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Media (Apple) Media

Apple iPod with Video and WiFi Capabilities? 225

An anonymous reader writes "Apple is currently seeking an engineer for its iPod hardware division. However, they are not looking for just any engineer. They are seeking an engineer with WiFi and Video integration experience. 'The iPod group is looking for a Hardware Engineer. Experience in the following areas is important: system integration, digital logic, SDRAM, Flash, ASIC's, processor selection, ATAPI, various communication protocols (ie: GSM, Bluetooth, IEEE 802.11, Firewire, and USB), display types and video and analog integration.'"
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Apple iPod with Video and WiFi Capabilities?

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  • What??? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 30, 2004 @02:40PM (#10110799)
    What is this, We get product ads as articles, now we get ads for people to make new products as articles so we can get more products and therefore new articles?

    My head is going to explode....
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 30, 2004 @02:40PM (#10110802)
    But to make the frontpage ad-space for Apple... is beyond me.
  • Expanded iPod (Score:5, Insightful)

    by fussili ( 720463 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @02:41PM (#10110814)
    Well, Apple's already moved into the 'home broadcast' sector with the Airport express streaming music via 802.11 protocols, so it wouldn't seem too far a stretch for them to start streaming video or DVDs around your house, perhaps onto a vPod.

    However the amount of battery consumption for such a beast would be epic.
  • by Donjo ( 797935 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @02:41PM (#10110816) Homepage Journal
    ...set the standard for this sort of thing and give other people something to copy off of so we can start getting some better products of this type. I really thought they would have jumped on this bandwagon a while ago....
  • Disinformation? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by sulli ( 195030 ) * on Monday August 30, 2004 @02:41PM (#10110818) Journal
    I wouldn't put too much stock in a job ad. If I were Apple I would add as much miscellany to the ad posting as possible to distract the competition.
  • 2 things (Score:4, Insightful)

    by StevenHenderson ( 806391 ) <stevehenderson@gmai[ ]om ['l.c' in gap]> on Monday August 30, 2004 @02:42PM (#10110823)
    Two thoughts:

    1) Why do they feel the need to complicate the iPod? People love the fact that it does one primary thing, and does it brilliantly. The iPod is expensive enough without any more frills.

    2) If they are just looking for an engineer now, just think how long before any product sees the light of day.
  • Sigh... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Rxke ( 644923 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @02:42PM (#10110834) Homepage
    Not again, please.... Macrumors had this too, and a gazillion other messageboards, I'd bet.

    Everytime Apple hires someone, people want to think it has to do something with the iPod.

    They make pretty good computers too, you know?
  • by BoldAC ( 735721 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @02:43PM (#10110846)
    Plus... there is no proof of this. This is just some blind quote from some random site! As far as we know, this guy made this up.

    I know slashdot isn't "the press" but something to suggest that this is something more than randomly created news would be interesting.

    New profit model:
    1. Write interest, speculative quote
    2. Make guesses about the quote
    3. Get slashdot to bump your article
    4. Google ads on make-up article
    5. Profit!
  • Logical Next Step (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Maestro4k ( 707634 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @02:43PM (#10110851) Journal
    This isn't too surprising, it's a logical next step to take since digital video runs a close 2nd behind digital music in terms of popularity online. It'd also be a bit of a boon to portable video devices since not having to waste power to spin a disk would give longer battery life.

    The only thing I wonder about is how the MPAA and its member companies will take this. Hopefully Apple's talked to them already or is in the process or they could find themselves with a wonderful videoPod without any way to get movies for it legally. Given their success with iTunes and the iTunes store I'm inclined to believe they have this worked out already though.

    I wasn't as excited about the iPod since I have a portable CD/Mp3 player and it works fine for me. I would be quite excited and interested in a video device though.

  • Re:Disinformation? (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 30, 2004 @02:45PM (#10110873)
    Which would completely eliminate the purpose of listing a job ad...

    Don't you list necessary skills relevant to the job, not disinformation to distract over zealous rumor mongers?
  • Re: engineer (Score:2, Insightful)

    by EmperorKagato ( 689705 ) * <> on Monday August 30, 2004 @02:47PM (#10110900) Homepage Journal
    Why only one engineer? I could understand if there is a hiring budget or time constraint(getting the new employees up to speed). If I was in charge or necessary resources for the project i would consider hiring more than just one. No telling what may happen(the Engineer's a control freak etc...)
  • It seems like a natural progression for the device. What I really want to know is what sort of WiFi they're looking into. Will it simply stream music and not video? If Apple does intend for this to stream video as well, as the "article" implies, 802.11* works well enough for audio, but the chop factor gets to be a big problem with video.

