Contrary to what I expected, there were only two major announcements at MacWorld today. The Apple TV (formerly iTV) and the iPhone (formerly… iPhone). This was a much more of a consumer orientated event than I expected. Seeing as we are at MacWorld, next to nothing was mentioned about the forth coming release of OS X called Leopard, absolutely no new Macs were announced, including the two I predicted: 8-way Mac Pro and 12″ MacBook Pro, and nothing about Adobe’s new CS3 applications or the long awaited Universal Binary version of Microsoft’s Office.
My predictions about the iPhone were correct, apart from its name. This is interesting seeing as Linksys (owned by Cisco) own the iPhone trademark, so Apple must have struck some deal with them to be able to use it. It’s much more of a fully featured product than I expected, out of all the fake mock-ups thrown around online, I don’t think anyone expected the iPod “Video” form factor, but considering what they’ve done with it, it’s pretty logical.
From what I’ve seen on the iPhone website, the interface is remarkable. This is the first real world application of multi-touch touch screens I’ve seen, and it’s on a slim phone! There are just so many great ideas rolled into one product, from the iChat style interface for text messages to a self-correcting, on-screen QWERTY keyboard.
They’ve made a brave move not to include a camera, but it keeps the phone thin and sleek. Correction: the iPhone does have a camera.
I’m very impressed and will probably be one of the first to buy them when it comes out in the UK around Q4 2007.
According to Apple this ships in two months, which is faster than I thought it would be. I love the idea of streaming video and music from iTunes on a PC or Mac. I love the 40GB local storage so you can automatically sync your iTunes library. I love the built in WiFi. I love the price of $299.
But, what about your current DVD collection? I don’t think iTunes is going to receive an upgrade that decrypts and rips your DVDs into its library, so you’re limited to either the iTunes Store movies (and even re-purchasing the movie), or rip and encode the DVD yourself, which isn’t very user friendly.
That is probably the deal breaker for me, they have to find a way to use my current DVD collection (which includes over 100 DVDs), I mean they can rip CDs, so why not DVDs? I promise not to pirate them, I mean I’ve bought the DVD already, and any DVD you can buy has been pirated already. This is not hurting the illegal pirates, but mainly me, the consumer.