Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed


Forgot your password?
Slashdot Deals: Deal of the Day - Pay What You Want for the Learn to Code Bundle, includes AngularJS, Python, HTML5, Ruby, and more. ×

Apple Tablet Rumor Wrap Up 348

Since the Apple event is this afternoon, and the submission bin overflows with Apple Tablet rumor stories, I'm putting up a few of the more choice links here so we can all speculate for the next few hours. A McGraw Hill CEO confirmed the tablet on CNBC last night, basically saying it is a big iPhone that has content agreements with publishers. Another blogger wrote in with a expectation list for the event, and technologizer had a nice history of fail in the world of tablet computing. Feel free to add your own rumor, speculation, and exhausted eye rolling below.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Apple Tablet Rumor Wrap Up

Comments Filter:
  • iphone nano

  • Apple's strategy (Score:5, Interesting)

    by schmidt349 (690948) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @10:08AM (#30917486)

    Sure it could be the next G4 Cube, but I think Apple's approach to emerging new computing niches gives them a fighting chance. Microsoft just throws Windows on the device complete with all the crappy desktop metaphors and UI widgets that are completely irrelevant to the new form factor -- witness Windows Mobile and all the Windows tablets. Apple at least rethinks usability.

    • by Finallyjoined!!! (1158431) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @10:11AM (#30917526)
      Correction: Apple at least rethinks usability properly.

      Microsoft bungs hundreds of millions at "usability" & we end up with the stupid ribbon... Pah!
      • Re:Apple's strategy (Score:5, Interesting)

        by digitig (1056110) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @10:51AM (#30918188)

        Correction: Apple at least rethinks usability properly. Microsoft bungs hundreds of millions at "usability" & we end up with the stupid ribbon... Pah!

        Do you really think the ribbon was anything to do with usability? As far as I can see, it was about having a patentable UI element that OO.o and its ilk couldn't copy.

        • by lastchance_000 (847415) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @11:08AM (#30918460)
          Why would anyone want to?
          • by digitig (1056110) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @11:17AM (#30918614)
            Lock-in. MS Office is pervasive in schools and in business, and a drastically different interface makes it harder for users to shift. True, for a short term the Ribbon is pushing some users who have the choice away from MS Office, but I think that MS are planning to ride that out and by agressive deals with schools, colleges, governments, etc get people locked in.
        • by cgenman (325138) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @11:44AM (#30919030) Homepage

          Do you really think the ribbon was anything to do with usability?

          Maybe patents had something to do with it, but it is classic Microsoft usability. It takes a cohesive, existing system, and layers on top an additional UI element that they hope will make all of the other UI elements make sense. Microsoft rarely removes elements.

          It's like Windows 7 filesharing. Not only did they keep the old Samba based filesharing, but they added an additional type of filesharing on top. Now you have the joys of setting all of the permissions twice, only now you don't really know which goes to which.

          Or the godawful and inconsistent side panels. Why you'd want a system-level UI element taking up that much room just to offer to print photos for you is anybody's guess. But the side panels simply replicate functionality that can be achieved by right-clicking, double clicking, going to the menus, option clicking, or sometimes multiples of the above.

          Or for that matter, Word: where each separate program module has its own interface elements. This is true whether those interface elements would make sense elsewhere, or replicate other functions / settings within the application. Or are just legacy and don't really matter anymore.

          Apple, on the other hand, actually streamlines. They removed the disk drive, removed the com and serial ports. When spotlight became the way to search in OSX, they removed the other ways to search. Instead of just trying to add, so as not to upset old users, they actively redesign the whole system to be usable as a whole. While I have low hopes for the tablet as a piece of hardware, I'm excited to see the interface conventions it comes up with.

