Apple Chronology for July through December 2010

| Hidden Dimensions

“There are many methods for predicting the future. For example, you can read horoscopes, tea leaves, tarot cards, or crystal balls. Collectively, these methods are known as 'nutty methods.' Or you can put well-researched facts into sophisticated computer models, more commonly referred to as 'a complete waste of time.'”

--Scott Adams.

I am not a big fan of prediction articles for the new year. They require lot of hubris, and, honestly, no one can really make good technical predictions, even us who follow Apple very closely. If one tries, the author and the readers waste time fretting about how good the predictions were. As a result, it's a game I don't play very much. Instead, consider this column science fiction, entertainment, wish fulfillment, whatever. It's what I'd like to see for Apple in 2010 and what I suspect may happen to others.

08 July 2010. Twenty-one major U.S. newspapers announce a new consortium, "Newspaper America," and make their content content available exclusively on the iTablet. Former newspaper Websites direct readers to WebTunes for a subscription purchase.

09 July 2010. Apple posts a press release stating that the app store now has 200,000 apps and 4 billion downloads.

12 Jul 2010. Microsoft quietly discontinues the Zune HD.

10 Aug 2010. Phil Schiller, at an on campus event in Cupertino, announces WebTunes. Purchase and access your content anywhere that you have a browser and an Internet connection. Apple stores all your purchased content in the cloud (at the North Carolina data center) guaranteed forever and dynamically adjusts bandwidth. A new 800 phone number for WebTunes customer support is created for those who experience any problem whatsoever accessing their purchased content. "Talk to a real person," Mr. Schiller says. Those who want to can still download to PC and Mac with iTunes -- for the time being.

Mini DisplayPort on the iTablet, when attached to HDMI connector, creates next generation home theater data source. "Oh, by the way, we're done with hobbies," Mr. Schiller says. "The Apple TV has been put to rest." Those who have one can continue to use it, and a software upgrade allows access to WebTunes.

31 Aug 2010. Verizon's CEO Ivan Seidenberg announces 6 million iPhone activations since 18 June. Droid sales are reported as "Acceptable."

14 Sep 2010. Apple announces the 4G iPod touch, "functionally equivalent to the iPhone 3GS Extreme in every way, except, of course, for the 2G/3G/CDMA radio." Option for 128 or 256 GB of RAM. Adds 801.11n for speedy access to WebTunes.

20 Sep 2010. Apple files suit in federal court against Comcast for throttling access to WebTunes, in violation of the FCC's Net Neutrality rules. "We have a two terabytes of indisputable network data to backup our claims," says Apple spokesperson Steve Dowling. Comcast declines to comment.

30 Sep 2010. U.S. Army announces the purchase of 500,000 iTablets for war fighters to use with GPS, maps, and communication software.

04 Oct 2010. Apple iTablet shows up on TV in White Collar, Stargate Universe, Castle, and Numb3rs.

12 Oct 2010. The next generation Intel quad core CPU quietly added to the 15-inch and 13-inch MacBook Pro. The plastic Macbook is refreshed with faster processor and available in metallic red, green or purple as well as white. 750 GB drive included. Price drops to US$699.

19 Oct 2010. At the Apple earnings report for the Sep quarter, Tim Cook announces that the iTablet appears to have smothered the historical ebb and flow of Apple's earnings for each of the four fiscal quarters. Instead, the iTablet has Apple on a monotonic, "aggressively" linear growth path for the first time.

20 October 2010. CNET is the first to announce that 1) Firefox market share exceeds that of Internet Explorer. Thanks to iTablet and 4+ million Macs sold in Mar, June and Sep quarter, Safari market share rises to 14 percent. 2) The Newspaper America consortium announces 21 million newspaper subscriptions purchased through WebTunes.

26 Oct 2010. Apple announces a new iMac, eight cores, up to 64 GB RAM, 4 TB drive, Blu-ray option, 36-inch LCD display, next generation glossy display that nevertheless reduces reflections. Comes with wireless, backlit multi-touch keyboard/trackpad combo for remote operation of iMac. iTablet can also be used to control the iMac with a software upgrade. Apple announces that they will have a major presence at CES, Jan 6-9, 2011 to demo the iTablet and 36-inch iMac.

27 October 2010. Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer temporarily hospitalized, then released for "chest pain."

