Beta

Slashdot: News for Nerds

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Mac Mini and iPod Hi-Fi Over-Hyped?

Zonk posted more than 8 years ago | from the isn't-everything-nowadays dept.

317

RX8 writes "Analyst Michael Greeson takes a look at Apple's new products, the Mac Mini (Intel based) and iPod Hi-Fi and explains why they were over-hyped and how that can damage Apple. Michael explains that when you are 'an industry innovator - when your products fall short of being truly original, your own success becomes your worst enemy.'" Update: 03/04 00:07 GMT by Z : As many posters have pointed out, the article here has little to do with the synopsis. This article is mostly about the design for the mac mini and its remote, which is a fairly interesting topic. Mea culpa, folks.

cancel ×

317 comments

Amateur Hour (5, Informative)

American AC in Paris (230456) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845312)

Zonk, the Slashdot headline and summary have virtually nothing to do with the article.

For one, Greeson specifically states that he's not going to go into whether or not Apple overhyped their latest releases; by the tone he takes, one suspects that he sees the grumbling of "Apple's fanatical base" as a largely unavoidable cost of taking innovative risks. Beyond that, though, the focus of his article is on the remote control included with the mini; how it is simultaneously easy-to-use and powerful--he calls it "sophisticated simplicity"; and how he hopes and expects future devices to try to mimic Apple's design choice.

Instead, this summary takes a throwaway bit from the introduction and completely ignores the entire point of Mr. Greeson's article. The summary goes on to state that Mr Greeson thinks Apple over-hyped their latest product release--even though he explicitly says otherwise in his article. If I were Mr. Greeson, I'd be more than a little peeved that you'd so fundamentally butchered and misrepresented my work. Not even two minutes of the most basic editorial work would have revealed this.

You've been trolled, Zonk, and now it falls to us to clear the air. Of course, the joke's on us, too: we're not the ones who are getting paid to do the job in the first place.

Re:Amateur Hour (3, Insightful)

stupidfoo (836212) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845392)

Zonk's an idiot. I think this has been fairly well established by now.

Re:Amateur Hour (-1, Offtopic)

stupidfoo (836212) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845423)

Zonk's an idiot

And so am I.

ZONK IS A SLACK-JAWED FAGGOT (0, Flamebait)

CmdrTaco (troll) (578383) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845410)

He's too busy sucking cock to do much more than reach his fat greasy hand up from under cmdrtaco's desk mash the keyboard until a story appears on the mainpage.

Re:Amateur Hour (2, Funny)

P3NIS_CLEAVER (860022) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845426)

Are you new here? At least it's not a dupe.

Re:Amateur Hour (4, Funny)

geekoid (135745) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845769)

...yet

Re:Amateur Hour (1)

cornface (900179) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845452)

I know I'm totally shocked.

Re:Amateur Hour (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14845747)

An apple product over-hyped? NO WAY! Could never happen!

Re:Amateur Hour (3, Funny)

Kaellenn (540133) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845466)

that's what I get for reading the article at a "leisurely" pace. By the time I'm ready to whip out the flamethrower, this has already been modded to 5...

Well, at least I'm not the only one who was frustrated.

Re:Amateur Hour (3, Funny)

happyemoticon (543015) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845524)

Well, you've got to learn from the article submitters and moderates and only read the first paragraph of every submission, and then see how you can best angle that to stir up discontent between Mac using /.ers and Mac-hating /.ers.

Seriously, that summary is absurd. It might as well have read, "Apple Not As Cool As It Thinks, Study Shows," with bar graphs representing how cool Apple thinks it is (10), how cool it actually is (6), and how cool Steve Jobs thinks Apple is (und).

Re:Amateur Hour (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14845666)

Just use this handy graph that Apple has provided:

    X
    X
    X
  X X X
X X X X X
X X X X X
X X X X X

M S A D S
i a p e o
c m p l n
r s l l y
o u e
s n
o g
f
t

Re:Amateur Hour (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14845671)



It's been awhile, but I've made calls for elections (or simply changes) replacing some of the less-than-satisfactory "editors" and suddenly found myself "locked out".

When I sent appropriate private email and pointed out I had not committed any ad-hominem attacks, but instead mentioning a group of unnamed presons, I was mysteriously restored.


I'm certain the claim would be the volume of submitted material is likely larger than many would like to believe, but when your daily volume consists of six newspapers/day (and any of the magazines which arrive at home) + everything else that goes on in a normal day, figuring out what belongs & what doesn't is simple and the spelling, grammar, and punctuation isn't difficult. It also decreases the number of repeats.


