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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Notebooks > New Macbook AIR- what do you want to see in it next?

New Macbook AIR- what do you want to see in it next? (Page 3)
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vmarks
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Apr 28, 2010, 10:12 AM
 
I wanted a MBA. I wanted it with 4GB of ram. I wanted it with a slightly faster processor, although I wasn't going to make that a huge point.

Then I saw what I could do with an iPad and a 15" MBP. I can still see where traveling with an MBA would be easier than an iPad, but I think for my uses that an iPad with BT keyboard would do the trick.

For travel, I need some basic capabilities and low weight. seriously low weight. for home, I need a machine with more performance, but still a laptop.
If this post is in the Lounge forum, it is likely to be my own opinion, and not representative of the position of MacNN.com.

     
Helmling
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Apr 28, 2010, 04:18 PM
 
Originally Posted by vmarks View Post
I wanted a MBA. I wanted it with 4GB of ram. I wanted it with a slightly faster processor, although I wasn't going to make that a huge point.

Then I saw what I could do with an iPad and a 15" MBP. I can still see where traveling with an MBA would be easier than an iPad, but I think for my uses that an iPad with BT keyboard would do the trick.

For travel, I need some basic capabilities and low weight. seriously low weight. for home, I need a machine with more performance, but still a laptop.
See, yeah, but I don't want to split my stuff. If I had all my stuff in my iDisk, then I could see that working for me, but iDisk is so slow that I only use it as a back-up. I want everything on one machine and I want it light. I don't even care that much about the processor and 4Gb, although faster/more is always better and the power for the money right now is pretty crappy.

But what can I say, the heart wants what the heart wants...
     
driven
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Apr 28, 2010, 04:40 PM
 
Originally Posted by Helmling View Post
See, yeah, but I don't want to split my stuff. If I had all my stuff in my iDisk, then I could see that working for me, but iDisk is so slow that I only use it as a back-up. I want everything on one machine and I want it light. I don't even care that much about the processor and 4Gb, although faster/more is always better and the power for the money right now is pretty crappy.

But what can I say, the heart wants what the heart wants...
iDisk is slow. I use Dropbox for most things now.

(Still can't find a reasonable replacement for the MobileMe address book though. Syncs everything.)
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Helmling
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Apr 28, 2010, 10:06 PM
 
Originally Posted by driven View Post
iDisk is slow. I use Dropbox for most things now.

(Still can't find a reasonable replacement for the MobileMe address book though. Syncs everything.)
I know! The sync between my phone and iCal is worth the MobileMe pricetag.

So you like DropBox? I'm weirded out by their website. There's no information beyond the video and they don't mention price anywhere.
     
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Apr 28, 2010, 10:08 PM
 
Originally Posted by driven View Post
iDisk is slow. I use Dropbox for most things now.

(Still can't find a reasonable replacement for the MobileMe address book though. Syncs everything.)
Yeah, I'm intrigued now. But what's the catch on the free 2Gb? Ads?

Is it really much faster than iDisk? I mean, I'm already paying for that, so it'd have to be a lot faster to make it worthwhile, I'd think.

Does it pester you a lot about file versions? Or does it update fast enough that things don't get out of sync?

Update: I tried to run the application, but it's giving me an error at startup and there's nothing in their FAQ about it. Hmmph.
( Last edited by Helmling; Apr 28, 2010 at 10:25 PM. )
     
turtle777
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Apr 28, 2010, 11:00 PM
 
Originally Posted by Helmling View Post
Yeah, I'm intrigued now. But what's the catch on the free 2Gb? Ads?

Is it really much faster than iDisk? I mean, I'm already paying for that, so it'd have to be a lot faster to make it worthwhile, I'd think.

Does it pester you a lot about file versions? Or does it update fast enough that things don't get out of sync?
No Ads. No catch.

No pestering about file versions, it's pretty efficient at what it's doing in the background.
The synchronization is normally invisible to the user.

-t
     
Helmling
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Apr 28, 2010, 11:07 PM
 
Originally Posted by turtle777 View Post
No Ads. No catch.

No pestering about file versions, it's pretty efficient at what it's doing in the background.
The synchronization is normally invisible to the user.

-t
I don't know. It wouldn't run after install and then their website went down while I was reading through the help files. Kinda sketchy.
     
turtle777
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Apr 28, 2010, 11:10 PM
 
Originally Posted by Helmling View Post
I don't know. It wouldn't run after install and then their website went down while I was reading through the help files. Kinda sketchy.
Just try to reinstall.