      • by tepples (727027) <> on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @10:53AM (#30918232) Homepage Journal

        Microsoft bungs hundreds of millions at "usability" & we end up with the stupid ribbon

        I'm not convinced that "the stupid ribbon" is the best example of your thesis. Perhaps it is easier for novices to learn a program's tabbed toolbar than a program's menu bar. For one thing, recasting a pull-down menu as a toolbar keeps a class of actions on the screen where the user can see them rather than overlapping the document and disappearing once the user chooses an action. As I understand it, most of the whining about Ribbon came from 1. people who rely on muscle memory from previous versions of the product, the same sort of people who would get confused between Microsoft Office and anyway, and 2. people concerned about the legal fees of putting up prior art from 2002 [] to invalidate the patents that Microsoft engineers were applying for over tabbed toolbars. Sure, Ribbon has room for improvement, but it took a couple iterations for Apple to get pull-down menus right too.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by oji-sama (1151023)
          It definitely is not stupid. I've used the old version too much and can't really say I like it, but my mother (very much non-tech) got a new(ish) laptop and was very happy that 'the new Windows had this toolbar that makes things easy'. Took a while to understand that she was talking about the ribbon in Office...
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Simon Brooke (45012)

          Microsoft bungs hundreds of millions at "usability" & we end up with the stupid ribbon

          I'm not convinced that "the stupid ribbon" is the best example of your thesis. Perhaps it is easier for novices to learn a program's tabbed toolbar than a program's menu bar. For one thing, recasting a pull-down menu as a toolbar keeps a class of actions on the screen where the user can see them rather than overlapping the document and disappearing once the user chooses an action. As I understand it, most of the whining about Ribbon came from 1. people who rely on muscle memory from previous versions of the product, the same sort of people who would get confused between Microsoft Office and anyway, and 2. people concerned about the legal fees of putting up prior art from 2002 [] to invalidate the patents that Microsoft engineers were applying for over tabbed toolbars. Sure, Ribbon has room for improvement, but it took a couple iterations for Apple to get pull-down menus right too.

          To be honest I think the problem Microsoft has is that if it doesn't actively look different, people won't see it as a new version, so they won't pay for it again. I know this from programs I've written - if you make changes customers can't see, they're very unwilling to pay for them, even if they make significant improvements to speed, usability, stability or something else important to the customer. Word 2007 really isn't any better than the previous version - it isn't more reliable, it doesn't have any u

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Tom (822)

      Microsoft just throws Windows on the device complete with all the crappy desktop metaphors and UI widgets that are completely irrelevant to the new form factor -- witness Windows Mobile and all the Windows tablets. Apple at least rethinks usability.

      Apple at least thinks about usability. When's the last time that MS did that? I can tell you: Just prior to the launch of Win95, after even the final user testing showed that this "start button" concept is stupid, dumb, user-unfriendly and counterintuitive. They finally put the "Start" label on it (it was just the windos logo before that, yes a straight copy from the Apple logo on the Apple menu bar, except that that's always been on the menu bar where users expect menu things to be) and then added the "cli

  • Early Prediction (Score:3, Insightful)

    by pete-wilko (628329) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @10:09AM (#30917500)
    My prediction: that the massive amount of hype built up for this will mean a spectacular write-up of the device regardless of the quality - or else there will be a lot of egg on various 'tech reporters' faces. Also I loved the penny-arcade comic on this: []
    • by delinear (991444)
      Definitely. In fact I'd be surprised if a lot of sites haven't already done the write up and are just waiting to add in a few keywords from the speech so they can be first to publish. I love that Apple are thinking about style and usability, but at this rate they won't even need to try pretty soon (maybe today is that tipping point, we'll see).
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by itsdapead (734413)

      My prediction: that the massive amount of hype built up for this will mean a spectacular write-up of the device regardless of the quality

      My counter-prediction: when Jobs stands up and announces a larger version of the iPod Touch and the availability of ebooks on iTunes, lots of people will start publicly whinging about the fact that its not powered by zero-point energy, doesn't come with free, unlimited mobile broadband, the books still cost as much as paper books, has less space than a Nomad and is generally lame. Meanwhile, all the media bods who hyped it up will start scouring the land for pundits who now want to knock it down.

  • My toilet (Score:5, Funny)

    by digitalsushi (137809) <> on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @10:10AM (#30917506) Journal

    I'm excited, cause this is going to really shrink down the pile of magazines on my toilet tank! I love how Apple can always class up everything I do in life.