Re:Amateur Hour (2, Funny)

QuietLagoon (813062) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845577)

At least it shows that some people actually RFA. :)

Zonk, your fired!!! (3, Informative)

Enrique1218 (603187) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845669)

I thought I was I going stupid there for a moment. I read the article and it had nothing with the slashdot title. If anything, it seem to praise Apple. But I realized from post, it wasn't I going stupid- it was Zonk. Zonk, you need to buck up man and pay attention!!!

Re:Zonk, your fired!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14845728)

Just like you were from grade 7 english. Your != You are

Re:Zonk, your fired!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14845848)


Subject: ...your...

c/your/you're/

You aren't going to get anywhere fixing the problem when you don't do any better.


Re:Amateur Hour (1)

alex_guy_CA (748887) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845684)

Thank you. My point exactly. 6 button mouse fugue does not equal () hype summary.

Re:Amateur Hour (4, Insightful)

tooth (111958) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845852)

I'm sick of Zonk articles too, and the come in waves, 6 at a time. I notice it as the times when I read /. are the time when he posts a heap of articles. Can't there be some more effort put into getting this right?

New revision (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14845317)

Hopefully we'll see a new revision Mac Mini's with an improved graphics chip later on, perhaps a ATI X1300?

Re:New revision (1, Interesting)

jest3r (458429) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845663)

The video card in the new Mini is weak. I have the same chipset in my HP S7320 slimline PC and it gets horrible framerates. Major chopfest with Doom3 ... even gets choppy with WoW ... Most people want to play games at home so I wonder why Appleisn;t using something a bit better?

Re:New revision (1)

soupdevil (587476) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845724)

The video in the new Mini is aimed at video playback through its DVI port, and for that, it is quite nice, with hardware decoding. For games, you're right. Buy an XBox.

Re:New revision (1)

nolife (233813) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845849)

For games, you're right. Buy an XBox.

For games, do not by a Mac mini.

New form factor too (1)

kuwan (443684) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845846)

Well, from what I've read from the people that have taken the new Intel Mini apart it doesn't sound like there's room for an add-on graphics chip. So Apple would probably have to change the form factor in order to add a better graphics chip.

It's kind of ironic though. One of Apple's selling points (Google Cache) [64.233.179.104] for the PPC Mini was that it didn't have an integrated graphics card:

Go ahead, just try to play Halo on a budget PC. Most say they're good for 2D games only. That's because an "integrated Intel graphics" chip steals power from the CPU and siphons off memory from system-level RAM. You'd have to buy an extra card to get the graphics performance of Mac mini, and some cheaper PCs don't even have an open slot to let you add one. [emphasis mine]

Oh well, a bit of a step backwards on the graphics front. But a bunch of Core Duo Minis would make a great, inexpensive Xcode build farm.

Wait... (3, Informative)

DrEldarion (114072) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845320)

That's not what the article is about at all, really. He even comes out and specifically SAYS For the purpose of this essay, let's forget about whether Apple failed to live up to its own PR.

The article is praise about its remote.

Re:Wait... (-1, Offtopic)

Mr_Matt (225037) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845440)

Also, the author is unable to spell "Occam's Razor", although they are able to parenthetically explain that "Ockham's Razor" is also known as the 'principle of parsimony' with only a hint of patronization.

Ahh, having one's intelligence insulted by idiots - what a way to wrap up the week. :)

Re:Wait... (1, Informative)

Golias (176380) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845505)

Both spellings are correct.

Don't take my word for it. Look at line 1 of the wiki:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Occam's_razor [wikipedia.org]

Re:Wait... (2, Informative)

rhombic (140326) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845530)

Maybe you should check your references before calling someone an idiot for spelling it "Ockham"? See the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy [stanford.edu] , for instance (see point 2). Occam is the French spelling of the very English name of William of Ockham. Maybe the patronization was justified?

Re:Wait... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14845705)

After reading the references, I think it should be spelled "okm".

-- just another okm razzer

Re:Wait... (-1, Troll)

Mr_Matt (225037) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845811)

Ahh, check that out. I learned something today. Occam's Razor is also spelled as Ockham's Razor. I've somehow managed to make it through thirty years without seeing it spelled that way, but hey, I learned something. Consider me informed.

Maybe the patronization was justified?

Must be nice to have never made a mistake in your whole fucking life, eh asshole?

Re:Wait... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14845876)

dude, you got called out by someone for calling out another person and being wrong.

not only did you call them out, you also said Ahh, having one's intelligence insulted by idiots - what a way to wrap up the week. :)

yeah, he was definetly the asshole there.

Re:Wait... (1)

Sulihin (612608) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845540)

Ockham's Razor is an accepted alternate spelling of the principle, as the person Occam's Razor is attributed to is William of Ockham. People in glass houses or such?