I really haven't had an issue with it, and I run it on 3 Mac, one PC and in 2 Virtual Machines.

-t
     
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Apr 29, 2010, 12:29 AM
 
Originally Posted by turtle777 View Post
Just try to reinstall.

I really haven't had an issue with it, and I run it on 3 Mac, one PC and in 2 Virtual Machines.

-t
Cool...so it pretty effortlessly keeps your files synced? Do you save as to a virtual drive or what?

I sent in a tech support request because it just won't work. Maybe when I get an Air it'll work just fine.

; )
     
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Apr 29, 2010, 12:49 AM
 
Originally Posted by Helmling View Post
Cool...so it pretty effortlessly keeps your files synced? Do you save as to a virtual drive or what?
It creates a "Dropbox" folder in your home folder that looks and acts just like any other folder.

However, it's monitored in the background and synchronized across all computers that access that Dropbox account.

Very intuitive, very smart, very efficient.

E.g., I keep my 1Password keys on there, so they are automagically synchronized across all my Macs. Plus, I can always access the Web version of 1Password from any PC that synchronizes to my Dropbox. Very cool.

-t
     
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Apr 29, 2010, 02:54 AM
 
Originally Posted by turtle777 View Post
Just try to reinstall.

I really haven't had an issue with it, and I run it on 3 Mac, one PC and in 2 Virtual Machines.

-t
I'll second that.

I use Dropbox on several Macs and on my iPhone. Works like a charm. There's really no catch. The free 2GB are free. No ads, no spam, no nonsense. I think it's a very nice tool. And in an almost Apple-like fashion it's totally seamless and simple. Very natural.

It's also nice as an additional redundant backup for important files. Since your files are in the cloud you don't have to worry about losing stuff when your entire house burns down or all your luggage gets diverted to Tuvalu (where it then mysteriously disappears) instead of Kennedy Airport. I you're worried about security because you're uploading your stuff to their servers you can always put sensitive stuff in an encrypted image first.

The only downside I can see is that if your uplink at home isn't very good (cheap DSL or cable for example) latency for syncing will be increased. With fast connections stuff basically always syncs instantly. But if you have a crappy uplink (as I once dealt with while staying at a hotel), you'll notice there's a lag when syncing.

Compared to iDisk this totally rocks IMHO. And the first 2GB are free too.
     
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Apr 29, 2010, 08:31 AM
 
Originally Posted by Helmling View Post
Yeah, I'm intrigued now. But what's the catch on the free 2Gb? Ads?

Is it really much faster than iDisk? I mean, I'm already paying for that, so it'd have to be a lot faster to make it worthwhile, I'd think.

Does it pester you a lot about file versions? Or does it update fast enough that things don't get out of sync?

Update: I tried to run the application, but it's giving me an error at startup and there's nothing in their FAQ about it. Hmmph.
No ads and wicked fast.
Their gig is if they provide a good enough service that perhaps you'll consider becoming a paid user (50+ GB) at some point. I've been able to make the 2GB work for me.

Dropbox is one of my "essential" apps. Evernote is another one.
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driven
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Apr 29, 2010, 08:33 AM
 
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
I'll second that.

I use Dropbox on several Macs and on my iPhone. Works like a charm. There's really no catch. The free 2GB are free. No ads, no spam, no nonsense. I think it's a very nice tool. And in an almost Apple-like fashion it's totally seamless and simple. Very natural.

It's also nice as an additional redundant backup for important files. Since your files are in the cloud you don't have to worry about losing stuff when your entire house burns down or all your luggage gets diverted to Tuvalu (where it then mysteriously disappears) instead of Kennedy Airport. I you're worried about security because you're uploading your stuff to their servers you can always put sensitive stuff in an encrypted image first.

The only downside I can see is that if your uplink at home isn't very good (cheap DSL or cable for example) latency for syncing will be increased. With fast connections stuff basically always syncs instantly. But if you have a crappy uplink (as I once dealt with while staying at a hotel), you'll notice there's a lag when syncing.

Compared to iDisk this totally rocks IMHO. And the first 2GB are free too.
Just another note on security ... all transmissions are SSL based, so in theory nobody should be able to grab your stuff during transmission. That puts it a step ahead of iDisk. (I think)
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Apr 29, 2010, 09:23 AM
 
Gee, I'm sold...if only it worked.

