Sunday, February 26, 2006

Fun....

As I sit here this typical Sunday evening , I am not filled with my usual foreboding feeling "the Sunday effect". This could be for one of two reasons , possibly because I'm due to go to Franky and Bennys for some munch , but also because I am feeling a slight excitement at the promise of this up and coming Tuesday (28th of February for those of you without a functioning calendar).
The reason for this excitement is perfectly simple , however unjustified it may seem , is that on Tuesday, Apple are apparently going to announce "fun products".

What are these "fun products" ? And how can the same generic white (and perhaps shiny black) styling of a laptop or MP3 player be considered fun products?

Firstly , no one knows for sure what these products are , but the ever- turning rumor mill that is , the internet- is filled with possibilities. The main site from which I have noticed these suggested things is engadget.com and needless to say, despite the usual "Appleticity" of these product suggestions and rumors I am personally quite excited.

We have
- an iPod "boombox" (which makes me think of the fresh prince , how retro)
- a video ipod , with a twist - a touchscreen. This would make sense considering Apple's interest , investment and patenting recently of touch screen techs.
-a 13" widescreen macbook which if announced I hope could have some kind of touch screen keyboard technology like the Optimus keyboard. Nevertheless of the price is right I hope this would be a good investment for the consumer.
- and finally a 17" macbook pro , nuff said.

In referral to my initial question of "how can these be considered fun??" well... I cant quite decide. For on the one hand is the excited feeling which I'm sure most people (except those who have bought the latest model released only a few months prior) get excited when a new iPod is announced , and for this one to have touch screen technology , it may just send me into a coma upon announcement. However we cannot let this excitement change the fact that it is still "just another iPod". And lets not forget those poor souls who , for Christmas and birthdays etc, have been foolish enough to purchase the new video ipod. Apple shouldn't forget those people as easily as they forgot those who bought the iPod Photo on release and for the few months after -before the release of the Video.

"Wait just one second.." I hear you think to yourself (not saying out loud for fear of being called a social recluse and a weirdo) , this seems to be a bit of a habit for Apple - of releasing products which outclass its parent items soon after the release of the originals , leaving early adopters feeling cheated and unlikely to be returning consumers or to become a companies most valuable consumer asset - the fanboy.

However I digress . The only product which is rumored and I can see personally being received by the public as "fun" is the boombox and only if marketed properly , but as we all know - Apple are very good at that game indeed. The two laptops I will avoid passing judgment on because , I'm not a laptop user or a computer stat "expert" so I will leave it unmarked in an attempt to avoid turning into another pretentious blogger who comments on things he knows nothing about!
Many people are somewhat bitter with the Apple giant , for many reasons such as the iPod battery life fiasco and the seemingly constant stream of other iPod complaints and problems , not to mention the pricing for these items of now common functionality. However perhaps we should look at the actions of Apple in a more positive light. For example if still under warranty and a fault occurs in your iPod , apple will replace it for free. And pricing is something that although people complain about it , its a companies choice how to price their products and if people are willing to pay that price then there should be no problem, unless the products do not deliver.
Finally , even those people who bought the Fifth gen iPod videos and even the iPod photo should look at the possibility of this touch screen iPod video being announced so soon in a more positive way that Apple are a company who are willing to put the technology out in the forefront as soon as possible. This can benefit the buyer because it forces other companies to match Apple and often jump one step further than the leader - pushing prices down.
To end on a more personal note , I bought my first iPod in October 2004 - Unfortunately , it broke (which was perhaps my fault for dropping it so much , but who is to judge in this topsy-turvy world??) but after quickly filling in Apple's online form and since my iPod was still under warranty they sent a guy to come collect it from UPS. I waited intently for a week or so "Ok" I thought to myself, "It says if it cannot be fixed they will replace it with one in equal aesthetic condition which is operation but not necessarily new..ahhh what the hell I'll take the risk" .
Upon receiving my iPod back, from UPS I tore open the box with glee to find a brand new iPod.
"Maybe the corporate giant is more of a BFG after all" I thought to myself..
Sadly again about a year or so after that iPod arrived , it broke. Perhaps this was once more because I was dropping it often as you do and since it was out of warranty Apple would not replace it. To this day it has not been repaired in any way whatsoever but I am not bitter because I look at it this way- I got a free , brand new iPod when really the breakage was my fault. And it is for this reason that I am very much looking forward to seeing this new iPod video if it is announced (and all the other "fun new products") and almost definitely buying one.

Michael.

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