Re:Wait... (0, Offtopic)

AndersOSU (873247) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845768)

Shouldn't the paranthetical (principle of parsimony) be a more common term than what it is describing? If I didn't know what Ockham's Razor was I'd be more confused, not less by parsimony...

But I guess while you're patronizing you might as well do it up right.

The article's not about hype at all... (2, Informative)

Space cowboy (13680) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845321)

For the purpose of this essay, let's forget about whether Apple failed to live up to its own PR. In fact, let's ignore the PR strategy altogether and focus on one of the product announcements: the new Mac Minis.
... and in any event, what hype is it that we're talking about here ? All Apple did was issue invitations (with no details on what was about to be disclosed) to a bunch of people in the press. In no way, shape, or form is this "hype" (verb: to promote or publicize a product or idea intensively, often exaggerating its importance or benefits) - it was an invite to a product release (with no details of the product) for crying out loud!

As soon as the invitations hit the 'net, all sorts of rumours (note: these are *not* Apple-created) surface. Some people publicly projected their own desires onto the event, irrespective of how likely it is, and then these self-same people get all disappointed when their fantasy doesn't come true. These people need to (a) get out more, (b) have more sex, and (c) move on from the mental state of a five-year-old ("Me want", "Me want", "Me want"). [aside: note that (c), as applied to (b), is more likely after (a). Just a hint to get you started...]

The fault here lies solely, completely, and utterly with those who raise Apple on too high a pedestal. There's only so much cool stuff any one company can make (although I thought the new mini *was* pretty cool, personally).

Simon.

Re:The article's not about hype at all... (1)

devphaeton (695736) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845617)

Well said.

There are a lot of "communities" like this, but the most loony and entertaining to watch are the rabid Mac Lifers.

This isn't all Mac users, but enough of them ;)

Re:The article's not about hype at all... (1)

bj8rn (583532) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845711)

... and in any event, what hype is it that we're talking about here ?

To a fanboy, the "conspicious" silence says more than a large advertising campaign ("Out Soon!" "Behold!" "Prepare To See Things You've Never Seen Before!") ever could. It's sort of like some conspiracy theories: Apple's not telling anyone anything (yet) or hyping anything, therefore they must be hiding something.

Re:The article's not about hype at all... (1)

bkazez (851595) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845736)

Yet an Apple invitation that's vague but promises "fun new products" certainly does "promote or publicize...intensively," because from past experience Apple fans know that an understated invitation could mean incredible things.

Surprised? (0, Troll)

devphaeton (695736) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845328)

If it weren't hyped and pumped up with 3-word soundbytes prime for spoonfeeding... ...would it still be Apple?

Snoozer (1)

Electric Eye (5518) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845336)

This announcement shouldn't even have been an event. New McMini? Yeah, that was inevitable. An iPod ghetto blaster? Kinda goes against the whole portable movement, doesn't it? And as far as "innovative" goes, well, it's a box of speakers. We've been able toconnect iPods to various speaker systems for 3 years now.

But, then again, Apple wasn't the only one who hyped this up. Didn't the rumor sites all predict a bigger video iPod?

Re:Snoozer (0, Offtopic)

jest3r (458429) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845570)

Ghetto blaster is no longer a politically correct term .. boombox would be more appropriate.

Re:Snoozer (2, Informative)

Golias (176380) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845594)

An iPod ghetto blaster? Kinda goes against the whole portable movement, doesn't it?

Not really. It runs on d-cells just like any other portable boom-box.

That said, it has several strikes against it:

1. It costs to much to take it with you while tubing down the Apple river or to a tailgate party at a St. Paul Saints game. For the kind of places one usually hauls a boom box, you want to bring something that won't make you break down in tears if it gets run over by a car or smashed against rocks.

2. It's called a "Hi-Fi" in spite of sounding like a piece of turd fished out of the Bose washroom. Seriously. Go listen to it, then go to your mall's Bose outlet and compare. Same goofy sound; different branding.

3. The iPod rests gingerly on top of it instead of loading into a nice, sturdy enclosure.

4. There's no top handle, so carrying it around with one hand is kind of awkward.

Jobs reality distortion field (1, Troll)

P3NIS_CLEAVER (860022) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845354)

Is the Jobs reality distortion field hype, or does he realy change reality?

Re:Jobs reality distortion field (2, Informative)

TaoTehChing (954321) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845429)

"Frequency response: 53Hz to 16kHz ± 3 dB" should never be regarded as hi-fi, Apple must have picked some really cheap drivers, especially for the high end. I don't have Karma to burn, but I must say that this really makes me question Apples supposed superior engineering.

