MacBook Nano. Complete speculation of course.

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by popelife, Dec 28, 2006.

  1. popelife macrumors member

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    Nov 3, 2006
    #1
    MacWorld. Leopard, yeah... New/updated apps, yeah... C2D Mac Mini, probably... iTV, yep...

    But none of this is particularly revolutionary (apart from iTV, but that cat's already out of the bag). I can't recall a previous January MacWorld where there've been so few leaks. You'd almost think Apple don't have anything new to show.

    Big-screen iPod? Maybe. But they won't do it if it's not ready.

    New MacBook Pro case design? I'd love to see that happen next week, but I think its unlikely before Santa Rosa.

    But here's some total speculation for you. What about a MacBook Nano?(admittedly my name for it).

    I'd been thinking about this for months. And then I saw a Vaio TX3 for the first time today, and it's pretty much what I had in mind. Take the smallest, lowest-power components you can find (1.8" iPod-type HD, low-power Intel Core-whatever, super-slim DVD drive) and squeeze them into a small case, perhaps with a fractionally under-sized keyboard. FWIW, the Vaio weighs just over 1kg, and the screen is about the thickness of two pieces of cardboard. Crumbs.

    The Vaio was also getting a lot of attention from punters... way more than any other PC on display. Everyone wanted it.

    The downside is that it's stupidly under-powered (Core Solo running at 1.2GHz, Intel video) - I'm sure in order to reduce power/heat. This would be okay if it wasn't also stupidly expensive (£1600, about as much as a 2.33GHz 15" MBP!)

    If Apple brought out something along these lines (but waaay cheaper - why IS the Sony so expensive?), it could totally clean up the casual user market. The kind of people who aren't video editing on the run, but want something super-small and convenient to check their mail on in Starbucks. I still have people who want to buy my 12" iBook from me because "it's so small".

    What do you reckon? One more thing...? Or do you think Apple will take a shot at a tablet-inspired design instead (and probably not right now)?

    After leading the way on performance, would Apple dare release a low-powered notebook that would struggle with things like Aperture? On the other hand, Aperture is considered a Pro app. While iLife still works reasonably well on a 1.33GHz G4 iBook!

    I don't see how Apple are going to produce a MacBook Pro "Thin", without it losing it's Pro status. Wouldn't a smaller, less powerful MBP essentially be a MacBook? However, I can see a much smaller, cheaper, less powerful MacBook...
     
  2. SkyBell macrumors 604

    SkyBell

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    Texas, unfortunately.
  3. Aniej macrumors 68000

    Aniej

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    Oct 17, 2006
    #3
    NO. All we will see at most would be 12" MBP.
     
  4. tominated macrumors 68000

    tominated

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    #4
    I would love to see a macbook nano/mini. maybe i'll make a mockup
     
  5. popelife thread starter macrumors member

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    Nov 3, 2006
    #5
    But wouldn't that essentially be a MacBook with a slightly better GPU and an aluminium case? What would be the point?

    Seems to me it's the low-end notebook market that Apple have abandoned somewhat. I suppose the MacBook does sell for about what an iBook used to cost... but there are much cheaper PC notebooks out there. Why not steal a chunk of that market, and convert previously inaccessible Windows users to OS X?
     
  6. Mammoth macrumors 6502a

    Mammoth

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    Canada
    #6
    I would love to see an Apple ultra portable. Think Sony VAIO TX, but with OS X and nicer looking. :p
     
  7. popelife thread starter macrumors member

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    Nov 3, 2006
    #7
    I've just noticed that Apple will have interesting options open to them with the imminent release of Intel's new low-power low-voltage C2D chips, the L7200 and 7400.

    Okay, they use more power than the ridiculuously frugal Core Solo in the Sony TX3, so you wouldn't be looking at something quite that compact. But the upside is that the new chips are dual core and have clock speeds up to 1.5GHz (1.6GHz chip coming later). So you could make something much smaller and lighter than a MacBook, but with performance that still did OSX and modern apps justice.

    Imagine... 1.8" 80GB hard drive, 11" or 12" widescreen LCD, and pack it into the smallest case possible. You wouldn't need to shrink the keyboard (because the machine's not going as titchy as the Sony - see http://tinyurl.com/ye9hbg), just get rid of the space to either side like the 12" iBook/PowerBook did. Reduce the front-to-back depth by 30% to match the not-as-tall screen. Make it thinner than a MBP if possible. I'm Photoshopping this in my head right now, and it looks fantastic. :)

    I think this would be a killer product (and a lot more exciting that any "headless iMac" mini-tower).
     
  8. popelife thread starter macrumors member

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    Nov 3, 2006
    #8
    Still fantasising out loud...

    Incorporate enough flash memory to act as a substantial cache for the HD. How much would you need? 2GB? 4GB? Flash is pretty cheap these days.

    That would negate many of the issues caused by a slow 1.8" HD. Could quick-boot from flash perhaps. Small to medium-sized files read/write to flash instead of the HD, and are only written to the HD when necessary. Result - faster response, and power savings from not spinning up the HD so often.

    BTW, specs for the L7200/L7400 - power TDP is 17W, less than half that of the MacBook processors.

    Anyone else for a small, light, full-featured MacBook with seven-hour-plus battery life? Sign me up.
     
  9. Xeem macrumors 6502a

    Xeem

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    Feb 2, 2005
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    Minnesota
    #9
    When I'm in school, I often don't have much space available (some of my classes are pretty packed), so every little bit of space counts, as the amount of width available for desk space is pretty limited. My 12" iBook is more than an inch and a half (4 cm) less wide than a Macbook, and I treasure every bit of that inch and a half when I'm in a lecture hall.
     
  10. Mammoth macrumors 6502a

    Mammoth

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    Nov 29, 2005
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    Canada
    #10
    I'd like something about 0.8" thick and the exact same length and width of a DVD case. That would make for some great ads. :)
     
  11. popelife thread starter macrumors member

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    Nov 3, 2006
    #11
    I think they used to call that a "Newton" :)

    Usual problem - what you and I want, what's feasible with current technology, and what will actually sell (and be profitable)... three separate things. Need to tick them all before it becomes a product.
     

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