Yesterday, Apple rolled out revamped PowerBooks and iBooks. And next Tuesday the company will unveil a “breakthrough digital device,” according to an invitation received by MacCentral for the event.
The interesting thing is that the new device won’t be a Mac. It will, however, fit into Apple’s vision of the Mac platform as the heart of a digital hub for a digital lifestyle, the invite read.
In outlining Apple’s vision of the future, Apple CEO Steve Jobs sees the company’s hardware and software serving as the “hub” of a “digital lifestyle.” The intriguing part of the Apple-Jobs vision is the acknowledgement that digital devices will be increasingly important while denying that the personal computer is heading the way of the dinosaur. Instead, Apple thinks the traditional computer will get a new lease on life.
“We don’t think the personal computer is dying or moving away from the center,” Jobs has said. “We think the personal computer is on the threshold of entering its third great age [the first two being the ‘Age of Productivity’ and the ‘Age of the Internet’]: the ‘Age of the Digital Lifestyle.’ This age is spawned by the proliferation of digital devices everywhere: CD players, MP3 players, cell phones, handheld organizers, digital cameras, digital camcorders and more. We’re confident that the Mac can be the hub of this new digital lifestyle by adding value to these other devices.”
Jobs said Apple hardware could accomplish this goal because Macs run complex applications, have big screens for better user interfaces, burn disks, offer inexpensive storage and can access the Internet “at every conceivable speed.” These are things that the other, smaller, less powerful digital devices can’t do, he added.
Apple’s “digital hub” approach will have both hardware and software components. The software components include iTunes, iMovie and iDVD. The hardware area has included desktop and portable Macs. Apparently, the hardware line will expand on Oct. 23 with the “breakthrough digital device.”