Re:Jobs reality distortion field (1)

Golias (176380) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845633)

After listening to it, I'm convinced that they are targeting the Bose market, because only people who mistake Bose gear for high fidelity audio will like how this thing sounds.

The new mini kicks all kinds of ass, but the iPod Hi-Fi is a dud.

(Not that they won't sell a ton of them... I'm just saying that I'm not impressed by it.)

Re:Jobs reality distortion field (1)

19thNervousBreakdown (768619) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845777)

Meh, doesn't much matter when you're playing MP3s on it. Nobody will even notice, and since compressed music gets squirrly around those ranges anyway it'll probably end up sounding better as long as they have high/low-pass filtering to avoid the distortion at the edges of the drivers' response.

Sure as hell isn't worth $350 though.

Re:Jobs reality distortion field (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14845473)

he doesnt actually change reality, he just distorts it, kinda like a cloaking device. bending light so that you see through a thing does not change the reality that its still there.

like distorting reality and saying "macs are the best computers ever!" at macworld while in reality, theyre really not that great.

Wait just a minute (1, Insightful)

Michalson (638911) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845361)

You mean to tell me that advertising a screenless MP3 player with random mode as a life changing revolution could be a bit over the top?

/Doesn't own a Shuffle
//But already owned another cheap generic brand no-feature MP3 player with the same chipset

Re:Wait just a minute (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14845438)

/Doesn't own a Shuffle
//But already owned another cheap generic brand no-feature MP3 player with the same chipset

this is not fark. do not use slash, slash-slash, etc. here.

The old "gifted child" syndrome? (3, Interesting)

vought (160908) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845364)

So, he seems to be saying that like the "gifted" children that show higher interest and aptitude in certain areas, Apple must do better because they're clearly capable of it.

I've seen lots of kids drop out of college because of reasoning like that from their parents. They get discouraged and stop trying, because they are capable of doing better, even when they aren't interested in "doing better" at the time.

Just seems counter productive to expect something groundbreaking from Apple everytime there's an annoucement. Apple didn't overhype it - the press did. The rumors sites did. Apple will display innovation when they have something innovative to ship - they never promised that the Intel-based machines would be anything groundbreaking - just Macs with Intel processors - which is exactly what they are, and more (Front Row).

So don't expect the gifted child of the computer industry to display brilliance in every assignment. That's not what being "gifted" about - even Ansel Adams made more average-level work than masterpieces.

Re:The old "gifted child" syndrome? (1)

P3NIS_CLEAVER (860022) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845400)

It's called product cycles. Yeah, the Imac will never be as cool as when it first came out, and it never will. Should they stop selling it?

Re:The old "gifted child" syndrome? (2, Interesting)

pilkul (667659) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845806)

I've seen lots of kids drop out of college because of reasoning like that from their parents.

I'm reminded of this this study [nagc.org] estimating that perhaps 18 to 25% of American gifted and talented students drop out of high school.

How is this overhyped? (5, Insightful)

Matey-O (518004) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845373)

Apple held an event in it's 'Cafeteria(*)' fer chrissakes!

When they pull out the stops, it isn't in an event of this level.

Overpriced leather case aside, the stuff they rolled out was worth holding a minor event over...That's what this was, a minor event.

*=yeah, it wasn't the Cafeteria, but it was held in a location they already own, it's cheap floorspace to hold an announcement.

Umm? (2, Funny)

Christopher_G_Lewis (260977) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845375)

I read the article (really, I did!) and it mostly talked about the new remote and how cool a 6 button remote is.

Kind of neat, but what about channels with 7 8 9 and 0?

What are these "Channels" (2, Informative)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845547)

When you are simply downloading media from ITMS (and other sources), what use do you have for "channels".

Apple is bypassing the whole legacy model of Broadcast that is so ingraned, even technical people think we need "channels" instead of browsing for video content like we browse the web. Do you visit a web page on channel 8, then browse it for 30 minutes only to have it suddenly vanish?

The Mac MINI is primarily a home media center, not a PVR (though you can use it as such).

Re:What are these "Channels" (1)

Christopher_G_Lewis (260977) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845741)

Maybe a conspiracy against MSDN's Channel 9 ...

Re:What are these "Channels" (2, Interesting)

mmkkbb (816035) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845817)

The concept of Channels is for when there is so much content that anyone who is not 100% dedicated to evaluating it is overwhelmed.

Is it just me? (1)

AndersOSU (873247) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845734)

Did anyone else spend half the article trying to guess what CE stands for?

(I came to the conclusion, eventually, that it is Consumer Electronics - am I right?)

Maybe overhyped for the Mac fanboys... (5, Interesting)

ImaNihilist (889325) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845376)

But not for us "normies." For the first time I'm really looking at Apple products. It's like I want them all. I don't own a single Apple product, and yet I spend forever on their store.