: (
     
analogue SPRINKLES
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Apr 29, 2010, 04:33 PM
 
Transmit now lets you transfer files within the finder and works with iDisk much faster.
Panic - Transmit - The ultimate Mac OS X FTP + SFTP + S3 app
     
danbrew
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Apr 29, 2010, 04:56 PM
 
Get ride of the keyboard, put a bigger hard drive in it, make it a tad bit smaller. or make the ipad 25% larger with the ability to run OS X.
     
analogue SPRINKLES
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Apr 29, 2010, 05:05 PM
 
Originally Posted by danbrew View Post
Get ride of the keyboard, put a bigger hard drive in it, make it a tad bit smaller. or make the ipad 25% larger with the ability to run OS X.
iPhone/iPad already runs OSX.

You mean the desktop OSX? Damn, with no keyboard and touch UI that isn't going to work so well.
     
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Apr 29, 2010, 05:51 PM
 
Originally Posted by analogue SPRINKLES View Post
iPhone/iPad already runs OSX.

You mean the desktop OSX? Damn, with no keyboard and touch UI that isn't going to work so well.
No doubt.

But I think he means a more robust version of OSX that's touch screen sensitive. Which is, I imagine, where Apple's headed. They were the first to ditch the disk drive and will clearly be the first to ditch the DVD drive...I expect that within five years, they'll ditch the mouse.
     
danbrew
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Apr 29, 2010, 05:57 PM
 
I just want a slightly larger iPad device that is capable of running OS X applications. Apple can call the OS for our Macbooks and the iPad "OS X" - but it's not the same thing for both else we would be able to run Lightroom, Photoshop, etc. on the iPad.

I actually kind of like the keyboard on the iPad and can type pretty fast with it.

I hear 'ya on the mouse, but I suppose you could lug along a tiny little bluetooth mouse.
     
Helmling
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Apr 29, 2010, 06:30 PM
 
Originally Posted by danbrew View Post
I just want a slightly larger iPad device that is capable of running OS X applications. Apple can call the OS for our Macbooks and the iPad "OS X" - but it's not the same thing for both else we would be able to run Lightroom, Photoshop, etc. on the iPad.

I actually kind of like the keyboard on the iPad and can type pretty fast with it.

I hear 'ya on the mouse, but I suppose you could lug along a tiny little bluetooth mouse.
Actually, I meant no mouse is a good thing. I mean, really, it's not an intuitive way to interface. Touch screen is a much better way to interact with a device and Apple has really developed a refined interface system with the iPhone and iPad. I got a real sense of this when playing this game my kids introduced me to: Plants vs. Zombies. It's kind of annoying with the mouse on the computer to work the game, but I got the iPhone version and it's much more fluid. It really brought home to me how unnatural the entire notion of a mouse is. Touchscreen GUI's just make more sense and I bet Apple will move Macs in that direction in the near future. Hell, maybe that's why there's no 10.7 on the immediate horizon. Maybe it's a touchscreen-friendly version of the OS.
     
turtle777
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Apr 29, 2010, 07:29 PM
 
Originally Posted by danbrew View Post
I just want a slightly larger iPad device that is capable of running OS X applications. Apple can call the OS for our Macbooks and the iPad "OS X" - but it's not the same thing for both else we would be able to run Lightroom, Photoshop, etc. on the iPad.

I actually kind of like the keyboard on the iPad and can type pretty fast with it.

I hear 'ya on the mouse, but I suppose you could lug along a tiny little bluetooth mouse.
Forget about it. That's what Macbook(Pros) are for.

The touch UI will never do everything as well as a full blown OS X Mac.

-t
     
Helmling
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Apr 29, 2010, 07:43 PM
 
Originally Posted by turtle777 View Post
Forget about it. That's what Macbook(Pros) are for.

The touch UI will never do everything as well as a full blown OS X Mac.

-t
Why not?

I think people are so used to a mouse-based interface that they have trouble imagining life without it. But really, there's not much reason we need it.
     
turtle777
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Apr 29, 2010, 11:05 PM
 
Originally Posted by Helmling View Post
Why not?

I think people are so used to a mouse-based interface that they have trouble imagining life without it. But really, there's not much reason we need it.
I should expand: with a mouse comes a keyboard, and certain tasks are always going to be more effective using that combination.

Just like a CLI can be more effective than a GUI for some tasks.

E.g., a mouse allows for more precise movement and positioning than a finger on a touch UI.

-t
     
analogue SPRINKLES
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Apr 29, 2010, 11:17 PM
 
Originally Posted by Helmling View Post
No doubt.

