My name is Cédric Bozzi. I make websites and apps, and this is my blog dedicated to technology: here you’ll find news, opinions and reviews, all written by a Mac-head who tends to have definite opinions about stuff.
I’m not surprised that the October, 14th date is confirmed — for Gruber to throw this around he had to be pretty sure it was true — but I can’t believe how transparent they are with this particular invitation: I mean, you don’t have to be clairvoyant to guess that they will probably unveil new laptops, right?
Regarding the current rumors:
Apple doesn’t need “revolutionary laser- and water-cutting technologies” to manufacture notebooks (they’ve managed to produce the MacBook Air alright already, haven’t they? and why the hell would a single manufacturing process need both lasers and water jets?); and even if they did, there’s no way building, equipping and staffing a brand-new, top-of-the-line revolutionary factory, instead of contracting to cheap Chinese third parties, would make MacBook prices go down.
On the other hand, knowing Steve, there are many reasons why he must be itching to have his own factories again rather than depend on third parties. But he’d want to keep an eye on the factory, so it would have to be in California, and it would double the costs of everything Apple produces. (Not that Steve would mind, but the board probably would, and his powers do have limits.)
I have no reason to believe that today’s leaked casing pictures are fake. MacBook Pros now have chiclet keyboards, obviously, and either the MacBook goes to aluminum (which was the common expectation, although it doesn’t make that much sense to me) or a small MacBook Pro is coming back. Note that the laptop shown on the invitation doesn’t particularly look like aluminum (although it has surprisingly sharp corners for a MacBook).
If anything, the photos tend to prove that the new MacBooks aren’t manufactured in an Apple factory, because even in China an Apple-operated factory wouldn’t let this kind of leak slip through.
The idea of a $800 MacBook makes a lot of sense (even though there’s no reason why Apple Stores would already know about them), now that everyone and their dog is installing OS X on $300 netbooks. And it would also make sense to have a $800 MacBook and a $1200 12- or 13-inch MacBook Pro.
One could dream that the invitation is so MacBook-centered precisely so that we don’t expect the “one more thing” to be a fantastic something-else. But then, there might not be any “one more thing” at all, and Apple doesn’t seem to care that much about suspense any more. I’d like the “Brick” to be the product of the Mac mini and Apple TV merging into a range of multi-purpose devices, but at any rate you shouldn’t expect much, or anything, on the iMac and Mac Pro fronts.
Come to think of it, the invitiation’s graphic would be a perfect depiction of a $400 10-inch MacBook. Plastic shell to cut costs, and sharp corners because you can’t waste any space with this format. But then, the Apple logo might be a little too small for that.