Apple plans ultra-portable PC

tektonnic

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Mar 6, 2006
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UNBEATLES FIRM Apple is expected to show off a new "ultra-portable PC" based around flash memory, small bits and bobs and some coloured plastic, at the January Macworld trade show in San Francisco.

The plan has been revealed by UBS Investment Research analyst Ben Reitzes who thinks he has managed to discover that Apple is working on ultra-portable PCs and notebooks equipped with NAND flash memory in order to speed up boot times.

According to Appleinsider, Apple's new chum, Intel plans to make the NAND flash drives and the idea is also being looked at by Microsoft.

Apparently, Apple thinks that its new portables could be the next iPod.

Reitzes adds that they should do quite well in the education sector, which is an Apple stronghold, he says. It's not here, though. Maybe where he lives
Source: http://www.theinquirer.net/?article=32427
 

Collin973

macrumors 6502
Mar 29, 2006
259
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Wow. If this is true, then EXCELLENT. I'd love to see an Ultra Portable computer made by Apple. I have an older Compaq Ipaq and the thing is great for lots of things. Also, this NAND ram sounds pretty sweet, allowing the computer to boot faster. Many computers today boot pretty quick (around 30 secs) compared to older computers. I turned on this old Windows 98 machine I have in my basement and it took at leas 3 minutes to boot completely. I hope this comes true!!
 

tektonnic

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Original poster
Mar 6, 2006
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I wonder whether it will be linked to in anyway the wind-up 'computers for every child in 3rd world' initiative the UN were pushing, i know they showed the thing as green etc. but that was going to use flash technology.
 

MisterMe

macrumors G4
Jul 17, 2002
10,678
47
USA
tektonnic said:
I wonder whether it will be linked to in anyway the wind-up 'computers for every child in 3rd world' initiative the UN were pushing, i know they showed the thing as green etc. but that was going to use flash technology.
With 32 GB SATA flash drives going for $1000, the actual computers will be a little bit rich for their blood.
 

thejadedmonkey

macrumors G3
May 28, 2005
8,219
1,229
Pennsylvania
I'm thinking (ok, hoping) that it'll be a 12" tablet for around (realistically) $1400-$1600. That would be killer for what I (think that I) need for college.
 

emotion

macrumors 68040
Mar 29, 2004
3,186
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Manchester, UK
CanadaRAM said:
eMate, Anyone?
Been there, done that, almost got the bankruptcy papers.
Arguably the world wasn't ready for the emate or the Newton at that time. These devices didn't have much in the way of network connectivity and WiFi didn't exist then.

I think now more than any other time people would latch on to this. Something more computer like than a PDA but still a real OSX-based computer. All this based around the near ubiquitous availablity of wireless networks.

We live in interesting times :)
 

emotion

macrumors 68040
Mar 29, 2004
3,186
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Manchester, UK
thejadedmonkey said:
I'm thinking (ok, hoping) that it'll be a 12" tablet for around (realistically) $1400-$1600. That would be killer for what I (think that I) need for college.
I think we're possibly talking about smaller devices than that (10.4" screens) and lower price points (£500).

I guess we'll see.
 

emotion

macrumors 68040
Mar 29, 2004
3,186
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Manchester, UK
Does anyone have a feel for read and write speeds of NAND flash memory. From a quick google it seems the read speed is more or less similar to a hd on an ATA bus. 108MB/s from here: http://www.samsung.com/Products/Semiconductor/OneNAND/onenand_512_1024mb.htm

The write speed seems to be an order of magnitude less. This has some serious implications for using this in a machine that isn't a read only device (ok for ipod but not necessarily for a laptop).

Anyone?
 

brbubba

macrumors 6502
May 20, 2006
485
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thejadedmonkey said:
I'm thinking (ok, hoping) that it'll be a 12" tablet for around (realistically) $1400-$1600. That would be killer for what I (think that I) need for college.
That would suck when I just bought the black macbook. I can't imagine a flash notebook coming in under 2k.
 

bbrosemer

macrumors 6502a
Jan 28, 2006
638
1
There could still be a hard drive and the OS could be held on the Flash memory so you would only need 5-6 gb of memory for the OS... Can anyone say good idea...
 

celebrian23

macrumors 65816
Mar 12, 2006
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Under the sun
I'm personally not interested- I don't like ultraportables. But it is still exciting. I hope it wil have an opitcal drive- most ultraportables don't.
 

emotion

macrumors 68040
Mar 29, 2004
3,186
3
Manchester, UK
DavidLeblond said:
I think Apple should definately do this. Look at what a huge success the Oragami is!

oh wait...
:)

I've been watching the Origami with apple ultraportables in mind. All of the origami implementations I've seen so far have been extremely inelegant (to put it politely!).

Remember before the iPod came along the market for HD based mp3 players didn't really exist either.
 

erikamsterdam

macrumors regular
Apr 21, 2006
183
0
amsterdam
I don't want to crash your party, but a computer based on NAND memory is not possible yet.
NAND memory has a limited amount of write cycles, it dies after that. It can not handle the load of temp files and swap files. The computer would have a very limited lifetime.
 

emotion

macrumors 68040
Mar 29, 2004
3,186
3
Manchester, UK
celebrian23 said:
I'm personally not interested- I don't like ultraportables. But it is still exciting. I hope it wil have an opitcal drive- most ultraportables don't.
That's exactly what the ultraportable doesn't need.
 

gloss

macrumors 601
May 9, 2006
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erikamsterdam said:
I don't want to crash your party, but a computer based on NAND memory is not possible yet.
NAND memory has a limited amount of write cycles, it dies after that. It can not handle the load of temp files and swap files. The computer would have a very limited lifetime.
And I'm sure that Samsung gave that a lot of thought when they designed the drives.
 

thumb

macrumors 6502
May 8, 2005
268
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forget a pda style comptuer, or even a tablet, what apple needs is an ultra weight, well designed smaller laptop.

external cd drive (come one, how often do you use this), 3.5 lbs.

as for flash drive, i have to imagine we are talking about the hybrid flash/platter drives first, i can't imagine apple will be able to leapfrog these and go straight to flash if there is to be any amount of storage.

btw, these laptops well done i see as *more* expensive than the macbook, not less. and i for would be gladly pay it.
 

Yvan256

macrumors 603
Jul 5, 2004
5,049
927
Canada
MisterMe said:
With 32 GB SATA flash drives going for $1000, the actual computers will be a little bit rich for their blood.
Those 100$ computers only have 512MB of flash memory (probably directly connected to the IDE bus), not a 32GB SATA flash drive.

As for the size of an ultra-portable, I'd want something the size of a Nintendo DS Lite (maybe a bit taller so it's not so "widescreen" once opened).
 

celebrian23

macrumors 65816
Mar 12, 2006
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Under the sun
emotion said:
That's exactly what the ultraportable doesn't need.
I guess I'm the rare person who uses their optical drive all the time :) I'd still like one even if no one else does :)

thumb said:
btw, these laptops well done i see as *more* expensive than the macbook, not less. and i for would be gladly pay it.
Agreed. I tink these should fit a niche, and niche computers typically come with a premium.
 
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