September is going to be little less interesting for techies. Apple is slipping out the word unofficially to reporters that next month's iPod event will not include an unveiling of the anticipated Apple Tablet.
Instead, more likely, it will be introduced in early 2010. The tablet is likely to be sort of a cross between a netbook and an iPod touch. In other words, imagine an iPod touch with a ten inch screen and more capabilities to function as a thin client Mac and an e-Reader.
Sound too good to be true? Well, for now it is.
What does a game delay mean? Here are my best guesses:
(At least I'm honest! That's all they are.)
1. Perhaps the delay is because it's not ready for market. However, getting it ready for a highly controlled demonstration for a keynote address does not exactly come with that pressure.
2. More likely, I'm guessing it's the economy. The tablet is reportedly going to cost around $800. Who has that kind of corn right now?
3. Cannibalizing the iPod market? If you introduce an $800 tablet (again, think 10 inch iPod Touch); it's likely to be too expensive to be the must-have present under the Christmas tree for most folks. So, would it only prove to just bleed off the latest, greatest iPods that will be the must-have present under the Christmas tree.
4. It's all about the e-Reader! If you believe the other school of thought, the tablet is supposed to go toe-to-toe with the Kindle e-Reader. Make no mistake, the big money in the e-Reader market is not downloading the latest Dan Brown religo-conspiracy novel (due out this Fall, by the way); it's about textbooks. Textbooks are outrageously expensive and have the same shelf life as raw fish. Subsequently, students have been learning from out-dated textbooks since they were written on papyrus. Whoever owns the e-Reader market will solve that problem at long last by making textbook revisions as easy as a distributing a software patch. This has the potential to be a Gutenberg-level moment for textbook (not to mention technical manuals) publishing. That being said, the publishing industry is not ready for it and until they are; the e-Reader will putter along. Perhaps Apple is taking some extra time to cut some key partnership deals.
Then again, maybe the darn thing just isn't ready to show off yet.