The Mac Observer

Skip navigational links

You're viewing an article in TMO's historic archive vault. Here, we've preserved the comments and how the site looked along with the article. Use this link to view the article on our current site:
Analyst Offers Macworld Expo Predictions

Analyst Offers Macworld Expo Predictions

by , 8:15 AM EST, January 4th, 2007

Piper Jaffray's Gene Munster took a look at the pre-Macworld Expo rumors, and offers his odds on what Apple Computer will surprise us with on January 9. He thinks that new product announcements could include an Apple-branded cell phone, a new video capable iPod, and the release of the iTV home entertainment appliance. Announcing any of these products at Macworld Expo would be a positive for Apple, but not announcing a cell phone would be seen as a negative.

Mr. Munster broke out his certainty ranking system to rate the likelihood of products and features. A 10 is highly likely, and a 1 indicates extremely unlikely.

Apple Cell Phone
Apple's cell phone entering production in the next 2 to 6 months gets a 9. A candy-bar form factor version of the phone within the next 6 to 12 months also gets a 9.

A smartphone version of Apple's cell phone with an integrated keyboard has a likelihood of 7.

A radio-transparent cell phone casing gets only a 3, and "iChat Mobile" video and instant messaging seems unlikely with its 2 ranking. Including an iSight camera, however, along with 4GB or 8GB of storage has a higher likelihood with a 6 out of 10 ranking.

Mr. Munster commented "Just as Apple waited several years to enter the MP3 market, we believe the company is well-positioned to enter the phone market now that early music-enabled handsets have tested the waters. Apple will differentiate itself by offering iTunes integration on Macs and PCs, and by leveraging its expertise in software engineering for media playing devices."

New iPod
Seeing a new widescreen iPod with a touch-sensitive and wireless features in the next 2 to 6 months is fairly likely with a 7 out of 10 ranking.

"According to several Apple patents, along with word from component suppliers, Apple is working on a 6th generation widescreen iPod that could feature touch-screen capability," he said. "We believe that the new iPod will be a significant improvement to the 5th generation iPod, as the device becomes more video-centric. As such, the iPod line would feature small music-centric and 'wearable' players as well as a larger music player with more video-centric features."

Apple announced its home entertainment center hub that links the music and videos on your computer to your TV in September 2006. Mr. Munster gives a 10 out of 10 chance that we'll see the iTV device in the next 2 to 6 months, and that it will have features that weren't previously announced.

"We believe Apple could release an improved model with an internal hard disk drive," Mr. Munster said. "Downloadable movies average about 1.5GB each on iTunes and one way that Apple can ease capacity restrictions is to add hard drive space to the iTV."

The likelihood that we'll see Mac OS X 10.5 released at Macworld only gets a 3. It's also unlikely that we'll see the rumored ultra-portable 12-inch MacBook Pro in the next 12 to 18 months - Mr. Munster ranks that with a 4.

Mr. Munster added "Another possibility is that of a touch-screen tablet Mac. Rather than marketing the tablet computer to business users (like tablet PCs), we believe that a tablet Mac would be targeted at home users desiring t wirelessly control media content. Again, this rumor is 'a stretch' because we have not seen any hard evidence, other than several patent applications, that point to the release of a tablet Mac."

Apple Computer has already fueled specualtion over what CEO Steve Jobs will announce during his keynote presentation at Macworld Expo next week. The company's Web site now sports a graphic that states "The first 30 years were just the beginning. Welcome to 2007."

Apple stock is currently trading at US$84.18, up 0.38 (0.45%).

If you are interested in Apple's stock, join our forum members in the Apple Finance Boards, a moderated forum for Apple Investors and people who are interested in Apple's financial dealings. For other stories regarding Apple's stock activity, visit our updated Apple Stock Watch Special Report.


Recent TMO Headlines - Updated February 25th

Fri, 10:17 PM
Stanford's 'Developing iOS 10 Apps with Swift' free on iTunes U
Fri, 8:20 PM
iPhone Screen Repairs By Third Parties Now Get Some Warranty Coverage
Fri, 7:56 PM
Amazon Goes with First Amendment to Protect Alexa Recordings
Fri, 6:28 PM
An App that Automatically Notifies People of Your Trip Progress
Fri, 5:51 PM
Apple and Silicon Valley Struggle to Navigate Trump's Waters
Fri, 5:43 PM
The Thinking Behind a Female Voice for Siri
Fri, 5:13 PM
Enjoy Outdoors Activities With These Top 5 iPhone Apps
Fri, 2:01 PM
Amazon's Echo First Amendment Rights Fight - TMO Daily Observations 2017-02-24
Fri, 10:01 AM
iTunes Remote App gets Two-Factor Authentication Support
Fri, 9:00 AM
Disk Drill PRO 3 for Mac for $34.99
Thu, 6:33 PM
7 Reasons For Apple to Discontinue the Mac Pro
Thu, 6:02 PM
Can WALTR 2 Really Be Your iTunes Replacement?
  • __________
  • Buy Stuff, Support TMO!
  • Podcast: Mac Geek Gab
  • Podcast: Apple Weekly Report
  • TMO on Twitter!