news of 2004-05-10

New PowerBook. For me, at least.

Yes, I've bought one of those shiny new PowerBooks. To be exact: A 15" Combo (1.33 GHz) model. I chose this one, because I don't really need a SuperDrive (got plenty of DVD-burners around the house) and am a fast and blind typer (so I don't need the backlit keyboard, either). Speed seems very, very good, coming from an iBook G3/800, and I'm configuring the baby right now. All seems well, so far. :)

[ written by fryke™ on 2004-05-10 at 16:18 CET ]
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'State of the Rumours' for WWDC 2004

At the very end of June, people around the world are expecting quite a few things from Apple. Let's take a look at the various rumours and the percentage we're giving them right now.

Steve Jobs will introduce a developer preview of Mac OS X 10.4/10.5, code named 'Tiger'. He'll also set the date for release (and add quite a few jokes about Longhorn while at it). Apple will try and keep their cycle for OS releases and keep it within 2004, but there are rumours that Tiger will be a more drastic OS upgrade and might take until early 2005. 100%, of course, as Apple has already announced they will talk about Tiger at WWDC.

PowerMac G5 at up to 3.0 GHz (PowerPC 970FX)
After January had passed without any expected announcements of PowerMacs at up to 2.5/2.6 GHz, the rumour world has turned back to Steve Jobs' promise of delivering PowerMacs at up to 3 GHz by Summer 2004 (a year after the introduction of the PowerMac G5). We're giving this rumour 99%, because by that time, IBM should have solved their delivery problems of higher clocked PPC 970FX chips.

New iPods
While WWDC isn't exactly the right place for it, end of June would be about the right time for the introduction of the next round of iPods - and the second generation of iPod mini. 50%.

PowerBook G5
Apple has just released the last round of PowerBook G4 - and they will last until at least September/October, when they're probably going to be replaced by the first PowerBook G5, using the low-power version of the successor to the PowerPC 970FX. But Apple has loved to surprise us, anyway, so we're still giving 25% to this rumour.

The rumour's now almost as old as a Newton revival or the infamous iWalk. If you hear about it, just forget about it. PC tablets have shown that there's no real market for them out there. While Apple would have the hardware and software knowledge to make a great tablet device, Apple's also very careful about entering new markets. The iPod was a killer product, but to enter a tiny market with a similar product won't cut it. Even more so, because iTablets would sell to Mac customers mostly and not attract and conquer the Wintel users out there. 0% for this one.

Please keep in mind that Apple is shifting their focus from MWNY/MWBO to WWDC, as it seems. And while WWDC is clearly a developer event, it gets enough attention from the press for Apple to also release consumer products at the show. We're expecting that quite a big part of Steve's keynote at WWDC will be about Apple's new hardware products, while prosumer/consumer applications will probably take almost no time there.

[ written by fryke™ on 2004-05-10 at 10:59 CET ]
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MOSR claims Mot's PPC 7460 will come...

... and cites "their most reliable sources at Motorola" for it. However: By the time FreeScale (the processor spin-off of Moto) would release those enhanced G4 processors, Apple should be using G5 processors in all but eMacs and iBooks (early 2005). While there'd still be interest for faster G4 processors until then, it seems like Apple would be stuck with 1.33 to 1.5 GHz PPC 7447/7457 until 'early 2005' - if the rumour does indeed turn out true and FreeScale would release 1.6 to 2.0 GHz G4s by then. But the gap between a 2.0 GHz iBook G4 and a PowerBook G5 of any speed beyond 2 GHz would seem a bit too big - unless pricing of the PowerBook'd go up, which we certainly don't hope.

However, MOSR's PPC predictions have not been the most accurate over the past few years, and there's still a chance that IBM will not only cater for PowerBooks but also for eMacs, iMacs and iBooks in Autumn this year, when the successor to their 970FX is expected in both a 'normal' and a low-power version - to be used in PowerMacs in January 2005 and portable Macs maybe even earlier.

[ written by fryke™ on 2004-05-10 at 10:44 CET ]
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