General Question

sndfreQ's avatar

Will the next 'ultra portable' mac be a thin client?

Asked by sndfreQ (11700 points ) December 28th, 2007

A ton of speculation here, but have been hearing a lot about purported specs, and from all the descriptions (smaller screen, poss. no keyboard/multitouch, flash memory/storage) all points to the possibility that the next release may be in this niche market.

This also seems to jive with the tablet, pmp and other speculations about the ‘next’ Apple product…plus, one of my colleagues (who works with Apple retail-go figure fwiw) indicated that the next model wouldn’t necessarily replace existing MBP tech or iPhone, but be somewhere in between.

Asking because I’m in the market for a wifi-PMP, but given Apple’s track record w/closed-end OS and DRM (i.e. no plays-for-sure et. al) would something like this be worth waiting for? Or am I just suffering from fanboi syndrome?

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5 Answers

mirza's avatar

I dont think you should wait if you want a PMP. First of all, the Apple “ultra-portable” will reportedly be worth around $ 1500 (according to a bunch of sources). You can get a decent PMP with wifi capabilities for a quarter of the price. Personally, I would recommend the Nokia N810 ($400) or the Nokia N800 ($250). I think “the ultra-portable” will be more like those UMPCs than a PMP.

ps. people who work at apple retail are not informed as to what a new apple product will be. (the manager gets notified the night before the day of the actual announcement but even he is not allowed to disclose that information)

bob's avatar

I’m with Mirza, with the added speculation that the rumored ultra-portable is most likely to be a laptop (not tablet) with keyboard and flash memory. The iPod Touch is the wifi-PMP and is likely to stay that way for some time.

On the plus side, you can expect third-party apps for the Touch/iPhonein the near future (SDK coming in Feb. ‘08), and nothing about Apple’s hardware requires DRM. They just don’t play other manufacturers’ DRM.

The ultra-portable probably won’t be what you’re looking for, but then again, if it’s coming, it will come on Jan. 15, so you don’t have to wait too long to find out for sure.

sndfreQ's avatar

Yeah you’re right on that one…so many have been rumoring for years now about a Newton-esque revival of an Apple tablet…

I guess the big let-down for me is the incompatibility with subscription models such as Rhapsody-to-Go, etc…just tired of paying for each tune a-la-cart, and I’m really feeling what producer Rick Rubin said about iTunes and that type of service compared to the subscription model.

I already asked Mirza, but have you guys heard of/checked out the Haier ibiza-Rhapsody? I’m not trying to intentionally promote it, but my brother-in-law has one and for what I’m looking for (on-the-go downloads from Rhapsody’s 4-million-plus library) this might get my money in the end…btw, mirza, the Nokia looks awesome, but no R-2-G support (check out this thread

Apparently a lot of folks with the N8×0 series are having problems even streaming content from Real (and are not able to download ‘to-go’ at all)...any thoughts?

mirza's avatar

The reason I would recommend the N800 or the even more awesome N810 is that it has actual browser with full flash 9 support meaning you can watch videos on youtube( not just the limited section as in the iPod touch) ,vimeo,etc. Plus the thing that I am pretty sure is that when Apple does launch its SDK it will charge people for applications. While with the N810 everything will be free (since its open-source).

@sndfreq: on a side note, you can stream free full-length songs from deezer.com on the N800/810 . Also does the Haier ibiza feature a wifi browser ?

sndfreQ's avatar

yeah the ibiza has a ‘limited’ wifi browser; you can apparently type in url’s, but no flash support :(

I use deezer too-it is really good-especially for more indie tracks, but also rarities not on Rh. I was asking/referring to the fact that folks have not been able to download content so they can play music when not in a wifi area. For me this would be when I’m commuting to/from work, for example.

…good point on the open-source WinCE for Nokias…definitely a point Nokia will always have above the Apple i-whatever…I can tell that owners of the Nokias are fanatical about its functionality.

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