But I think he means a more robust version of OSX that's touch screen sensitive. Which is, I imagine, where Apple's headed. They were the first to ditch the disk drive and will clearly be the first to ditch the DVD drive...I expect that within five years, they'll ditch the mouse.
5 years? I say 3 MAX. The magic mouse is the gateway.

I'm pretty sure even our macbooks are going to evolve into powerful iPads which i fine by me.
     
Simon
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Apr 30, 2010, 03:26 AM
 
If the MB were to turn into a glorified iPad Apple would lose a lot of notebook customers. And since notebooks are their bread and butter they know not to do that.

The iPad will likely remain a consumer device for consumption of media. The Mac will stick around as a tool to get work done and to actually produce said media.
( Last edited by Simon; Apr 30, 2010 at 03:33 AM. )
     
Eug
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Apr 30, 2010, 09:21 AM
 
It'd be interesting to see a 2ndary function of the iPad would be to become a touch screen interface for an iMac, that could function along side a mouse. I don't know if that'd really work ergnomically, but it'd be interesting to try.

Either that, or else give us better multi-touch gesturing on the Magic mouse.
     
Helmling
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Apr 30, 2010, 09:29 AM
 
Originally Posted by turtle777 View Post
I should expand: with a mouse comes a keyboard, and certain tasks are always going to be more effective using that combination.

Just like a CLI can be more effective than a GUI for some tasks.

E.g., a mouse allows for more precise movement and positioning than a finger on a touch UI.

-t
I suppose that's true, but I can definitely see the mouse becoming a specialized tool for graphic artists, while the rest of us just touch the screen.
     
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Apr 30, 2010, 09:31 AM
 
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
If the MB were to turn into a glorified iPad Apple would lose a lot of notebook customers. And since notebooks are their bread and butter they know not to do that.

The iPad will likely remain a consumer device for consumption of media. The Mac will stick around as a tool to get work done and to actually produce said media.
I'm not talking about a glorified iPad, I'm saying that iMacs and Macbooks could all go touchscreen with the full OSX. In fact, there's no reason that a touchscreen version of the OS couldn't continue to be 100% functional with mouse/trackpad input also.
     
Eug
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Apr 30, 2010, 10:06 AM
 
Originally Posted by Helmling View Post
I suppose that's true, but I can definitely see the mouse becoming a specialized tool for graphic artists, while the rest of us just touch the screen.
I prefer the touchpad on a laptop to touch screen. There's nothing stopping Apple from creating an LCD touchpad though.

I would also hate to use a desktop with a touch screen. Serious ergonomic issues there. Can you imagine having to have your arm straight out touching the screen all the time, instead of just resting it on a desk? You'd be tired in 10 minutes. And no, I don't want my main screen on/in the desk.

The iPad is cool, but it also has some serious ergnomic issues for use as a main productivity machine, and I'm not even talking about the software-compatibility issue.
     
Helmling
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Apr 30, 2010, 10:41 AM
 
Originally Posted by Eug View Post
I prefer the touchpad on a laptop to touch screen. There's nothing stopping Apple from creating an LCD touchpad though.

I would also hate to use a desktop with a touch screen. Serious ergonomic issues there. Can you imagine having to have your arm straight out touching the screen all the time, instead of just resting it on a desk? You'd be tired in 10 minutes. And no, I don't want my main screen on/in the desk.

The iPad is cool, but it also has some serious ergnomic issues for use as a main productivity machine, and I'm not even talking about the software-compatibility issue.
I'm not sure that would be inconvenient, actually. I'm siting here at my desk, reclined in my chair, imagining that every time I have to reach for the mouse, I'd have to reach for the screen instead...I've got to tell you, I think we've become so acclimated to using the mouse, it's hard to get our heads around anything else. But reaching out and actually touching what I want to move on the screen would seem so much more natural. As for fatigue issues...hmm, I don't know. Do we use the mouse that much?

Well, maybe you're right. We'll see, I guess. There are certainly some systems where a touch-dominant interface wouldn't work. I have a mini plugged into my TV...can't get up and touch that every time I need to do something.
     
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Apr 30, 2010, 10:46 AM
 
Originally Posted by Helmling View Post
But reaching out and actually touching what I want to move on the screen would seem so much more natural. As for fatigue issues...hmm, I don't know. Do we use the mouse that much?
I work in Finance.

Let me tell you: the day I have to manipulate Excel sheets by touching the screen for data input is the day I quit.

For many tasks, and touchscreen (w/o mouse and keyboard) is not an option.

