Okay, so the rumors are still piling up.  With all the talk over at Mac Rumors, it is basically inevitable that there will be some kind of update to the Mac Mini in the near future.  In other words, don’t be dumb and go buy one now unless it’s a life or death purchase.  Don’t be like me.  You see, I heard all the rumors back near the end of September about an update to the MacBooks, but did I listen?  Nope.  I went and got one anyways because I was impatient.  Now, I’ve got a great computer, but I’ve also got inferior graphics, slower ram, and a plastic shell versus a new aluminum one. A day doesn’t go by when I don’t wish that I had waited.

All this rumor chatter might be just that, rumors, but take it from me and wait.

NOTE: Mac Soda has no inside knowledge regarding an update to the Mac Mini. This article is posted strictly based off of rumors from other cites. 

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In Your Face!

October 31, 2008

Apparently, Microsoft has summoned up all it’s gumption and is setting up “I’m a PC” booths outside of Apple stores.  Inside the booth are people prepared to tell you about the great things Microsoft has to offer and then you can even make your own “I’m a PC” video.  Well, Microsoft is sure going hardcore aren’t they?  Taking the fight to the streets, guerrilla style.  So intimidating with that corporate box.  Maybe if they wanted to persuade people to stay wit

"I'm a PC" Booth

h Windows they should be going into peoples houses and fixing the viruses, spyware, crashes and other problems (like I am forced to do when ever I go home to visit my parents!). In reality this

is more for a shock factor and press reaction then for any actual results.  So in that respect, I guess they did a good job.  Their $300 million advertising sure is effective (sarcasm), but as many people have pointed out, maybe that $300 million should have been spent on actually solving their software woes.

Fat Lady Already Sang

October 31, 2008

According to reports, Opera has already completed a ‘mini’ web browser that would potentially compete with the Safari browser already provided on the iPhone and iPod Touch.  Word has it that because of the rules of the Apple App Store, the Opera browser is not being permitted for listing as a download.  

Some people are upset saying that Apple should allow more options for using the iPhone/iPod Touch. Being an iPhone 3G user, I have to say that I do have some qualms in regard to Safari.  The recently released T-Mobile G1 Android phone includes a feature with it’s web browser that enables a ‘zoom out’ view’ with a magnifying square (click for video).  The square makes it possible to view the entire webpage and scroll around until you want to drop back in to a close up of the page.  I think this option would be very useful especially when viewing webpages not really formatted for mobile devices.  

I think it’s a step backward for Apple to not allow more variety and choices for consumers, but obviously it is a step forward in keeping their product in the spotlight.

Mac Mini Update?

October 30, 2008

New Mini Mockup

Again, the rumor mills are churning, and they’re spitting out more talk about an ‘inevitable’ update to the ‘often neglected’ Mac Mini.  After reading everything they’ve been going on about, and considering how long it has been since a Mac Mini update (Aug ’07), I think that we’re probably pretty close to a revision.  What I’d really like to see for the Mac Mini is the new Nvidia graphics from the macbook, support for more ram, and maybe even a little bit of a size trimming.  You guys might say “but the mini is so tiny already!”, bah.  Smaller can always be better, especially if you’ve got limited space.  I like the Mini, but I’d like it MUCH more with a price neutral update. I say price neutral and not price reduced. This is because after anticipating a price drop in the macbook and actually seeing an increase, I’m not getting my hopes too high.

NOTE: This is Gus Loukaniko’s first Mac Soda post. He will be joining the Mac Soda team consisiting of lead blogger Mike Contaxis, editor Art Vandelay, and contributor Eric Sabourin.

The Future of the Mac

July 26, 2008

 

Mockup of Touch on the Mac

Increasing evidence has come up to support the fact that Touch Macs are coming our way, and soon. How we will see it is still up for debate. Some believe we will see a “Newton Reincarnation”, and it will be 1.5 times the size of the iPhone, with some more advanced gestures, focusing on bringing back the PDA. Some say we will see a “Mac Tablet”, which will be a device with an 10 inch, multi-touch screen, and no keyboard, but will boast compatibility with both Mac Apps, and the App Store. Finally, there is the group of people who believe that multi-touch will simply migrate to all their products, from the laptops to the cinema displays.

 

The people who believe that we will see a Newton Reincarnation are dead wrong. Period. The Newton has already been revived: its called the Safari Pad, which was morphed into the iPhone, which is available today. If you don’t want the phone, you can get an iPod Touch, which is more PDA-Like than any PDA I’ve ever seen. To sum it up, the Newton has already been reincarnated, and most of us own one already.

To those that think we will see a Mac Tablet, I think it is possible that something like this would come out, but unlikely. Why sell us a device that combines a Mac and an iPhone when you could sell us both, for more money? Unless this device is outrageously overpriced, I doubt we will see it… yet.

As for those who believe multi-touch will simply migrate over to the Macs we already have: you’re right. I am very convinced that multi-touch will become standard on the MacBook and MacBook Pro (maybe Air) by the end of Quarter 4. This is supported by the fact that Apple’s next quarter’s gross margins are predicted to be lower than was expected: Apple wants to sell these notebooks, with the more expensive multi-touch screen, at the same price point (or lower). These notebooks wouldn’t ditch the keyboard: a huge consumer backlash would result if they did so, but instead would probably be a redesign of both the MacBook and MacBook Pro, with a screen that rotated all the way back. This would give you the best of both worlds: the keyboard and mouse for typing documents and web browsing, and the multi-touch screen for photo editing and playing songs in iTunes. We would finally see all the advanced gestures which Apple filed patents for, incorporated into Mac OS X. Expect these laptops to come thinner than they are now, with some new innovations besides multi-touch, in a month or two. As for the iMacs and Cinema Displays: no multi-touch yet. I doubt that Apple would force multi-touch into the Desktops, as it would be very uncomfortable and impractical for the user. Maybe once Apple tests the waters with the laptops, they will figure out a way to make it work.

Summary: Multi-touch will indisputably (edit: possibly) come to the MacBooks in this quarter.