It’s almost surreal, the experience surrounding reporting on Apple’s rumored tablet. Firstly, because there is no such device. Apple, in fact, denies it exists. And there is no credible third-party evidence to suggest otherwise. But that doesn’t stop supposed smart guys in technology reporting to maintain otherwise. And, to top it off, conclude it is (not will be) the coolest thing ever.
David Goldman, of CNNMoney.com, summarizes analysts as viewing Apple’s tablet as “channelling their inner-Frodo. [It will] be the one gadget to rule them all.” A fictional ring of power seems to match up well with a fictional computing device.
For example, Laura DiDio, an analyst for Information Technology Intelligence Corp. (ITIC), says “This will be the next big thing. Apple is going to wow everybody with the tablet.” Apple’s phantom tablet, according to DiDio, will have a 10-inch or 12-inch screen, high-end graphics process, Wi-Fi or 3G, a web cam, and will be able to do everything: ebook, Internet, games, movies, and music. There’ll be dozens of third-party apps available for it. Why, heck, it might even clean out the cat box and take out the trash. That’s how wonderful this device will be.
Also on the Apple tablet bandwagon is Dan Ackerman, a senior editor at CNET. According to Ackerman: “Apple will come out with the tablet and blow everyone away. Instead of taking along a Kindle and an iPod, [it] could become the device you carry with you.”
Not everyone is impressed, however. Zeus Kerravala, an analyst with Yankee Group, says such devices are only good “for ad-hoc purposes, like quick and dirty tasks. There’re not for any prolonged, high-performance use.” It’s not only praise but damnation for a product that doesn’t yet, or may ever, exist.
Reports are surfacing that indicate a certain Redmond software company could be giving OEMs access to a certain mobile OS in just a few short months. After the lackluster reception of Windows Mobile 6.5, Microsoft is looking for a hit. Anything to keep Microsoft’s mobile head above water as the iPhone, Blackberry, and Android continue to move in for the kill.
The new software is reportedly code named “Maldives”, and should be in OEMs' hot little hands in the first quarter of 2010. The final release to consumers isn’t expected until later in the third quarter. This jives nicely with earlier rumors indicating a release to manufacturing in Spring 2010. It may be a while yet before you can get a WinMo 7 device, but you can certainly expect leaked ROMs to make the scene before too long.
Fresh from the rumor mill comes word that Barnes and Noble’s upcoming eReader may be running Android. This would certainly be a nice change of pace from the fairly low-power operating environments in other eBook readers.
Android seems like a great fit for eBook readers. It already has built-in support for wireless technology, and being open-source, a custom eReader interface could easily be added on top of Android. There could even be eReader specific apps in the Android Market. Not to mention, the modding possibilities are endless. This could mean a much more open environment than the tightly controlled Kindle model Amazon has gone with. Even if it isn’t so out of the box, it is Android. Someone will come along and hack it.
Barnes and Noble has released apps for both iPhone and Blackberry, but not Android. Perhaps this is why. The mysterious eReader may be announced next month, so we could know the truth soon.
As we know, the successor to Windows 7 may already be in development. What we didn’t know is that Microsoft may be considering making a 128-bit version of the OS. It was suspected that Windows 7 would be the last version of Windows to ship a 32-bit version, but will there still be two different versions, 64 and 128-bit?
The clues came from a LinkedIn profile for one, Robert Morgan, a senior developer at Microsoft. In his profile, Morgan stated he was working on, “projects including 128bit architecture compatibility with the Windows 8 kernel and Windows 9 project plan.” There’s certainly no confirmation that Windows 8 will have 128-bit support, but Microsoft could be on the way to that technology. If not Windows 8, then maybe Windows 9.
This is all still very early speculation. We most likely won’t even see Windows 8 until at least 2011, but more likely 2012. We may see more clues in updates to Microsoft’s server products before that. Until then, keep an eye on LinkedIn. Apparently people love divulging details in their profiles.