  • by Twillerror (536681) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @10:14AM (#30917564) Homepage Journal

    Looking at the history of the tablet it always seems to be a PC with a touch screen. MS Word or Excel and a tablet don't go together.

    The start menu, task bar, and general navigation of a full blown PC (win or mac) doesn't directly translate.

    It is very likely that this tablet will just be a big ole iPhone. I think everyone who has used their smart phone on their couch has gone "God I wish the screen was just a few more inches".

    The "content" portion of the web will translate very well to the new tablets.

    Any app that requires but load of editing...especially with text won't work. Imagine writing a book, some C++ code, or fill in a form with 20 inputs on one of these things. Even with a slide out keyboard these sort of tasks suck. People will make simple music and video editors...but real work just has to be done on a full pc.

    That said the tablet could be put in a doc and instead of translating the pc to a'll be the other way around. This is where MS might have some advantage for some folks...especially in business.

    A Chrome OS tablet has to follow with what is essentially an Android phone with a slightly bigger screen. MS will come out with something like Windows with a simple interface...or Zune(just rebrand the thing already MS).

    Wouldn't it be great if you could get one tablet with all three OSs....

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by delinear (991444)
      Yeah, with a dock for the office I can think of a bunch of niche areas this could fill nicely. I can't see how it could fully replace a significant portion of the desktop or laptop markets, but maybe that's the idea (since Apple already sell into both markes, it's likely just an attempt to close down on anyone else capturing that niche in the middle and a few stragglers from either market). Of course, a bunch of people will also buy it because of who made it, and a few more to use for couch surfing / as a r
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by NatasRevol (731260)
        I read the first two sentences of your comment and went:

        Dock + Tablet = desktop AND laptop replacement, if all you do is basic computing.

        Not sure why you didn't. Seems logical. Though I seriously doubt there will be a keyboard+mouse+charger+monitor dock for a few years, if ever. It's just not Apple's style.
    • by Lodragandraoidh (639696) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @12:15PM (#30919536) Journal

      You forget their trump card - the Apple Newton's handwriting recognition software; Newton lovers for years have been calling for Apple to release the Newton OS (including the handwriting recognition embedded in it) into the wild to keep their beloved Newtons running on new hardware as the old machines expire. Apple continued to refuse on this issue.

      Enter the new tablet. As a result I am hoping and praying that the handwriting recognition on the thing will be a juiced up version of the auto-learning handwriting recognition software from the ancient Newton. Processing power and memory availability would make that work even better than it did ~20 years ago (when even given the limits of available processing power/memory it did an amazing job to learn/decode MOST people's scrawls).

      If that were the case, then it could very well serve as a writing instrument that could decode my scribbles. Add Iphone capability (accessed through a bluetooth headset), and I would pay for that - and use the hell out of it.

  • by antifoidulus (807088) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @10:15AM (#30917580) Homepage Journal
    but if the rumors of it running the iPhone OS are true, I will pass. Not being able to easily load whatever software I want on to the thing is a big turnoff. Not to mention the class of programs that can run on the iPhone OS are pretty limited(I doubt Apple will release XCode for the tablet....)
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by BodhiCat (925309)
      Ya, two things about the iphone that limit its usability: 1. small keyboard 2. lack of a good text editing program. The tablet could solve the keyboard problem by having a bigger screen, but if it doesn't have a good text editing program, then its just an iphone/ipod-touch that's too big to put in your pocket.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by TheRaven64 (641858)
      iPhone OS can mean a variety of things. It definitely means an ARM CPU, possibly from Apple's in-house team (I've not head much from PA Semi since Apple bought them). It doesn't necessarily mean UIKit-only. There's no technical reason why you can't run AppKit apps on an iPhone, Apple just chose not to include the framework. This was done for a couple of reasons, but the most important one was to force developers to redesign their UI for the small screen, not just recompile Mac apps and call them iPhone
      • by egomaniac (105476) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @11:18AM (#30918626) Homepage

        It doesn't "definitely" mean an ARM processor any more than OS X "definitely" meant a PowerPC processor. OS X already runs on three different kinds of CPUs (ARM, PowerPC, and Intel), and it's certainly not impossible to imagine a fourth.

