iMac, mini drop before Showtime - why? | iLounge Backstage

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iMac, mini drop before Showtime - why?

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By Jeremy Horwitz

Editor-in-Chief, iLounge
Published: Wednesday, September 6, 2006
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When it comes to meriting full-fledged keynote-style events, Apple’s Mac computer upgrades have been hit and miss. Each of Apple’s new Intel machines was the subject of a special event to announce its launch, but the company has rolled out processor speed bumps with low-key announcements: basically, the new Macs just show up on the Apple web site and people talk about them.

This morning, Apple unveiled its most powerful iMac and Mac mini lineup ever - iMacs received brand new Core2Duo processors and a new 24” model, while Mac minis became dual-core across the board. It all happened without a major announcement, and with the Showtime keynote-style event planned for less than a week from now. Given that much of the world’s technology media will be gathering in San Francisco shortly, the obvious question is this: why did these new computers drop onto the radar screen before the event, rather than at it?

In Larry Angell’s words, “they must surely have enough new stuff at the event to not need these there too.” That has to be part of it. But just imagine what is going to take place at a special event where the announcement of these computers isn’t important enough to share the stage.

Another interesting point is that every Mac computer shipping today is dual-core or better, from the lowest-end minis to the top-end, quad-core Mac Pro - a major potential selling point for the entire Mac lineup (think Mac versus PC commercials with one PC and twin Macs), and possibly a feature we’ll need for upcoming Apple video applications. As we’ve noted across many prior articles and reviews, encoding speeds for MPEG-4 and H.264 videos can be atrocious on older computers; some old machines have trouble even playing these formats. Having a guaranteed second processor to spare for video encoding or playback - perhaps streaming or some other application, such as, say, running Windows at full speed - could be a big deal going forward, and one that Apple will use to make the Mac lineup that much more ubiquitous.

Strong iPod sales, best Mac lineup in history, and promises of bigger things to come? Yup. We’ve said it before and will say it again: we think this event, and its ramifications, are going to be big. iPod fans, keep your fingers crossed and your wallets at the ready.

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Comments

1

The Intel iBook (Macbook) was released without an event…

Posted by Graeme Smith on September 6, 2006 at 9:12 AM (PDT)

2

The Mac lineup looks absolutely killer right now. I don’t think it’s every been this clean and well-designed.

Posted by Ted on September 6, 2006 at 9:32 AM (PDT)

3

well designed?

Tell that to the macbook owners with burning magsafe cables, bad fans, overheating processors, varying degrees of mooing sounds, discolored cases, warped keyboards and exploding batteries.

No, they were not well-designed this time around, they were rushed to market.  If you meant only that they LOOK nice?  Well, yeah.  They LOOK nice.

Posted by stark23x on September 6, 2006 at 12:41 PM (PDT)

4

Apple Airport Projector.

I bet the farm on it and also a couple hundred thousand USD in AAPL.

Posted by Nuno Sousa on September 6, 2006 at 12:45 PM (PDT)

5

Probably because the press event on September 12th is about iPods, iTunes, Movies, maybe an Airport Express Video, etc.

Most important thing about a presentation:  Stay On Target.

Apple doesn’t just throw everything out at these press events.  “Here’s a bunch of Macs!  Here’s a bunch of iPods!  Here’s a bunch of networking gear!  Start writing!”  No, there’s a definite message Apple wants the press to pass on to the consumer.

Consider the leading rumors:  Movie Store, new iTunes, new iPods, Airport Express Video.  If these are true, you can almost write the presentation yourself.  Fitting the Macs in there would just cause a clunk.

I could see Steve mentioning, off-hand, that the Mac he’s using to demo a new iTunes is the new 24” iMac, but that’s about it.

Posted by Peter on September 6, 2006 at 1:00 PM (PDT)

6

apple skip special event for new BIGGER imac…so what thing? nothin more…apple in cellphone business? is the iphone there? straming videos with airport, an what else? movie on itunes why not…Renew Fabolous ipod touchscreen pda ready with leopard inside. A smallest computer in your pocket. (probably it’s commercial slogan no?) wink

just my thoughts…

Posted by iNandoX on September 6, 2006 at 2:20 PM (PDT)

7

the video iPod.
or
the itMVs (itune Music & Video store)
or
airport video
or all three
whatever it is i’m getting one sooner or later.

Posted by anti-luddite on September 6, 2006 at 4:02 PM (PDT)

8

I’m still crossing my fingers for an upgraded MacBook Pro.  The chances of it happening look slim, but I can dream can’t I?

Posted by bluezdood on September 7, 2006 at 4:39 AM (PDT)

9

“The Intel iBook (Macbook) was released without an event…”

Yep, same for the first iBook G4, 20-inch iMac G4, Power Mac G5 Quad, etc. This is quite frequent, I think people are reading to much into this.

Posted by Tawky Tawny on September 9, 2006 at 1:34 AM (PDT)

10

iTMS = iTunes MEDIA Store

A name change from music to media keeps the already widely known acronym and opens the door to distribution of future forms of entertainment. Media can be all encompassing.

Posted by Mitch Hale on September 11, 2006 at 11:30 AM (PDT)

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