I'm thinking about taking out my school loans just to buy something cool. I think both the Mac mini and the iPod Hi-Fi are totally sweet.

Re:Maybe overhyped for the Mac fanboys... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14845801)

ROTFL!

I don't know about being the "normies" standard, but there of those of us laughing at the pathetic announcments and the "OMG I AM HAVING AN ORGAIZZZIM!!11212!@##21 comments by the fanboys.

But maybe we are out of the "norm" if we think that their $350 speaker and $100 ipod case are absurdly priced and not worth what they are charging you.

Over-hyped? Did the submitter read the article? (2, Informative)

nvrrobx (71970) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845382)

Maybe I missed something, but how does this go about explaining how they were over-hyped?

He explains why the 6 button remote is a great idea.

The article clearly says:

For the purpose of this essay, let's forget about whether Apple failed to live up to its own PR. In fact, let's ignore the PR strategy altogether and focus on one of the product announcements: the new Mac Minis.

Mod article down (2)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845384)

(Score:-1, Offtopic)

Re:Mod article down (2, Informative)

truthsearch (249536) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845437)

Or subscribe and tag it [slashdot.org] .

They screwed the pooch on the hi-fi (4, Interesting)

andyring (100627) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845389)

Apple screwed the pooch on the iPod Hi-Fi. Sure, it looks all sleek and such, but it's priced WAY too high. $349 will get you a "home theater in a box" that will sound quite a bit better and give you a ton more flexibility, not to mention the ever-elusive AM/FM radio (not that people listen to it anyway). This thing is really no different from a $99 "boom box" type stereo with an AUX input, except that it charges your iPod, and costs $250 more.

It's my belief that if Apple TRULY wanted market share, they'd follow Microsoft's lead on the Xbox and sell it at a loss but then make it up in other ways. If they sold the Mac Mini for $299 or even $349, they'd sell millions overnight, still make money on dot-Mac, iWork, keyboards, iTunes songs, iPods, etc. And they'd get a hugely larger share of the market. Then, when mom and dad send junior off to college, give him the mini and buy an iMac for at home, or buy junior an iBook, etc.

Re:They screwed the pooch on the hi-fi (3, Insightful)

blackmonday (607916) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845517)

Thank god you're not in charge of making business decisions at Apple. People are already buying iPod HiFi systems - Bose, Altec Lansing, etc. Apple wants in on that. They know they can charge a premium for their system, and they're gonna do it. And you know what? People are going to buy it. In droves.

Most of your complaints can be traced back to the iPod itself. When it was first announced most people around here laughed it off as being nothing new and overpriced. Don't underestimate Apple's excellent product design and marketing expertise.

Re:They screwed the pooch on the hi-fi (1)

ZachPruckowski (918562) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845541)

Problem: there's nothing that says if I buy a mini, I have to buy an Apple keyboard, mouse, and monitor. The Xbox is different in that all products that want to work with it have to pay liscense fees, so even if I buy a 3rd party Xbox controller, MS still gets some of the money.

Re:They screwed the pooch on the hi-fi (1)

abscissa (136568) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845566)

I agree with most of what you have said, but unlike video games, Apple does not license anything that can make them a huge profit. This is why [[Video Came Console]] is sold at a loss... the company expects to make up big time in the rights for games.

To Apple's credit, other than MS Office, there hasn't been a single piece of software that I've **HAD** to buy for my Mac, -- at least give them credit for giving the consumer a practically all-in-one package.

Re:They screwed the pooch on the hi-fi (1)

Tweekster (949766) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845589)

YES I LOVE YOUR IDEA.... cause in my case i would have a shiny new netbsd box for the living room :)

Re:They screwed the pooch on the hi-fi (1)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845599)

But why would Apple care about marketshare? It's making plenty of profit without it!

Re:They screwed the pooch on the hi-fi (1)

Slappytron (954489) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845635)

Apple screwed the pooch on the iPod Hi-Fi. Sure, it looks all sleek and such, but it's priced WAY too high. $349 will get you a "home theater in a box" that will sound quite a bit better and give you a ton more flexibility, not to mention the ever-elusive AM/FM radio (not that people listen to it anyway). This thing is really no different from a $99 "boom box" type stereo with an AUX input, except that it charges your iPod, and costs $250 more.

It is priced too high. That said, compare the Altec im7 or Bose SoundDock to DLO's iBoom. You can hear the extra bucks in every note. Speakers are for playing music. You're judging it on auxiliary features.

It's my belief that if Apple TRULY wanted market share, they'd follow Microsoft's lead on the Xbox and sell it at a loss but then make it up in other ways.