        Even most of the iPhone OS itself already runs just fine on Intel chips, as any developer with access to the iPhone Simulator knows. I run iPhone apps on Intel all the time (though admittedly it requires a recompile).

        Now, the new tablet will almost certainly run existing iPhone apps without modification, which either means an ARM CPU or a Rosetta-like technology to handle the emulation. I agree that the thing most likely has an ARM chip and will run existing apps natively. But we won't know for sure what chip it uses for a few more hours.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by SquirrelCrack (522382)

      Man up and learn Objective C

    • My prediction: if people perceive this as a laptop/PC replacement it will fail. Pen/touch-based PCs are a niche market for people who need to use a full-blown PC while standing up. Otherwise, if you're doing substantial writing, you need a keyboard.

      If, however, it is sucessfully pitched as an "appliance" for instant-on armchair web browsing, media playing, reading and casual gaming then, although it might not be what you want, I think it will find a market, because it does something that existing tablets*

  • So... (Score:5, Funny)

    by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @10:16AM (#30917586) Journal
    Was the McGraw-Hill guy one of Apple's planned leaks, or is he going to start waking up, sweating bullets, to 3AM phone calls from Steve Jobs?

    "Terry, you have shown all the subtlety and restraint of somebody who sells dead trees for a living. Know that your pain shall be equalled only by my serenity."

    At this point the line goes dead. Terry will never know if this is because Steve is fucking with him, or if it is just AT&T's shitty service disconnecting Steve's iPhone.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by BitwizeGHC (145393)

      You know how Obama got a special BlackBerry?

      Well, Steve gets a special iPhone.

      Talks to his own personal comms satellite. You can always hear him now.

  • Givens:

      - upgraded iPhone OS
      - ARM or custom CPU
      - purchase content through iTunes
      - ebooks will be extensions of Apple's ``LP'' format so will be multi-media w/ HTML, CSS, and nice cover graphics / icons in the interface


      - handwriting recognition
      - stylus

    Not going to happen:

      - Intel chip
      - run Mac OS X apps

    (who will be getting an Axiotron Modbook instead)

    • My thoughts too. Apple is earning too much from the App Store to make this a traditional "osx device". I would not be surprised for multitasking, but apps will come through the store.
    • by neoform (551705)
      Handwriting recognition technology/research is even further off than speech recognition. If it's included, it will surely be a stapled on feature and not something core to the product.
      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by lordholm (649770)
        The handwriting classifier tests I have seen (included a number of variants such as ANNs and SVM kernel machines), in general faired better than human beings on handwriting recognition.
    • by Sir_Lewk (967686)

      Wonderful. The portability and convience of a macbook, combined with the openness of an iphone.

      I'll take three.

  • Call me a Cynic (Score:3, Interesting)

    by COMON$ (806135) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @10:17AM (#30917610) Journal
    While I am excited about this device I theorize it will be just good enough to sell and give some ooo's and aaaahhh's but largely it will fall short of the mark so we can buy the next models. This is by design for good profitability. However I think that if Apple releases a less than complete product now, they risk the google netbook or another slate device stealing the market from them.
  • by PackMan97 (244419) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @10:19AM (#30917648) Homepage
    My predictions: 1. TV Replacement - Built in HDTV antenna , will work with Apple TV or another wireless TV spec to stream TV directly to the tablet. Sure, we know about internet TV and hulu, but I'm talking over the air TV and live TV. Killer feature for something this size. 2. Kindle Competitor - My bet is a new display type that has a very low power ambient light setting that allows the screen to be as easy on the eyes as a Kindle or other eInk reader. So, while this will be a laptop/phone hybrid, it's really going to go after the TV/Paper publishing angle for it to have mass appeal. While it can surf the web and do general laptoppy/phone things...I see it as really something that's looking to create a new market and kill netbooks and eReaders all in one swoop.
    • by delinear (991444)

      To kill netbooks it needs to not be £1,000 when it lands, otherwise it's not going to compete with a £150 netbook with a real keyboard.

