working on a tablet called Safari Pad but this was later morphed into the iPhone.

Shortly after the financial results call, MacDailyNews published an unconfirmed report about a "MacBook Touch" with a laundry list of possible features. While the exact details of the report remain up for debate, an earlier rumor from Jason O'Grady did point to a Mac OS X tablet launching this September or October. O'Grady believes this sort of iTablet is exactly what Oppenheimer was referring to.
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This, to me, means that Apple is going to leverage the more than 100 patents (like MultiTouch) that they’ve filed for iPhone in a larger screen device that borrows heavily from iPhone. Think of a larger, media playing, eBook reading iTablet with 3G, GPS, and Bluetooth. Now think of it in 6, 8 and 10-inch screen sizes. This is when things get interesting.
Indeed, Apple's extensive multitouch patent library has depicted multitouch control panels intended for use in Mac OS X and not just the iPhone OS.

Many believe that if Apple were to introduce a Tablet-based computer, they would have addressed the issues that have prevented mass adoption of existing Tablet PCs. Based on the "Safari Pad" codename of their previous tablet project, it seems obvious that Apple once considered web browsing to be the killer app of such a device.





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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:43 PM   #2
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Honestly, while this sounds cool, I hope a non-touch Macbook or comparably priced laptop remains available.
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:44 PM   #3
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Honestly, while this sounds cool, I hope a non-touch Macbook or comparably priced laptop remains available.
I'm sure it will - if this product is actually released I'm sure it will be complementary, just as the iPod touch did not replace the existing iPod line when it was released.
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:44 PM   #4
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Eh, I was hoping Apple avoids the "netbook" crave. But mult-touch would make it more interesting than most.
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:45 PM   #5
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I think if they could make a tablet that was dockable and therefore usable in a desktop sort of situation (similar to a laptop) then this would be an interesting product. I still can't really see the need for a device that is just a tablet.
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:47 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by inkswamp View Post
I think if they could make a tablet that was dockable and therefore usable in a desktop sort of situation (similar to a laptop) then this would be an interesting product. I still can't really see the need for a device that is just a tablet.
+1.

Sure. I'd like a tablet from Apple... but only if I have the option to dock it for a more desktop experience (table + chair), when needed/wanted.

Last edited by lazyrighteye; Jul 25, 2008 at 02:53 PM.
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:49 PM   #7
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Am I the only one who doesn't get excited imagining this? It seems gimmicky, and I don't get the feeling that a market for this exists. As it stands today, no sane person would choose a computer without a keyboard/mouse to be his "one and only". The keyboard and mouse are here to stay. Plus I'm a screen-cleaning fascist, and I couldn't handle the emotional trauma of filthy fingers touching my screen!
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:50 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by smootling View Post
Am I the only one who doesn't get excited imagining this? It seems gimmicky, and I don't get the feeling that a market for this exists. As it stands today, no sane person would choose a computer without a keyboard/mouse to be his "one and only". The keyboard and mouse are here to stay. Plus I'm a screen-cleaning fascist, and I couldn't handle the emotional trauma of filthy fingers touching my screen!
I'm sure Apple will find some market or other way to make this profitable. They've done it with everything else. (unless the ipod touch has flopped)
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:51 PM   #9
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I hope this launched sounds really cool
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:52 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by inkswamp View Post
I think if they could make a tablet that was dockable and therefore usable in a desktop sort of situation (similar to a laptop) then this would be an interesting product. I still can't really see the need for a device that is just a tablet.
Apple did file a patent a while back and the link below is my favorite rendition of what patent may look like.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/macbooktouch/
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:52 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smootling View Post
Am I the only one who doesn't get excited imagining this? It seems gimmicky, and I don't get the feeling that a market for this exists. As it stands today, no sane person would choose a computer without a keyboard/mouse to be his "one and only". The keyboard and mouse are here to stay. Plus I'm a screen-cleaning fascist, and I couldn't handle the emotional trauma of filthy fingers touching my screen!
imho this new product wouldn't be marketed as a "one and only" device. It's designed to complement the living room while sitting on your couch or going mobile to the office etc.
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:53 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Peace View Post
imho this new product wouldn't be marketed as a "one and only" device. It's designed to complement the living room while sitting on your couch or going mobile to the office etc.
Hm, your perspective makes it sound a little more interesting to me! I'm just worried that with all the touch-obsessing going on, the actual computers are going to get left in the dust.
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:55 PM   #13
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Missing something?

Maybe I'm missing something, but I fail to see the use of this type of product, beyond the corporate/business customer. What could I use this in my home for, that I can't do with any other regular mac or macbook or iphone?
I just don't see myself walking around with a tablet just to browse the net. The keyboard will be a touch keypad, which is not conducive to long typing sessions, so its use would be limited to touch-friendly apps like a browser, sms, light email, etc... just like the iphone.

Where does this product fit?