Thank god they don't. This is a failing strategy for long term success. And that's something that makes Apple unique - I truly believe they care more about experience than market share.

You are missing the market (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845686)

Apple screwed the pooch on the iPod Hi-Fi. Sure, it looks all sleek and such, but it's priced WAY too high. $349 will get you a "home theater in a box" that will sound quite a bit better and give you a ton more flexibility, not to mention the ever-elusive AM/FM radio (not that people listen to it anyway).

Just as people who dissed the iPod mini not realizing that it was going after the flash player market, you miss the market Apple is going after with the iPod HiFi - the people that are buying other things just like it, such as the Altc Lansing [amazon.com] iPod stereo.

The thing is, most of these devices don't really sound that great. If you just want a simple stereo for a room and not a whole audio system in a box, the iPod stereo is a device that will probably sound pretty good and work well for a customer that wants a little higher level of playback quality.

That said, I probably would not buy one as I'd either buy an Airport Express for a room or use headphones everywhere else. But it doesn't mean it's not a good product that will sell well.

It's my belief that if Apple TRULY wanted market share, they'd follow Microsoft's lead on the Xbox and sell it at a loss but then make it up in other ways. If they sold the Mac Mini for $299 or even $349, they'd sell millions overnight, still make money on dot-Mac, iWork, keyboards, iTunes songs, iPods, etc. And they'd get a hugely larger share of the market.

Isn't it better to capture 80-90% percent of the market while ALSO making a ton of money instead of a loss?

I mean if market share ever started to become even a small concern of Apple they could possibly follow your instructions, but honestly with people beating a path to thier door to buy them at current prices they would have to be insane to take a loss to grab market share they already own.

You must have played a really bad game of Lemonaide STand when you were a kid. "Sure the lemos and sugar cost $0.10 a glass, but I'll sell them for $0.05 on this 90 degree summer day and make it up in volume!"

What the mini is missing (1)

truthsearch (249536) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845399)

If these products were overhyped I believe it's more the media than Apple's fault.

But as for the actual products the Mini needs one specific upgrade to be great option for living room multimedia: a faster hard disk [gadgetswanted.com] . At 5400 rpm they'll be slow at recording. But then PVR functionality doesn't seem to be in Apple's interest. They want us to download video through iTunes. But the Mini should have a faster HD to be ready to handle PVR functionality that others will program for or Apple will add later to stay competitive.

PowerPC Mac Mini For Cheap (1)

SlashdotOgre (739181) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845418)

I for one am happy with the new Mac Mini announcement, and they can overhype it as much as they want (in fact the more, the better). Personally I plan to pick up a (now significantly cheaper) PowerPC Mac Mini for media center purposes. The previous processor is more than powerful enough to be a MythTV frontend.

Ignoring the article completely... (3, Insightful)

YouHaveSnail (202852) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845433)

I usually pay pretty close attention to the products Apple introduces, and I have to say that I nearly missed the most recent introduction entirely. I may have been a bit inattentive, but when there's a really big announcement coming from Apple, everybody knows about it. For one thing, Apple generally introduces important products at major events, such as MacWorld or WWDC. This time, though, they just invited a bunch of reporters to show up and see their new products.

Overhyped? More like hardly hyped at all.

The 6 Button Remote - I vote for Tivo (1)

us7892 (655683) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845439)

Most of the article discusses the 6-button, super simple, fly in the face of 70's & 80's 75 button receiver, remote control design.

I like the idea of a simple remote, with a straightforward on-screen interface.

Then again, the Tivo remore has more than 6 buttons, and it's actually a very good design (except that the recall button is the lower right most button...but that's another story.) I guess it's more about the Tivo menu design, and you're essentially using the directional button on the Tivo most of the time anyway...

Isn't Tivo, with applications running remotely on your PC, pretty much what these "macMini living room things" are shootin for anyway...?

Re:The 6 Button Remote - I vote for Tivo (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845478)

"...(except that the recall button is the lower right most button...but that's another story.) I..."

since you are talking about remote design, it would seem to me that it is part of this story.

Ridiculous! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14845453)

How can these be overhyped? If anything, they are underhyped.

iPod Speaker Reviews (-1, Offtopic)

Mynister (738512) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845474)

I have just set up a new website to talk about all the different iPod Speaker Systems [ipodspeakerreviews.com] . I have not had chance to look at the Apple option up close. But with its price tag it had better sound pretty darn good.

Has anyone had a chance to hear it yet?

Check out iPod Speaker Reviews [ipodspeakerreviews.com] If you have any iPod speaker system it would be great if you could post a review. I am just getting the site started and all input is appreciated and welcome.

Re:iPod Speaker Reviews (4, Informative)

Golias (176380) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845726)

Yes, they are already in the Apple Stores.