15 Nov 2010. President Barack Obama seen entering a meeting of the National Security Council with an iTablet.

05 Dec 2010. Time Magazine cover story showcases Steve Jobs and iTablet: "The Year Steve Jobs Saved the Newspapers."

13 Dec 2009. Silicon Alley Insider publishes a chart showing the iPhone market share in the #1 position for all smartphones worldwide. Nokia announces a major reorganization. Tech writer Michael Gartenberg notes that the "reorganization" is mainly that of "deck chairs."

14 Dec 2010. Verizon's CEO Ivan Seidenberg predicts 15 million iPhone activations for holiday quarter.  "Still a litle behind AT&T, but not by much," he says.

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Part I, January through June, was published on Thursday, Dec 17.

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19 Comments Leave Your Own

YodaMac

I was with you until you talked about people paying for newspaper subscriptions to… virtual newspapers…!  People can do that now… and they dont’!

If reading is all the iTablet can offer me, then I’ll stick to my iPhone which fits nicely in my pocket and is with me at ALL TIMES.

John Martellaro

What?  Someone was with me?  grin

Actually, what I find interesting is that with regard to only the Apple technologies described, nothing is beyond Apple’s capabilities either now or in the short term.  No anti-gravity required.

Ion_Quest

Too much EggNoggen?  Is designing Mac-only games still a winning venture?  Cheers.

geoduck

One more to add

30 November Rob Enderle pronounces the iTablet a failure because ‘nobody I know has one” and predicts a loss for Apple in the fiscal quarter.

craigf

04 Oct 2010. Apple iTablet shows up on TV in White Collar, Stargate Universe, Castle, and Numb3rs.

You are unlikely to see Charlie and Amita solve the math problem of the week on an iTablet in October 2010 (even with a dopey sticker covering the Apple logo). Numb3rs has been effectively end-of-lifed.

http://www.thefutoncritic.com/news.aspx?id=8371

geoduck

Those who want to can still download to PC and Mac with iTunes—for the time being.

The implication is disturbing. I use my tunes while we’re not in WiFi or Cell range and so having my library only on the cloud would be a huge step back. I need my music in my device with me enough of the time that if Apple stopped offering this it would be a deal breaker, for me anyway.

Bregalad

Numb3rs has been remarkably successful for a show stuck in what has to be one of the worst time slots imaginable: Fridays at 10PM. I’ll be sad to see it go. Flashpoint is already getting stale. There are only so many hostage situations one can sit through before they all start to look the same.

As for “owning” versus “renting” music, the public has spoken. Apple understands that people want music on their devices, not streamed on demand.

I see cloud based media as an option in the future, but not as a replacement for a home media server.

I currently don’t use the cloud, even for backup copies, because uploading anything substantial like an iPhoto library takes way too long.

other side

08 July 2010. Twenty-one major U.S. newspapers announce a new consortium, “Newspaper America,” and make their content content available exclusively on the iTablet. Former newspaper Websites direct readers to WebTunes for a subscription purchase.

YIKES.  And NOT in a good way.

Exclusivity of any kind in the media is a Very Bad Thing.  What if, instead, the consortium was News Corp. and the device was a Microsoft tablet?  You get the idea.

30 Sep 2010. U.S. Army announces the purchase of 500,000 iTablets for war fighters to use with GPS, maps, and communication software.

Won’t happen.  The US will be in full cut-and-run from Iraq and Afghanistan by then, with plans for a major military reduction in the works.  The military won’t be investing in any kind of technology.

20 Sep 2010. Apple files suit in federal court against Comcast for throttling access to WebTunes, in violation of the FCC’s Net Neutrality rules. “We have a two terabytes of indisputable network data to backup our claims,” says Apple spokesperson Steve Dowling. Comcast declines to comment.

Likely.  Surprised it hasn’t happened already.

27 October 2010. Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer temporarily hospitalized, then released for “chest pain.”

Questionable.  I doubt Ballmer has enough of reality grip TO ever have a stress attack.

dhp

Do we really want any one device—Apple or not—to have exclusive rights to newspaper articles?

jecrawford

iTablet & Pocket (size & strength!)