-t
     
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Apr 30, 2010, 04:54 PM
 
This is so funny.

Me, after like two weeks of jumping up and down here and shouting, "I want me a Macbook Air!" have now rethought it.

No, not an iPad.

I looked over the specs for the 13" and saw that it's a measely 4.5 pounds. I'd only really looked at the 15" Pro before and thought, "too big for me." But the 13" comes in half a pound lighter than my current Macbook. For less money, I could get so much more power and you know what, 4.5 isn't that heavy.

I feel silly now.
     
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May 10, 2010, 05:06 AM
 
New MBA rumors.

Similar to what some people here have said, HardMac speculates there might be no MBA update in the near future at all.

OTOH this just in from Macworld.au: the same source that leaked details a week beforehand about the recent MBP update has now informed them about the upcoming MBA update. Apparently product code MC516LL/A K87 BETTER BTR-USA refers to the new MBA with several thousand units already on their way to Oz. Product update tomorrow?
     
Helmling
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May 10, 2010, 03:58 PM
 
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
New MBA rumors.

Similar to what some people here have said, HardMac speculates there might be no MBA update in the near future at all.

OTOH this just in from Macworld.au: the same source that leaked details a week beforehand about the recent MBP update has now informed them about the upcoming MBA update. Apparently product code MC516LL/A K87 BETTER BTR-USA refers to the new MBA with several thousand units already on their way to Oz. Product update tomorrow?
Oh, THAT's just great. I literally just ordered my Pro last night.
     
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May 10, 2010, 05:09 PM
 
Well, your MBP will probably still be more powerful than whatever updated MBA comes out, if it turns out to be true. (I read that the source hedged a bit, said it the part number might be for a new Cinema Display (although the “BETTER” part would suggest a Mac).)
     
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May 10, 2010, 05:16 PM
 
     
Simon
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May 11, 2010, 04:30 AM
 
Ars raises good point about the Core UM series at 18W. Indeed the UM series is what we'd expect Apple to use. They come at very low clock speed right now though which is something I've also already complained about in another MBA thread.

i7-640UM: 1.20 GHz (2.26 GHz with TurboBoost), 4 MB cache, 18W, $305
i7-620UM: 1.06 GHz (2.13 GHz with TurboBoost), 4 MB cache, 18W, $278
i5-520UM, 1.06 GHz (1.86 GHz with TurboBoost), 3 MB cache, 18W, $241

There's also a LM series with clock as high as 2.13 GHz (2.93 GHz with TB), but that's at 25W TDP. Factor in extra package size and IGP and it doesn;t look like a likely successor of the MBA's SL series Penryn.

Info about the next UM series chips has already been leaked though.

i7-680UM: 1.46 GHz (2.53 GHz with TurboBoost), 4 MB cache, 18W, rumored for fall 2010
i7-660UM: 1.33 GHz (2.40 GHz with TurboBoost), 4 MB cache, 18W, rumored for summer 2010

There's some hope Apple would get early low-vol batches form Intel. But judging by Intel's schedule alone we should't see a new MBA for quite a while. OTOH Arrandale is not a given, and Intel's volume is unknown too so we'll just have to wait and see.
     
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May 12, 2010, 06:45 AM
 
I think they should kill the Air and just incorporate the light weight spirit of it into all macbook pros. The Air was just too much compromise for so little advantage.
     
Simon
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May 12, 2010, 08:02 AM
 
Originally Posted by Ado View Post
I think they should kill the Air and just incorporate the light weight spirit of it into all macbook pros. The Air was just too much compromise for so little advantage.
Apart from removing the internal optical, what else could be done in your opinion to make the MBP more MBA-like?
     
Koralatov
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May 14, 2010, 11:30 AM
 
Originally Posted by Ado View Post
I think they should kill the Air and just incorporate the light weight spirit of it into all macbook pros. The Air was just too much compromise for so little advantage.
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
Apart from removing the internal optical, what else could be done in your opinion to make the MBP more MBA-like?
Simon, I think you misunderstood his post. Ado didn’t mention any hardware changes, only that Apple should “incorporate the light weight spirit” (emphasis mine) of the Air into the MacBook Pros. That, obviously, can mean only only one thing.
     
Simon
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May 15, 2010, 02:29 AM
 
Hehe.

I saw bringing unibody to the MBP as Apple's effort to "incorporate the light weight spirit of it into all macbook pros". I agree they can go further though. I'd just like to hear other people's suggestions beyond the obvious removal of the optical (which I agree is overdue).

