Friday, September 07, 2007

Is That A Web Browser In Your Pocket?

So the latest interesting vapor-hardware from Apple is the iPod Touch. This $299 (8GB - $399 for 16GB) device that's based on the iPhone (minus the phone) - looks pretty interesting.

The thing isn't even shipping until later this month - and already I can hear all the non-early-adopters ripping plastic from their wallets in anticipation. It's a pretty interesting idea - take the iPhone - take out the proprietary AT&T part that doesn't work in Europe and pisses everyone off here, then add WiFi connectivity - and shebang - you have a wireless mobile platform.

Apple realizes now that it really blew it by going exclusive with AT&T with the iPhone (for "visual voicemail" capabilities) - as the many recent splashes about "unlocking" the iPhone can attest. However, the real interesting bit is having a web browser in your pocket.

What in the hell would you do with such a device? Well, it's pretty interesting to have a device that allows you to check web mail, view/edit your Google calendar and docs, get directions, and have a data-entry device (not to mention music player) all-in-one.

Not to mention that you're not tied to the crappy Edge network - but you get the full benefit of b/g WiFi at much better throughput and way less latency - and the device is about 1/2 as thick as the iPhone. There is even rumored to be a Bluetooth chip in there - although Apple has not activated it. This could, in theory, lead to Skype-like telephony applications - which I'm sure is part of the reason why it's turned off (AT&T must be sh**ting bricks at the though of free calls on an Apple device!).

I will be interesting to see what happens with the iPod Touch - hopefully it will turn into more than just an under-capacity iPod.

NOTE TO WHINY EARLY ADOPTERS: The capacity will increase and the Bluetooth chip will be turned on in future versions! So if you can't deal with it - DO NOT BUY IT yet. If you DO buy it - DO NOT WHINE when it's cheaper, better and faster in 6 months.

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