      To kill e-readers it'll need something technologically revolutionary to make it easy on the eyes for prolonged usage and easy on the battery (apparently they go for a couple of weeks without a charge with WiFi disabled, considering the very best netbook battery life I've seen is 10 hours, I don't think they're going to get anywhere near that with a tablet PC no m

  • by rayharris (1571543) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @10:23AM (#30917718)

    Jason Calacanis got his tablet 10 days ago []


    - $599, $699, $799 depending on size and memory
    - iPhone OS with multitasking
    - OLED screen (no size given)
    - Verizon and ATT for 3G, WiFi
    - Front and back cameras for video conferencing
    - Thumbpad on each side for mouse gestures
    - Fingerprint scanner for login with up to five profiles
    - TV/Monitor output and wireless keyboard
    - HDTV Tuner with PVR
    - Solar panel for recharging (more a gimmick)
    - Battery life is "great" in ebook mode, 2-3 hours otherwise
    - No word on name

    • hehehe... that guy is full of it. "apple tablet connects to other tablets over wifi for gaming. There will be LAN parties with these things, people playing First person shooters"

    • by zzyzx (15139)

      It's the TV output that makes this interesting to me. Could this be an Apple TV that actually works? Add a decent digital audio out, the ability to stream from iTunes, and a decent (256-512 gigs) amount of storage space and this device becomes a lot more interesting as a portable video player.

    • by Low Ranked Craig (1327799) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @10:51AM (#30918204)

      Bio: "I'm a cereal entrepreneur: Founder of Weblogs, Inc., TechCrunch50, Silicon Alley Reporter, Engadget &"

      Mmmm. cereal.

    • by swb (14022)

      I'm just in love enough with my iPhone to buy one right away, but ONLY if I can get it without a manditory cell service.

      I see this as an around-the-house, wifi kind of device and would not haul it around (I already haul around my laptop for work and my iPhone, hard to see this replacing/replicating either).

  • The real announcement will be in 2-3 hours (depending on previous chatting and other products they want to be sure everyone knows about before the big one),and according to the rumors, will be available to the public at least in march.

    So, why hurry? Probably won't be nothing earth shattering, with high odds that will be essentially a road to approved-by-them apps, DRMd content, and not so top of the line hardware. Probably there were already announced in CES enough good and open alternatives to it.

    Of co

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      Why hurry? For some people, it's fun.

      How about a bad analogy? Compare it to the superbowl. Why speculate on how the game will go or even bother watching it? It will be over soon and you can just find out the score.

  • Rumors? Bah (Score:4, Insightful)

    by darjen (879890) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @10:24AM (#30917742)

    I just don't care much for all this speculation and rumors. Waste of time in my book. Wait for the device to come out and judge it on its merits.

    • ...judge it on its merits.

      Blasphemy! May the Lord strike thee down with a mighty vengeance! May His turtleneck-clad arm rain righteous retribution down upon thee, and may all thy children and thy children's children be cast into the fiery pits of Unpopularity!

    • Half the Internet is porn, half of it is unverified rumors. Only one tenth of it is actually useful.*

      *Yes, I know this adds up to more than one. Five percent is overlap (some porn and rumors are useful) and five percent is because since you did the last survey, traffic has gone up by 5%.

  • Major Scoop (Score:5, Funny)

    by GraZZ (9716) < minus threevowels> on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @10:25AM (#30917756) Homepage Journal

    Apple will today announce a partnership with Taco Bell to deliver tacos wirelessly through the new iTablet. This will prove to be the final nail in OLPC's coffin as the west moves to end world hunger via electronic food distribution.

    Also it will wash the dishes.

  • OFFS.

    Whilst I'm intrigued by the rumours (half of which are Apple-generated to build up hype, the other of which are created by people who think they know what's in Steve's head), comment on them is pretty pointless, and falls into the following categories:

    [ ] No one will buy this. Epic fail.

    [ ] Missed opportunity to add technology X

    [ ] I like it, but it's too expensive

    [ ] This is going to change everything.

  • Both on the same day. Those of us for whom it's only a frigging computer or only a frigging car can get on with some work.

