Why the facination with PDA's?


macrumors regular
Original poster
Sep 5, 2001
I realize I may start some silly little forum war with this thread, but I just wanna know.

What is this facination with PDA's? Apple (Steve Jobs) has repeatedly stated that they will not get back into the PDA market. And judging by the lack-luster performance of the market at present I can understand why.

So, knowing that, why is it that everytime Apple even *hints* at a new product, the boards go crazy with things like


and on and on.

So, what gives?


macrumors god
Staff member
Apr 9, 2001
probably from people (like myself) who loved their Newton. The Newton was great.... and we hope Apple will outdo themselves. :)



macrumors member
Oct 5, 2001
Follow my logic

We like computers. Why do we like them? Because they increase our potential and improve our functionality. It's not just because we have a James Bond-esque fascination with gagets, but because computers are truly marvelous tools that increase our innovation and productivity.
We like portable computers even better because they offer something desktops do not: freedom and mobility. The concept of not to having to check into an office just because that's where your filing cabinet or computer is physically located is both exciting and valuable. Time is precious and any tool that makes use of your time more efficiently is inherently worthwhile.
This is also why we value cellular phones. They keep us in contact with the world when we might be otherwise unavailable. The phone calls we make during our commute or from an airplane or on your way to the gym represent a good use of time in one of two ways. Either you have saved yourself time because those calls would had to have been made later or you have increased the value of your time by accomplishing something you otherwise would never have accomplished. For instance, a call to a friend while you're driving to work just to shoot the ****. It's certaintly valid to say this probably enhanced your life more than just listening to the radio and it's something that you might not otherwise have worked into your busy schedule without a cell phone.
And we want our technology to be unobtrusive. Having a cell phone might not be worth it if it's a 40 pound backpack that you have to lug around. But if it fits in your pocket barely noticably until you need it then it suddenly it has alot more practicality, as long as it isn't too expensive.
PDA's are simply an extension of this concept. The idea of a PDA that can do EVERYTHING is very appealing. The technology isn't quite there yet but it's so close we can almost taste it. Though PDA's will never replace a full sized notebook like the tibook for reasons such as screen size, speed/power and a full keyboard, it would certaintly be nice to have something as small as say a palm pilot, that can do pretty much everything your full sized notebook can, plus a few other devices all rolled into one tiny package. Most of the time you don't need a full screen and if the handwriting or voice recognition software were good enough a keyboard wouldn't matter. Then what you're left with is all the functionality of a computer(internet, email, word processor, mp3, video files), the convenience of a current PDA(Scribble pad, calendar, address book) and roughly the size of a cellular phone(including the abilty to actually BE a mobile phone). Wouldn't you want something like that?

[Edited by Traveler on 10-24-2001 at 04:17 PM]


macrumors 68030
Jun 25, 2001
Moneyapolis, Minnesota
i think what people here need to start saying instead of PDA and NEW NEWTON is maybe somewhere on the lines of micro-computer. face it, personal computers will eventually, some day, be the size of todays pda's. if i had my way though, i would rip off the keyboard of the TIbook, and turn the screen so it's in place of the keyboard (i realize the screen would easily be damaged, that's why we have hard plastics that would cover it, it would also have to be touch sensitive for a pen) and now you have yourself a REAL notebook computer for WRITING notes and surfing the web via airport etc.


macrumors regular
Jul 31, 2001
San Luis Obispo, CA
I wouldn't go that far...

I can still enter text about 5 times faster with a keyboard than with a pen. So I wouldn't throw that away. I just want a PDA that has more than 64 mb storage and does more than just scheduling and maybe a few games. What I'm saying is that if you take the iPod, put a bigger screen on it and load some PDA software, you'd have a winner. I personally think that the iPod is still a prototype, and Jobs is not expecting it to sell great amounts. He's trying to seed the market so that it will start turning away from the standard notebooks and laptops. I'll bet within a year or two we'll see what Apple really had in mind for the iPod.


Jul 9, 2000

pda market lackluster???

have you seen the desktop market lately

should apple start selling fruit or something?

...just kidding

what jobs says one moment may have no bearing on the next ...because of his personality ...but it's more likely the personality of the high tech field in general