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Editorial: Great news! What’s next?
By David Leishman
The big news this week — and perhaps the biggest Apple news of the year — surrounds the release of the PowerMac G5s. The new chip architecture, high-speed Hyper Transport bus system, and increased RAM capacity, add up to a very powerful desktop system.
show “Apple is playing in the big leagues now.” The combination of G5 clients, Xserve products, the upcoming Panther, and Apple’s new Xcode programming environment, mean IT managers can now weigh Apple as a viable alternative for their network needs. (And just in case they’ve forgotten, more than four years ago, Apple was the first computer manufacturer to introduce “easy-open” cases that make it a snap to access and upgrade a host of Macs.)
This is all great news for folks who manage thousands of computers (and Apple), but what does it mean for “the rest of us,” who generally manage only a handful of Macs?
It means we’re another step closer to a true “digital hub.” One that’s powerful and diverse enough to handle power-hungry content creation applications; wireless, international audio/video communications; small networks; streaming media; and our recipe lists. And to do all this quietly. Apple’s attention to the details of human comfort means the G5s can reside in a living room or study while they enable other computers and devices around the house.
So what’s missing? Just a couple of key components.
On the software side, a telephony application that provides the services of an answering machine on steroids. A program that’s able to record (at least brief) iChat A/V messages, so you can see your niece blow out the birthday candles and hear the family cheer, or so your client can point out exactly where your projected flowchart needs improvement. Oh, and of course handle all your other telecom needs.
And on the hardware side, Apple needs to seamlessly integrate wireless television capabilities. Mr. Jobs has expressed his disdain for TV as a “passive media,” not worthy of Apple’s efforts. The iPod, too, is basically a passive device once you’ve programmed its content, but Apple and a zillion consumers seem to think it’s a necessary part of life.
Viewsonic’s 802.11b-enabled airPanels, which are Windows-only for now, could be easily adapted to ensure that the G5s let Junior watch Teletubbies upstairs while you work on the living room sofa.
Don’t get me wrong — these quibbles aren’t deal breakers. Apple’s new machines are great gear at competitive prices. But as one old boss used to say, “A pat on the back is just seventeen inches from a kick in the butt.”
Apple ships the G5 with Mac OS X 10.2.7
Apple on Monday introduced its newest desktop computer, the Power Mac G5, in single processor configurations of 1.6GHz and 1.8GHz, and announced that the dual processor 2GHz model will ship later this month. The G5, which Apple bills as the “world’s fastest personal computer.” was first announced at the company’s Worldwide Developers Conference in June. The new desktops ship with an updated version of Mac OS X, which takes advantage of technologies in the Power Mac G5.
InfoWorld examines Apple’s IT potential
Apple ranks 50 among 100 global brands
Apple UK cuts Cinema Display prices
Apple launches iPod-a-Day Giveaway
Forbes: Future looks good for iTunes store, iPods
Canon offers 6.3-megapixel EOS Digital Rebel
Canon announced the new EOS Digital Rebel, an auto-focus Single Lens Reflex (SLR) digital camera with 6.3-megapixel resolution. Its 1.8-inch color LCD display lets users navigate controls, including magnification and scrolling, and review images. Anticipated to ship in mid-September, the camera will be available with or without an EF 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 zoom lens ($999/$899) , and can be used with more than 50 different Canon EF lenses.
Shareware turns Nokia 3650 into ‘universal remote’
MCE offers Lucid M2X, external FireWire DVD-MULTI drive
Logitech offers new joysticks, game pad
Kodak unveils EasyShare DX6490 digital camera
Toast 6 Titanium to hit stores in September
Roxio announced that Toast 6 Titanium, a new version of its CD and DVD burning software for the Mac, will hit store shelves in early September. The new version adds new photo and video capabilities; support for networked burning; plug-and-play camcorder connectivity; support for all audio and video formats recognized by QuickTime; and can burn Video CDs, Super VCDs and DVDs all equipped with menus, buttons and chapters that can be played back on a home DVD player. It will carry a SRP of US$99.95, and users of previous versions can get a $20 mail-in rebate.
Photoshop G5 plug-in update ready for download
Emagic releases Logic Platinum 6.2, optimized for G5
AOL gets approval for advanced IM services
Quicken 2004 for Mac hits stores
HyperSpell activates spell-check in any OS X app
Around the Web
Avid CEO talks growth, competition, HDTV and G5 Macs
Digital Media Online’s in-depth interview with Avid’s David Krall explores the video tools company’s 450 percent growth in the past 12 months, its new Media Composer/Adrenaline systems, an upcoming free DV software editing app for Macs and PCs, and Avid’s plans to “leverage every ounce of processing power in the host” when Apple ships its new G5 computers.
Phone tone sales ‘to beat CD singles’ in Britain
Alan Lomax Music Archives digital transfers
Matrix Revolutions trailer released
Nokia to acquire Sega’s multiplayer technology