    The funny thing is, I can remember when SAABs were above the run of middle manager mobiles, and when Apple hardware really was superior to much of the competition. But those days are long gone.

    The thing to watch - the thing that car makers and vanity goods makers don't tell you - is the percentage of their budget that is marketing. The really good stuff is the stuff that is not cheap but

  • by MikeURL (890801) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @10:35AM (#30917898) Journal
    No less a visionary than Bill Gates talked about the form factor problem years ago. An iPhone is great for what it is--something you can fit in your pocket. A desktop, at the other end, is good for what it does (large screen, hefty processing and video power, etc). Then there is the middle which is currently served by notebooks and, more recently, netbooks.

    As an "ecosystem" play it makes perfect sense for Apple to have an offering that covers each form factor. With the intro of a tablet you can have an Apple desktop, something intermediate and an iPhone-- all the current form factor bases will be covered. It makes perfect sense because it has the potential to finally leverage the strength of the iPhone, up to the tablet and finally up to the Apple desktop. Someone with all three of those devices controled by Apple would be locked in in a way that Bill G could hardly even fantasize about. I'm sure by now the marketing boys at Apple have figured this all out in excruciating detail.
  • me to take notes on it with some sort of stylus, then it's worthless to me.
    • by PhilHibbs (4537)

      You can already get an iPhone stylus: []

    • by mikael_j (106439)

      I feel the same way except instead of note-taking I want to be able to sketch/draw/paint with it, it doesn't have to be a full-fledged Painter clone but a decent digitizer (on-par with say, the old Graphire3) and something along the lines of Sketchbook Pro (damn good program with only one real shortcoming, there is no way to rotate your workspace unless you actually want to rotate the actual image which results on data loss over the long run, but it's sweet on a tablet or a Cintiq).


  • to properly use all the features.

    It is rumored you can buy it without a contract attached, I am just concerned one is still needed to access all the content available or for specific features.

    • by PhilHibbs (4537)

      If it's like the iPhone, you will be able to use it over your wifi. Does it need to be connected all the time, everywhere? Are you going to whip out your i (that's my name prediction) and go online in the middle of nowhere? No, I don't think so, and the bandwidth that you will expect on a device of this size will disappoint you on 3G. Sure, it will have 3G, and you will be able to use it, but I expect that 95% of use of this device will be in the home.

  • Didn't Apple already try this? Wasn't it called the "Newton"?
  • All the rumours point to this being an expensive device, more expensive than a Pay as you go iPhone.

    A lightweight, fast web browser you can use on the coach and with side use as an e-reader is a tempting proposition. However I would want that at a price comparable to a netbook.

    I'm not going to pay £600+ for a pure fun gadget. It would need to be a real workhorse for that price and the failings of tablets in the past have shown they just don't cut it for heavy usage.
  • If it's a full blown computer and has iChat (with built in front facing camera for video chat) then I'm in for up to $600. If it comes out of the box hamstrung with iPhone OS Appstore only apps...forget it. It wouldn't pay $300 for it. I'd love a tablet and there are a million uses I can think of for it, but if I can't go to Sourceforge and download my favorite OS X apps to run on it, it's no more useful than an iPod Touch. Regardless of any of this, if the $1,000 unsub price I've seen thrown around is
  • iPad? iSlate? iTab? iNeedOneOfThese? No, just i. That's what I think. The device will be called the i, and it will run iOS (followed by another quick lawsuit and settlement with Cisco).

  • by pydev (1683904)

    If Apple legitimizes 10" OLED tablets with capacitive screens as a product category, that's great. I really loathe the eInk readers.

    However, I still prefer Android or Chrome as the OS, over OS X.

  • I think Scott's got it right: []

  • iJust (Score:3, Funny)

    by Jhon (241832) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @10:53AM (#30918242) Homepage Journal

    iWish iCould iFford iOne.

  • I can't wait to buy one so I can sit on my couch, with my favorite TV show playing, and this puppy on my lap allowing me to read all my COLOUR FUCKING PICTURE BOOKS! Honestly, if it's a Kindle replacement, great - but I don't read pop-up books with pictures of cute dogs anymore, black and while will be fine.