    No mention of ultra wide band in there. It would be interesting if they tried it though. The iPod might have enough buy-in with consumers to make this technology finally take off.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 30, 2004 @02:51PM (#10110939)
    bells and whistles != good device.
  • Re:2 things (Score:5, Insightful)

    by artemis67 ( 93453 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @02:52PM (#10110946)
    Considering that their Airport Extreme is geared towards wirelessly serving up music from your computer to your stereo system, making the iPod wireless is just a natural evolution.
  • Re:2 things (Score:2, Insightful)

    by s_mencer ( 239965 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @02:53PM (#10110967)
    who says they are going to complicate the iPod. perhaps they are just looking to the engineers from the iPod group to come out with a NEW device. they did a great job designing the iPod, now maybe they will design a great video device.
  • by Hollins ( 83264 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @02:59PM (#10111038) Homepage

    This particular story may be a hoax, as others have pointed out, but how could Apple not be looking to add wireless to the iPod?

    Wireless means:

    • no cables when synchronizing
    • play songs on the stereo while holding the iPod on the couch
    • share songs with people you don't know (and can't see) at the airport (ok, less likely given DRM, but cool).

    With mp3 functionality being integrated into all-in-one cellphones, Apple could also being looking into this market, which may be critical for the survival of the iPod. And who better than Apple to give a simple interface that controls all these functions? BTW, I'm willing to give out gmail invites in exchange for completed referrals at

  • Re:Disinformation? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by el-spectre ( 668104 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @03:06PM (#10111082) Journal
    Are you kidding? Have you ever seen an IT job description? Most of the ones I've seen are long lists of technologies (that are often mutually exclusive), written to be as vague as possible. I've seen junior programmer positions w/requirements that would make a Senior Architect nervous...
  • by Omega1045 ( 584264 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @03:07PM (#10111095)
    I just bought an iPod (new 20gb with the click wheel, 12 hour bat) about 3 weeks ago and I love it. It is easily the highest quality electronic device I have ever owned or used.

    That being said, do we really care about an Apple job posting? I think bluetooth or Wifi integration would be very cool in the iPod. But this story just seems down right silly. If Sony posted an ad in their Walkman division for the same skills would it be noticed? What about Rio? We don't even know what this means, and speculation before they have even gotten going on the hiring process just seems like a waste of time.

    This is pre-vaporware, if there is such a thing.

  • by calstraycat ( 320736 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @03:10PM (#10111113)
    People regularly complain about the iPod's relatively small battery capacity. A video iPod would be much worse.

    Ninety percent of the time, an iPod does nothing more than decode MP3's from a RAM cache and drive a pair of headphones.

    If you add to that a backlit color LCD, a WiFi transceiver and video decoding, you'd be lucky to get an hour's worth of play time. For that reason, I don't expect to see a video iPod any time soon.
  • Jebus... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by jayhawk88 ( 160512 ) <> on Monday August 30, 2004 @03:10PM (#10111114)'d you like to be a member of that interview team?

    "OK, we need to find someone that can take our flagship, multi-million dollar product and add a layer of function and complexity onto it not yet realized in the electronics field anywhere."

    I mean, unless the designers of the Walkman or Gameboy come strolling in, what kind of candidate is it going to take to fill this position?
  • Re:2 things (Score:3, Insightful)

    by NanoGator ( 522640 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @03:13PM (#10111146) Homepage Journal
    "1) Why do they feel the need to complicate the iPod? People love the fact that it does one primary thing, and does it brilliantly. The iPod is expensive enough without any more frills."

    a.) Complication? Eventually the market will be saturated. There is competition out there. They need to distinguish themselves to keep getting new sales. Besides, how much more complicated would it really be? It's all passive entertainment.

    b.) The iPod's not being sold at cost. They have some wiggle room on the price. Chances are, they'd provide an iTunes like service for video. In that event, they could sell the hardware at a loss.

    "2) If they are just looking for an engineer now, just think how long before any product sees the light of day."

    Need input. Maybe somebody left and theyw ant a replacement. That could mean we'd see something in 2-3 months. Maybe they need somebody just to get started, that could mean as much as 18 months. Maybe they're just testing the market. Sorry, really can't help ya here.
  • by anthonyclark ( 17109 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @03:17PM (#10111170)
    It's simple, really. /. is a privately owned site. It isn't the BBC with some kind of public charter that specifically says 'we are unbiased'.

    Plus the /. crew love apple hardware :-)

  • It would take... (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 30, 2004 @03:21PM (#10111213)
    Given the number of competitors to the iPod market (HP, Microsoft, (sur)RealNetworks, etc.), it would help a company like apple to post a fake job offer, to make the competitors think the next iPod will have all these features.