As I said elsewhere, they sound a lot like the compact Bose offerings.

In other words: Fancy use of fake imaging, exaggerated bass boost with no real bottom end, and overall unsettlingly nothing like true high fidelity.

In other words, it's designed with the intention to dazzle the casual observer long enough to run their credit card through the register, not to faithfully reproduce music.

Remote Controls (5, Interesting)

soft_guy (534437) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845485)

I used to work for a consumer electronics manufacturer in product design. I learned several things about remote controls. The thing that I learned that is relevant to this conversation is that there is a "regional trend" on how remote controls are designed.

In the European market things like design and elegance and simplicity are percieved to be important. Therefore a "good" remote control for the european market has very few buttons.

In the US, a remote control with a button for every feature and not as much software menus/interactions is more normal.

In Japan/Asia/Pacific, a remote control is considered to be "macho" if it has lots and lots of buttons. The more buttons, the better. A "lady's" remote control will be a little bit smaller and have a few less buttons. According to the folks who I learned this from, the average family would have a remote for the man of the house and a smaller lady's remote.

In the US, there would just be one remote and no one would think of it as a "macho" thing to have more buttons.

With regards to the Front Row remote, Steve Jobs (as usual) takes his queus from european sophisticates on his notions of design, simplicity, etc.

Re:Remote Controls (1)

jpetts (208163) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845867)



Mehhh! THIS [msrcsites.co.uk] is the only remote control worth having...

What they said. (1)

singingjim (957822) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845488)

I got to this one late and was also surprised that the headline had nothing to do with the actual article, which was, to hype the crap out of a stupid remote control and give worthless opinions about other manufacturers remotes. I want my 5 minutes back.

Re:What they said. (1)

devjj (956776) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845819)

And I want my five seconds back for reading your comment. A remote control doesn't have intelligence of its own, so it cannot be "stupid." I think what you meant to say is "a stupidly designed remote control." You're entitled to that opinion, but it doesn't make the opinions expressed in the article worthless. The only worthless part of this little ditty is the headline/summary of the article.

Innovative? (1)

a10t2 (718106) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845545)

Apple didn't use the word 'innovative'. In fact the only adjective on the press invitations was 'fun'.

This is why Apple is moving to 'stealth' product updates instead of waiting for Macworld or WWDC. Maybe eventually they won't be the only company in the world whose stock drops when it releases new products.

Overhyped? (1)

Covetous Knight (957894) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845548)

Wow, the summary seems to conflict entirely with the second paragraph of the essay/article:

For the purpose of this essay, let's forget about whether Apple failed to live up to its own PR. In fact, let's ignore the PR strategy altogether and focus on one of the product announcements: the new Mac Minis. There are a couple interesting features that (while not necessarily spin worthy) may provide a glimpse into how Apple is planning to approach the digital living room.

Oh well. Anyway, the event was clearly entirely overhyped by the Apple blogs, rumorsites, etc. They took a small, private low-key invitation for fun-new products as an excuse to foam at the mouth and encourage their readers to do the same. "Send us in pictures of what you think the new iPod video will look like! Will Apple make a new snowblower? What do you think? What's going to happen? Oh geez we're so excited!"

Was I blown away with Apple's announcement on Tuesday? No. Was I given any reason to expect some mind blowing new products? Not from Apple. The Apple sites complaining about Tuesday's announcement have themselves to blame.

A Remote? for Something the size of a Remote?! WTF (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14845568)

I'm sorry but adding a remote to a ipod is rather stupid. If anything Apple should have done is build in wi-fi directly to the ipod and their speaker box that way you can play your ipod and use IT as the remote. I mean the ipod as a remote is perfect, its got the nice interface, the jog dial, everything that a remote should have so why place it way accross the room and have a frick'n remote with 6 buttons. If your going to set up your ipod to just "play" likley you'll be playing from a set play list or just put it on shuffle. Other than an instance where you might want to mute the "boom box" there is no need for a frick'n remote if they'd done it properly.

sheesh.

i'm sure i'm upsetting all the zellots/fanboys.

Re:A Remote? for Something the size of a Remote?! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14845654)

Er, the remote is for the Mini, d!psh!t.

I agree . . . (1)

Anonymous Poodle (15365) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845652)

The iPod Hi-fi is nothing new. Now if they had included a CD player, and perhaps a handle to carry it with, and made it in space age silver, Now that would be cool. I'm guessing that such a product would be extremely popular with urban dwellers/street artists.

Re:I agree . . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14845737)

CD player? Why not include an 8 track, turntable, and cassette player too??? I mean it might as well support all the obsolete media.