What about weight? Scaling up the iPhone weight using screen size would make the iTablet just under 1lb. Call it 1.25lbs after beefing up the carcass for the necessary rigidity. Then scale down the MBAir’s weight and you get about 2.25lbs; take off about half a pound because the iTablet will not have a lid, and you get about 1.75lbs.

So, based on these coarse calculations, it will weigh about 1.5lbs and measure about 8.75"x5”. A deep jacket pocket might handle it, but who wears jackets these days?!

Enjoyed the 2010 wish list John. Happy Christmas & New Year.

John

John Martellaro

Clearly the intended humor of a sequence of blockbuster events followed by some pain experienced by Steve Ballmer was lost on reader other side.

iJack

The US will be in full cut-and-run from Iraq and Afghanistan by then, with plans for a major military reduction in the works.  The military won?t be investing in any kind of technology.

Well, that’s not going to happen - not in your time-frame, anyway.

In any event, the U.S.military has never not invested in new technologies.  Even when there is a pullback from major theater operations, they turn to “let’s buy off-the-shelf stuff,” as they did with GPS during and after Operation Desert Storm, and body-armor after the first few years of the current Ops - Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom.

iJack

So, based on these coarse calculations, it will weigh about 1.5lbs and measure about 8.75"x5?.

I would love to know how you did your “scaling.”  That weight is more than that of a solid paper book of the same dimensions.  If the iTablet weighs much more than half that, it won’t be much use at all.

jecrawford

@iJack

I may have made a mistake, but, as I said, I scaled the weights in proportion to the screen sizes: MBAir 13.3” (2.25lbs), iTablet 10” and iPhone 3.5” (4.8ozs).

Coarse, I know, but put’s some perspective on it.

John

Constable Odo

Nice comic piece since I know nothing in the article could be taken seriously.  If the military goes with anything, they’ll be going with Microsoft or Google, not Apple.  Well, they might buy a dozen tablets from Apple, but the remaining 499,988 will be from companies that are not known as toy companies.

There seems to be an awful lot of cheapsters in this world who don’t think it’s worth paying Apple’s prices, so I’m not exactly sure how the Apple tablet is going to get mass market consumption.  They’ll get a nice market percentage, but I’d have to doubt majority market share unless this tablet can absolutely work miracles.  Still, I wonder why all of a sudden almost nobody wants to pay $800 for a device that could do so many things.  The original IBM AT cost about $1500 and plenty were sold, yet now, people are bitching and only want to pay about $400 for a device that can do probably a 100X more.

Someone had an issue that the tablet device might be too heavy.  Crap, students are probably walking around with 20 lbs. of books on their way to school.  Adults really need to get much more exercise if they can’t hold 1 lb. for a sustained period of time.  I doubt any company can build a solid, functional tablet out of balsa wood.

gslusher

I may have made a mistake, but, as I said, I scaled the weights in proportion to the screen sizes: MBAir 13.3? (2.25lbs), iTablet 10? and iPhone 3.5? (4.8ozs).

Coarse, I know, but put?s some perspective on it.

Another data point: the Asus Eee PC 10” netbooks weigh about 2.4 lb, about half the weight of my 12” PowerBook G4.

Chaz

I think John is saying that newspapers will still be accessible via the web, AND the expected iTablet, just that Apple will bring the publishers together under an electronic “newsstand” web store where you will have to purchase either subscriptions or individual months, day or week publication.  Just like App store, Apple will run it, take 30% and pass off the rest to the publishers.

Yes, this will save the newspaper industry.  HOPEFULLY, it will allow that industry to right itself and start to publish stuff worthy of reading.

(Maybe Newsweek can actually hire a couple more reporters.  Tired of the same old perspective there)

“I am so over Tiger Woods based stories already.

John Martellaro

Since this was a science fiction piece, I took some liberties. I suggested that just 21 newspapers would hang their hat on the iTablet exclusively, but there are still hundreds (I think) of other newspapers out there that wouldn’t agree to that.  Also, in part I, i suggested that Rupert Murdoch would never settle for an exclusive agreement.

Aside from the frivolity of the chronology, I really do suspect that there will a lot of wild experimentation as various pubs try to grab the brass ring. As we know, S.J. likes to hang the brass ring out there for any takers.  Who would wager that Steve’s giant money machine is wrong?

iJack

OK then. - Let’s just try and figure out which papers are included in the lucky 21.  And I assume this means dailies.

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