    Of course, Apple is not known for slick advertising, media savvy, and tight control of their message. The iPod group probably posted the job offer without thinking about the implications.

    Yea right. Look, people. If the job were legit, it would just say "Apple is looking for..." instead of the "iPod group is looking for...". Apple is not stupid; they like to restrict knowledge of their products. This is a red herring.
  • by Cyberllama ( 113628 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @03:25PM (#10111256)
    Keep in mind that the ipod already has a screen, the requirements listed don't necessarily mean that they plan on improving on it any. "Display types and video and analog integration . . ." knowledge would probably be necessary for the existing ipods as well.

    My guess? They'll make an ipod with a color screen, but it probably still won't do video.
  • by Billy the Mountain ( 225541 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @03:25PM (#10111258) Journal
    ...looks a whole lot more intelligent now that people have started speculating on the meaning of job postings :\

    I think that Sig I saw was correct after all: The earth's intelligence if finite yet the population is growing.

  • by proj_2501 ( 78149 ) <> on Monday August 30, 2004 @03:28PM (#10111282) Journal
    the pricing of anything other than basic human requirements is not an ethical concern.
  • by Solder Fumes ( 797270 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @03:35PM (#10111369)
    There's no way to prove that the rumor sites had anything to do with it. Maybe they didn't get any responses, and someone told HR that "we're looking for digital, analog, video, Bluetooth, WiFi, and ASIC" didn't mean find one superhuman with skills in all of those very specialized fields.
  • Still no radio? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by s7uar7 ( 746699 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @03:44PM (#10111457) Homepage
    You can keep your wi-fi and video, the main thing that puts me off buying an iPod is the lack of FM radio for listening to sport & talk radio. Seriously, how much would it cost Apple to add such a simple feature?
  • by realinvalidname ( 529939 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @04:15PM (#10111720) Homepage

    iPod group, not necessarily iPod product. It's possible that this group will evolve into a multi-faceted consumer electronics effort, but there's no point in Apple publicly acknowledging as much now. So for now, they call it the "iPod" group, after its one product.

    Or, maybe someone actually wants to watch videos on a twinkie little 2" screen.


  • Re:Disinformation? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by SpecBear ( 769433 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @04:30PM (#10111866)
    This is how things are done in the post-boom IT hiring world. You see, it works like this:

    Skillset requirements list = What we want you to do plus some buzzwords some manager read in a magazine that are supposed to be "hot" right now. Example: "Must have 3+ years experience with ASP, J2EE, MSSQL, Oracle, IIS, Apache and Photoshop."

    Position title = What we're willing to pay you. Example: "Seeking intern with the following skills..."

  • Re:2 things (Score:3, Insightful)

    by SilentChris ( 452960 ) on Monday August 30, 2004 @04:30PM (#10111875) Homepage
    "does one primary thing, and does it brilliantly"

    Meh. I own one, and while I think it's the best MP3 player on the market, I wouldn't call it "brilliant". The fact that I've had to restore on 2 different generations is reason enough to call it "great, but not perfect".
  • Re:Disinformation? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by dasmegabyte ( 267018 ) <> on Monday August 30, 2004 @05:13PM (#10112287) Homepage Journal
    C# is the conceptual child of C++ and Java. If you have three or four years of C#, another three of Java, and another three of C++, I'd take you over a guy who's had, say, 9 years of C and six months of C#. Or a background in perl or something. "10+ years of C# experience" takes less newspaper then "10+ years of programming experience in object oriented languages, at least two of which should be in C#"

    Of course, it could also be written by a complete idiot.
  • Re:Disinformation? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by dasmegabyte ( 267018 ) <> on Monday August 30, 2004 @05:17PM (#10112311) Homepage Journal
    I disagree. Apple doesn't mind being first (Firewire, Quartz Extreme, colored cases, etc). They don't mind being second or third, either. Apple develops at its own pace, using their own research which may or may not include ideas from competetors, and releases products when they're well designed and ready for prime time. If Apple is searching for a video and wireless development team now, expect to wait at least two years for a video ipod.
  • Re:2 things (Score:3, Insightful)

    by kitzilla ( 266382 ) <paperfrog AT gmail DOT com> on Monday August 30, 2004 @06:45PM (#10112968) Homepage Journal
    1) Why do they feel the need to complicate the iPod? People love the fact that it does one primary thing, and does it brilliantly. The iPod is expensive enough without any more frills.

    A Wi-Fi iPod will allow you to stream internet broadcasts. It will be the beginning of a terrestrial competitor to what we now know as radio.

    Worth doing.

Never buy from a rich salesman. -- Goldenstern