I just want to quickly run down what I thought of the new Apple stuff at MWSF (OK, it was almost 3 months ago), and why I bought an MBA right away.
- AppleTV Redux: Apple was desperate to boost its flagging sales and give some functionality that users actually need or want. The new software is supposedly a major improvement. For me, I'm not that thrilled. I just am not sure I need a way to move my Mac content to my TV. But then again, we don't have a very large set or watch much more than news, sports, kids shows, and the occasional Japanese drama.
- Time Capsule: As a hard drive, it's rather expensive. But you could justify the extra cost because it serves as a full fledged WiFi-n base station. There is a USB port for printer or another hard drive, as well as 3 Gigabit Ethernet ports. The problem I see is that if you purchase Time Capsule, it's an all in one solution. You are stuck with this hard drive, no matter what. Furthermore, Apple is billing this as the only wireless Time Machine solution.
Although a recent Airport firmware update finally enabled the ability to use hard drives plugged into your base station with Time Machine - Apple is stating that this feature is unsupported. Perhaps they are doing this to boost Time Capsule sales, which may not be doing very well. I notice on the Apple Store's Time Capsule page, several very poor ratings. This doesn't bode well.
- Google Maps, Mail, and more for iPod Touch: This should have been free. I paid for it, because I needed the Mail app alot, and didn't want to hack my Touch. Shame on Apple for not providing this for free, regardless of the accounting BS allowing them to do so.
- MacBook Air: I saved the best for last. F-f-f-f-finally! Apple makes a lightweight laptop! I will still maintain that they didn't need to add all the bells and whistles to make a lightweight MacBook. However, when comparing it to lightweight Wintel laptops, some that came out in response to the Air, it comes out ahead on the best balance of features. And given many of us don't need a speed demon to take our show on the road, the MBA really suits the bill. I ordered mine the night they were announced, and received it in the second week of February. In my next post, I'll give a comprehensive review of the MBA, complete with unboxing photos.
OK, there were a few other things at MWSF too - like vid rentals. And I'd have to say my prognosticating was pretty good this time around, if you check out my previous post.