Keynotes


Although I usually post this kind of thing after I watch the keynote, real life needs to take precedence. As such here are some off-the-cuff notes based on the keynote transcripts out there (notably MacRumors, which seemed to be the only one up after a while). I will update this as I go through the video later tonight.

Leopard

Someone is likely to do a tit-for-tat comparison of Leopard vs. Tiger adoption in the first year, so I’ll skip that. Suffice it to say that I’m curious as to how Apple measures this.

Time Capsule

Finally, something I can consider to be a home server solution of sorts. It’s very expensive storage-wise (remember, I bought a 1TB USB disk yesterday for €249), but if it can do more than Time Machine backups (like media sharing) it might justify the price. Need to know more, for sure.

Too bad about Time Machine still not playing along well with FileVault or supporting network shares, though.

iPhone Sales Figures

No highlight of “European“European sales – it’s got to be bad. Still, they having sold 4 million overall and the 19.5% quota in the US (regardless of what you choose to call “the smartphone market”) is pretty damn impressive, even if the 20.000 a day (on average) figure isn’t (Nokia can top that with a hand tied behind their backs).

Their not having shown anything beyond the third quarter (or the US) only makes it more obvious… No matter if they managed it only in 90 days, it speaks volumes about the state of the US smartphone market – i.e., it’s not anywhere as sophisticated as “Europe’s“European.

I’ve shown this image before, but here’s the same figures Steve showed, in a broader perspective:

As to the new features, as many people have said before, touting being able to send an SMS to multiple people is simply ridiculous. And pretty much all the other features, including Google maps location, have been available on just about any other modern smartphone for what, months now?

iPod Touch

Finally, some sense feature-wise. With 90% of the hardware being the same, it would be more than a trifle ridiculous if the software didn’t follow that trend. Plus it levels the field for developers and lessens the likelyhood of them having to reinvent the wheel to account for different base feature sets.

However, I had missed the “just $20 upgrade” for early adopters on my first pass, and I cannot avoid saying that it is yet another example of how you really, really shouldn’t play the early adopter game with Apple (regardless of whether this has something to do with the financial shenanigans that companies have to put up with or not, it pisses off your customers, period).

And no, I wasn’t really expecting any sort of hardware revision, but putting e-mail on it begs for better connectivity than spotty and unreliable Wi-Fi (and never mind the fancy Wi-Fi location features anywhere but in the US, of course).

Apple TV

So, Apple has embarked down the route of pushing more features atop some existing hardware, which is very good, and allowing the Apple TV to work solo, which is even better.

I like the new $229 price point and find the sheer number of partners they amassed to be very impressive, but the (un)availability of content for Portugal makes the Apple TV a non-starter any way I look at it (and my PS3 can do pretty much everything else already).

The neatest trick here was the ability to watch rented movies on your iPod, but then again Sony has also announced a similar feature for the PSP. It’s an inescapable trend. Even the studios get it.

So yes, it’s interesting, but ultimately still useless for most “European“European users, plus I expect this to be a “long tail” content move (i.e., 99.9% of what the studios will make available are older releases that you would go out and rent or – hopefully – have a hard time finding available on rental).

MacBook Air

The funniest thing for me was that my original assumption about it being a 13” panel (since it’s likely to be similar as existing MacBooks) was right. Plus, of course, the showmanship of sliding one from an envelope is pure Steve (on par with his introduction of the nano from his jeans pocket years ago).

Kudos to whoever came up with the TV ad, it is brilliant.

As to the rest, Apple has a surefire winner on their hands, in both price and features (I’m probably one of the few people who don’t care about it only having USB expansion or a sealed battery) – although, as usual, I would recommend waiting until they iron out the usual manufacturing niggles that plague their first-rev computer hardware for the last couple of years or so.

Oh, and if you were hoping for something along the lines of a 3-digit price, get real. Apple is in the computing business to make money, not charity.