Re:I agree . . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14845765)

1982 called, they want their prejudice back...

hardly... (1)

theheff (894014) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845678)

Their success becomes their own enemey? Isn't that called motivation? That's just how marketing works... there's always a rush, and then things slow down. I don't see how this is news. Creativity keeps you alive in this market.

A True Lost Sale Mac Mini Story (1)

quakeaddict (94195) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845722)

I was eagerly waiting for the new Mac Mini.

I WANTED a Mac Mini.

My brother (unfortunately) purchased a G4 laptop 3 weeks before they released the Macbook pro, so I was in no hurry to by the Mini until they released it with the new chip.

I was expecting the same low price with a better processor.....like everything else tech.

Then I see the actual price....and it costs far more than the original and for what? A new chip? A puny hard drive? Not alot of memory? No DVD writer?

Apple......you can stick it.

Re:A True Lost Sale Mac Mini Story (1)

a10t2 (718106) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845853)

Um, it adds 802.11 and Bluetooth, a larger HD (80 vs 40 GB) and a faster processor (1.5 vs 1.25 GHz) for an extra $100. Otherwise the specs are the same. If you're disappointed by that, I don't see how it's Apple's problem. They're laughing all the way to the bank.

People overhype themselves (1)

danpsmith (922127) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845725)

When are people going to see that Apple is just another company. They might have come up with the Ipod, but like any other company, a lot of their product designs are going to be cannon fodder. Even Microsoft has had product lines that fell flat on their faces.

For those of you looking for Apple to solve the world's problems, remember, they are a company. They have an image, which is "look at me I'm the slick design innovator guy." They have a following based largely in pretty little things, and while pretty little things are nice to look at, they don't always make for the best products.

Of course you were expecting something earth shattering and you got the same old plus a hundred dollar case pitch. Apple is trying to do what all companies do, exploit their own product with mediocre accessories and pretend like they are the solution to global hunger. Anyone who throws their stereo away for the Ipod Hifi is a complete moron.

agreed with over-hype claim (1)

PureCreditor (300490) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845742)

there are already multiple stand-alone speaker systems for the ipod from Bose, JBL, and others, and the Intel Mac mini is simply a retool of the same offering on a faster chip.

these 2 products are more evolutionary than REVolutionary, and hardly deserves the fanfare of a separate launch party hosted by Jobs himself

maybe a true video ipod does, but these 2 products yielded a big YAWN in my mind when i saw the live blogs

What hype? (3, Insightful)

biglig2 (89374) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845743)

There wasn't any hype. "Come and see some fun new products" was all they said. How exactly could they have played it any less? "We've some new stuff, it's pretty crappy, but someone might want it I suppose."

And they could have hyped this. Look, they announced the switch to Intel last year and said they'd have Intel Macs in June this year. It's March, and already they have a mid-range desktop, high-end notebook, and two low-end desktop machines out.

What "overhype"? (1)

Expert Determination (950523) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845761)

Firstly, "overhype" is a strangely tautological word. Surely the word needed is "hype".

And secondly, what hype? I don't remember seeing ads everywhere advertising these new products. I surf tech web sites. I read news on Slashdot. I heard a rumour that Apple were going to make an announcement and was curious - but that's it. But I don't remember any hype coming from Apple.

Breaking News! (1)

Demerol (306753) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845796)

This just in!

Everything Apple does is over-hyped. Wake up and smell the same old bullshit with a small hard drive and cpu upgrade.

Nonentity (1)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845816)

Michael Greeson

Who?

"a dedicated TV output"? (3, Insightful)

HTH NE1 (675604) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845823)

"The new platform features a variety of entertainment-specific goodies, including... a dedicated TV output"

Where? I see a Firewire and a DVI port, no composite, S-Video, 75ohm coax, or component video you'd expect for the term "dedicated TV output". Indeed, from the specifications:
S-video and composite video output to connect directly to a TV or projector (using Apple DVI to Video Adapter, sold separately)
So Apple makes a scan converter, which could probably be used with any of their machines. It still doesn't make the DVI port a "dedicated TV output".

Straw that broke my back. (1)

Oz0ne (13272) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845859)

Slashdot has gotten just plain idiotic. Next story up: Sky is blue.

that's enough for me.

I think this was intentional (1)

melted (227442) | more than 8 years ago | (#14845874)

A disappointing, low-key announcement. Now watch the following happen:
1. Next announcement will be one heck of a blockbuster announcement. Like iPod Video, Mac Pro and totally redesigned Intel iBook in one shot.
2. They'll slash the price on the minis by a hundred bucks a couple of months down the road. Crowds of Mac fanatics will bust the doors down if it's just $100 less.
3. They'll re-price their boombox at $299.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...