Looking Out from the Inside

Friday, December 30

Tis The Season for Prognostication

Just over one week until we know for certain at Macworld but it seems like the rumor mill has quieted down a bit so it's tine for predictions. Now it goes without saying that I don't have any sort of insider information. This is just me taking a lay of the land and telling you what I think the 9th'll bring us.

I think this is going to be a very media-centric Macworld. New Macs will include Intel based iBooks and Mac minis. Neither will have Firewire as Apple shifts emphasis towards USB 2.0 for consumer use and Firewire 800 for professional applications. The Mac mini will come complete with Frontrow capabilities, though it remains to be seen whether or not there will be a built in DVR solution. It will have a built in dock, though, for easy connectivity with an iPod.

Speaking of iPods much has been made of Apple's running out of 1 Gig iPod shuffles. Many have predicted that this means Apple is going to update the line with a new version of the shuffle. To these people I say bollocks. No the shuffle idea was goofy from the get go. The only people it really made sense for were people who ran with it and such and therefor didn't want a spinning hard drive strapped to their arm. Well, thing is all the benefits that were only found in the shuffle before can now be found in the nano. Suddenly the nano has lost it's niche. That's okay though. They'll be wiped aside in favor of a 1 Gig iPod nano for $149.

But that'll leave us with a two iPod lineup, something we haven't had since 2004 and the introduction of the iPod photo. Well not really because the new lineup will go back to those days with a ultra portable version (nano), a standard version (iPod), and a new enhanced version, in this case the iPod video: a brand new, fully video-centric device. I wouldn't be surprised if this new device comes with additional iTunes Video Store announcements: specifically Fox content and maybe even a subscription service for video downloads.

So there we have it, my wholly unprofessional, uninformed predictions for Macworld 2006. New iBooks and minis, iPod video, downloadable content galore. How far off am I? Guess we'll see in 10 days.

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Heading image Courtesy of Norton Sales

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