Drama on the stage of marketing. That’s what Apple loves. That’s what we’ll get. Grab your dramamine, it’s more drama.
Here’s the Mac360 list of likely and not-so likely new production introductions for the “It’s Showtime” Special Event.
The basic qualifiers are the same as most Mac-oriented web sites. We don’t predict too good. Tera had a better record than most of us.
We bandied about email messages hither and yon this weekend and came up with our Official List of Product Predictions.
You’re merely hours away from the actual news as Apple pulls the carpet out from under another competitor or two. Or not.
100% – Movies
This is one we’d be willing to lose a little money on, as it’s as close to a sure thing as you’ll get from Apple.
Movie downloads are the next logical evolution of the iTunes Music Store, the iPod with video, streaming video, and iMacs and Macs with Front Row.
Come on. The invitation to the Special Event said, “It’s Showtime.” What else beside movie downloads could that mean?
We’re in complete agreement that The Movies Are Coming, The Movies Are Coming.
There is some room for differences of opinion on pricing of said movies, quality of said movies, and selection of said movies.
But there will be movies, even if they’re iMovie clips of Steve and his children frolicking in their Pal Alto home.
How much? We’re going with $9.99 to $14.99. Quality? We’re going with high, but don’t know how or how much.
Selection? We’re going with not much to start, mostly Disney and some other studios, but the whole ecosystem package will be better touchy-feely than Amazon’s Unbox which is the latest Unevent for movies.
90% – New iPods
Personally, we don’t think the ultra cool new full screen touch pad iPods with a click wheel on the screen are ready.
So what? Steve’s not about to miss a full holiday shopping season with no refreshment in the iPod line so we’ll get it.
That’s almost a sure thing? Now, I know what you’re asking? Which iPods? How much? What specs?
You know, I’ve been asking the same questions, and here’s the basic agreement.
All iPods except the shuffle get an upgrade in memory. Both the iPod with video and the iPod nano get more memory and larger screens.
Prices may be adjusted but not much as Apple is already competitive in all areas.
80% – Airport Express Video
Tera called this one over two years ago, and it’s a logical no-brainer whose time has come.
Think of the Express Video as Airport Express for video. It’s wireless, works on Mac or Windows, and lets movies and audio from iTunes (Mac or Windows) stream to your TV set.
That’s it. It’s really simple and straightfoward. On Macs, Airport Video will work with Front Row, which makes a Mac mini with wireless more of a Media Center but not yet.
One item we’d like to see with OS X Leopard is the ability to stream your Mac’s screen to a TV, either direct or through Airport Express Video, and have it controlled by the Apple Remote. We’re all for browsing and email on a hi def widescreen LCD Sony TV.
50% – Apple LCD TVs
This rumor has gained both credibility and logical, evolutionary consideration in recent weeks.
The Mac360 staff is convinced that it’s a toss up; if not now, soon. But now is good.
Apple will launch a TV set line of 24-inch, 32-inch, and 40-inch (give or take an inch or two; we’re just eyeballing these things) ready-made for digital streaming, wireless, iTunes, and Front Row.
Have we lost our collectively freakin’ minds? Probably, but it won’t matter. Whatever Jobs and Company foist on us, we’ll buy.
That’s what Kool-Aid Kids do, right?
OK, what won’t make the cut and won’t see the light of day any time soon?
0% – MacBook/Pro Speed Bumps
Don’t count on an announcement to steal the media thunder.
The faster Intel chips called Core 2 Duo, now found in the iMac, will show up, but not yet.
0% – iPod Cell Phone
You want it. I want it. I want it so I can buy it for someone I love.
But, alas. It won’t happen this fall. Maybe next spring. If ever there was an opportunity for Steve’s “One more thing…” this would be it.
When it comes, it’ll be cool. Think cell phone with Apple design, iPod, camera, very good synchronization of PDA information tastiness, and almost affordable.
Will it show up this year? Nope. Nada. Zilch. Won’t happen. Still…
0% – Wireless iPad
This was one of Tera’s favorites for the past few years.
Think of a very large iPod with a large screen, perhaps half the size of a MacBook, touch screen, full Mac OS X, wireless built in, iSight camera, iChatCool.
And priced at just $799 sans CD/DVD. Keep dreaming. That’s as close as you’ll get unless you check out Sony’s Location Free TV.
20% – Apple Media Center
Apple will avoid a full blown Media Center for now because the DVR/PVR digital recording component is something the movie studios and TV producers hate.
El Gato’s EyeTV is cool enough but vastly over priced.
Instead, Apple will step cautiously into the media center environment and the numbers will start to take off as Mac market share grows.
What we honestly think will happen is Apple’s combbling together all the pieces for an ultra cool media center experience.
Mac mini, Front Row, wireless Airport Express Video, revamped iTunes Music/Movie Store, and new iPods.
Isn’t that enough? Only hours will tell us how close we came on the predictions. How close are you?