Any ideas what the market for this will be? Am I missing a key use for this product?
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:56 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by inkswamp View Post
I think if they could make a tablet that was dockable and therefore usable in a desktop sort of situation (similar to a laptop) then this would be an interesting product. I still can't really see the need for a device that is just a tablet.
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Originally Posted by lazyrighteye View Post
+1.

I'd like a tablet Mac... only if I have the option to dock it for a more desktop experience, when needed/wanted.
Reading these post made me remember one of Apple's patents that came up a while ago:
Click image for larger version

Name:	Picture 1.png
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Personally, that would be really cool.

My guess is that Apple is delaying announcing new Apple Cinema Displays because they will announce them with the new iTablet. Not that all Cinema Displays would have the 'docking' feature, but the lower end models would, and Apple would want all the designs to stay uniform across the product line.
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:56 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peace View Post
imho this new product wouldn't be marketed as a "one and only" device. It's designed to complement the living room while sitting on your couch or going mobile to the office etc.
It will definitely be targeted towards a certain user-base, much like the MacBook Air - it won't be for everyone.
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:56 PM   #16
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I'll believe this if and only if:
  • pigs fly
  • hell freezes over
  • I am the proud owner of a PowerBook G5, MacTablet, or xMac

Until then it's just another fanatsy.

-Clive
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:58 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monke View Post
Reading these post made me remember one of Apple's patents that came up a while ago:
Attachment 126344

Personally, that would be really cool.

My guess is that Apple is delaying announcing new Apple Cinema Displays because they will announce them with the new iTablet. Not that all Cinema Displays would have the 'docking' feature, but the lower end models would, and Apple would want all the designs to stay uniform across the product line.
Ok, I didn't see a use for the tablet at first, but if this is what they come out with.... HOLY CRAP!!!
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:59 PM   #18
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I think Apple should name it an iTab. They can likely buy the domain name itab.com cheaply from the individual that owns it...
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 02:59 PM   #19
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I assume you would be able to connect a keyboard and possibly a mouse.... I think it would be alright. As long as you can connect it to a monitor, keyboard, and mouse when needed so your not limited to the small touch screen.
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 03:01 PM   #20
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mini replacement?

Hmm..

This makes me think that maybe this is the replacement for the macmini?
it would have all the normal features and specs as a mini, but has a touch screen and obviously different form factor. But like a mini, you can plug into a TV/Monitor and attach a keyboard/mouse, and voila!
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 03:02 PM   #21
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I'd love a tablet. I wish it could function as a wireless monitor for a desktop, obviously touch sensitive. Like a Cintiq.

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Old Jul 25, 2008, 03:02 PM   #22
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price it @ $500 for the 6 inch 800 $ for the 8 inch & $1000 for the 10 inch and they sell like hot cakes!

just imagine all the hospitals wanting these
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 03:03 PM   #23
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The new Macintouch
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Old Jul 25, 2008, 03:03 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adamw View Post
I think Apple should name it an iTab. They can likely buy the domain name itab.com cheaply from the individual that owns it...
* runs off to buy itab.com for cheap, then prepares to charge Apple a mint for it *

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Old Jul 25, 2008, 03:05 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by smootling View Post
Am I the only one who doesn't get excited imagining this? It seems gimmicky, and I don't get the feeling that a market for this exists. As it stands today, no sane person would choose a computer without a keyboard/mouse to be his "one and only". The keyboard and mouse are here to stay. Plus I'm a screen-cleaning fascist, and I couldn't handle the emotional trauma of filthy fingers touching my screen!
I agree 100%. This seems very gimmicky to me. This would be too big to put in a pocket (like an iPhone or iPod Touch) for true portability, and too small to be useful for real work, especially without a keyboard or mouse. The constant cleaning of the screen from all the fingerprints would be bothersome too.

I was hoping that the whole UMPC and Tablet stuff would just go away, but maybe not. I had a Nokia 770 and it sucked. (The 800 and 810 are better, but I still wouldn't want one.) The UMPC movement seemed too expensive and didn't provide any compelling apps or a big reason to get one versus just a good laptop. The current touch Macbook (by MacSales) is too expensive and only of interest to niche markets.

Plus - what software is going to be available for this thing right off the bat to make it a compelling buy? Is something like this going to come out in September to show off so developers can make some apps for it, or will it be actually available for sale?

Maybe it will be a combination tablet/netbook or something. Or maybe it will have a pop-out keyboard like the Nokia 810? Maybe we can hook up the Apple wireless keyboard and mouse and make it act like a more traditional laptop. But it would clumsy and inconvenient to carry this extra stuff around.

I would rather see them make a Mini Macbook (like the HP MiniNote or MSI Wind), drop the price on the MacBook Air, and come out with a 13" MacBook Pro versus this tablet stuff. Leave the touchscreen for the small devices that can actually use this interface.
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