    What is it good for, bar reading on the crapper - which I'm a fan of?

    If I want to browse the web I have a comfy chair and desk with a decent PC for that. Same for music, video editing, email, anything th

  • by ScottForbes (528679) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @10:55AM (#30918268) Homepage
    It'll have a stylus and handwriting recognition, and they're calling it the "Newton."
  • >Since the Apple event is this afternoon,

    Actually, it's this morning in San Francisco. The Apple Universe runs on PST. :-)

  • Tablet PCs (Score:3, Interesting)

    by MaWeiTao (908546) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @11:04AM (#30918390)

    One thing that we can be sure of is that Apple is going to tout this tablet like they've invented this type device. The people at Apple are smart in that they aren't early adopters of new technologies. Others do it first and run into the issues anyone will face with technology in it's infancy. The segments of the market generally starts petering out as those guys move onto devices and that's when Apple jumps in.

    It helps immensely that developing both hardware and software Apple has the huge advantage of good integration. With every other hardware maker they have to go with whatever is available at the time. The software developers, mainly Microsoft and Google have to partner with a hardware company. That almost always consists of an existing product being customized to their needs. Unfortunately this always results in a compromised product. There's nothing like being able to do everything in-house with teams working back and forth.

    I have a Sony tablet PC, which I got second-hand. It's the U70 if I'm not mistaken. It came out back in 04 or so, when PC makers were eager to push the technology. It runs Windows XP and performs reasonably well actually. Unfortunately, these things were mainly hindered by the OS. Instead of developing a customized OS to enhance usability they were basically making them full-fledged PCs but more compact. This generally made them a pain to operate. I suppose it was just a sign of the times, because although Sony offered various on-screen input methods the keyboard was generally not given much on-screen real estate. They were still expecting users to interact with the device using a stylus. The touchscreen itself was good but certainly doesn't compare with what is possible with the technology today. The upside was that I could connect a monitor and keyboard to the thing and use it like a regular PC.

    The device was a novelty, as a tablet today is for most people. Mine sits around collecting dust most of the time. However, for a couple of weeks I used it when I was traveling and it was great. That's where the compact size is a real asset. Being able to pull that thing out and start browsing the web is excellent. And the good thing is that because it's a PC, basically, I get a proper browsing experience and can do anything I might need to do at home or in the office. It's not a compromised experience like Smartphones provide. However, the lack of a physical keyboard is a problem if you expect to do a lot of typing with the device. I'm sure touchscreen technology has improved to the point where typing on-screen is a bit better than it used to be, but it probably still won't be great. Some of the newer Sony tablets use integrated physical keyboards, but I'm not sure if those are any good.

    The fact is, if you've got an iPhone, which most people interested in this tablet likely do, there's little need for this device. If this thing is running a version of the iPhone's OS then there's even less use for it. In my opinion a tablet should be a more portable alternative to a laptop, not a big brother to a mobile phone. Otherwise I expect these things to collect a lot of dust. I don't use my tablet PC for much of anything nowadays; I've installed automotive diagnostics software on it and even that doesn't get much use.

  • I'd like to see a tablet done right. Microsoft really hasn't delivered that yet. Maybe apple can. I've been impressed with their iPhone/iPod Touch.

    But I guess I just don't see what all the excitement is about. It's a new piece of hardware. Sure, I like gadgets and all... But folks have been frenetically hunting down any hint of rumor about this thing for a year or so.

  • Confirmed! (Score:5, Funny)

    by LeonPierre (305002) on Wednesday January 27, 2010 @11:17AM (#30918616)

    I have it on the authority of no less than 5 people closely related to the project that the new device will do no less than end world hunger, rebuild 3rd world nations, fix the energy crisis and the economy, and help those poor drowning polar bears whose homes have melted away....

    But this next piece of information you will not hear from any reputable website, as they are too afraid to publish it:

    It will do no less than make unicorns shit rainbows

    You can quote me on that.

I have a theory that it's impossible to prove anything, but I can't prove it.