Rumours have been abounding so much in the US press you have to hit them with a frying pan to keep them quiet.
But the reality is really dull. We are talking about a Cortex-A9 chip in the body of a giant iPhone with a 10-inch screen, and a webcam inside which will cost about $1000. Nothing to see here, move on please.
Not even Jobs’ Mob can do much with the sad, tired, tablet format other than hype it beyond its capability and hope that enough people and telco partners are daft enough to part with well earned cash to own it.
Apple already had a dismal failure with its Newton product and so has every other company that has tried to make one of the beasts. Tablets are too big to fit in your pockets and too small do do anything reasonable with.
Hype is what Apple does best. It has a huge resource in the US media where most hacks use Apple products and believe the spin that somehow they “think different”. The tame media will write shedloads of copy saying how wonderful and innovative a product is, when clearly it isn’t. Take for example the Apple TV, or the incredible cracked screened iMacs.
Apple’s tame media machine helped it launch several of its key products, such as the iPod and iPhone, where there was better competition. It is always been on hand to help the outfit as claims of cracked screens, shoddy workmanship, over inflated prices and other criticisms have been levelled at Apple.
However, we are hoping that this tablet thing might be a stunt too far. At CES we saw wall-to-wall tablets and none of them really impressed anyone. It is the same as it always has been.
Media excitement however continues as Apple attempts to release an identical product at a price nearly a third higher.
The belief is that Jobs can come down from the mountain with his tablet and the faithful will follow him to the promised land.
True, based on what has happened so far to Apple, this faith might be well-placed. But we are hoping that at some point someone is going to shout out from the crowd that Jobs is pushing a Tablet, not a cure for cancer, and everyone will stay away in droves.
Then the rather arrogant Apple might be forced to think about its product strategy a bit better and come up with products that someone wants.