It's funny how with things like the original USB-only iMac or no-Flash iDevices Steve was so quick to tell people that's all they'll ever need, that there's a good alternative to their legacy stuff, and how the new stuff will be so much nice, yadda yadda. But where's Steve telling people how CDs (and most importantly burning in sessions) is a bag of hurt and that USB memory is way nicer? Where's that kind of talk when we need it from you, Steve?
     
Eug
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May 16, 2010, 08:12 AM
 
DVD is not a "bag of hurt". It just may be superfluous for some people.

OTOH, Blu-ray is arguably a "bag of hurt". Well, it's a bag of irritating rules anyway. Ironically, Jobs pushed for some of those rules, when he was wearing his Pixar CEO hat.
     
Koralatov
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May 16, 2010, 10:34 AM
 
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
I saw bringing unibody to the MBP as Apple's effort to "incorporate the light weight spirit of it into all macbook pros". I agree they can go further though. I'd just like to hear other people's suggestions beyond the obvious removal of the optical (which I agree is overdue).
I think there was definitely an element of that in the Unibody designs, but I still think ditching the optical would put a lot of people off, even though most of them probably rarely use it; it’s something of a psychological safety blanket for a lot of people. (It would also bring up an interesting problem when it comes to new OS X releases. Would they be released on USB flash drives instead? I personally would prefer that.)

I think the best idea would be to gradually transition toward the optical-less MBPs by first offering it as a BTO option with either more battery or another HD in the optical bay. Offering both these options wouldn’t be Apple’s style, so — if they did decide to offer either — they’d probably plump for the second HD. That’s the kind of feature that powerusers (puke) would love. Personally, though, I would come close to killing someone for a 15″ MBP with the new hi-res screen and 11–12 hour battery-life. (I’m assuming ditching the optical would allow for another 3–4 hours of battery to be stuffed in there.)

Alternatively, a BTO 13″ MBP with a 1440×900 screen, no SD, and insane battery-life would pretty much hit the sweet-spot for me in terms of size/weight/performance…
     
slugslugslug
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May 16, 2010, 11:21 AM
 
Originally Posted by Koralatov View Post
… (It would also bring up an interesting problem when it comes to new OS X releases. Would they be released on USB flash drives instead? I personally would prefer that.)
This seems like a good idea, but it’s been brought up before that manufacturing costs for USB sticks are probably going to remain significantly higher than similar-capacity optical media.

Personally, though, I would come close to killing someone for a 15″ MBP with the new hi-res screen and 11–12 hour battery-life. (I’m assuming ditching the optical would allow for another 3–4 hours of battery to be stuffed in there.)
Is that a good assumption? How much power does an optical drive suck up, especially if you never use it? I’m not knowledgeable about the specifics, but I doubt it’s 25% of total system power, which is the minimum implied by your numbers.
     
macaddict0001
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May 16, 2010, 02:21 PM
 
Originally Posted by Koralatov View Post
I think there was definitely an element of that in the Unibody designs, but I still think ditching the optical would put a lot of people off, even though most of them probably rarely use it; it’s something of a psychological safety blanket for a lot of people. (It would also bring up an interesting problem when it comes to new OS X releases. Would they be released on USB flash drives instead? I personally would prefer that.)

I think the best idea would be to gradually transition toward the optical-less MBPs by first offering it as a BTO option with either more battery or another HD in the optical bay. Offering both these options wouldn’t be Apple’s style, so — if they did decide to offer either — they’d probably plump for the second HD. That’s the kind of feature that powerusers (puke) would love. Personally, though, I would come close to killing someone for a 15″ MBP with the new hi-res screen and 11–12 hour battery-life. (I’m assuming ditching the optical would allow for another 3–4 hours of battery to be stuffed in there.)

Alternatively, a BTO 13″ MBP with a 1440×900 screen, no SD, and insane battery-life would pretty much hit the sweet-spot for me in terms of size/weight/performance…
They did something very similar with the powerbook g3 line.

Originally Posted by slugslugslug View Post
This seems like a good idea, but it’s been brought up before that manufacturing costs for USB sticks are probably going to remain significantly higher than similar-capacity optical media.


Is that a good assumption? How much power does an optical drive suck up, especially if you never use it? I’m not knowledgeable about the specifics, but I doubt it’s 25% of total system power, which is the minimum implied by your numbers.
Just because usb flash drives aren't going to come down to 20 cents or whatever a dvd costs doesn't mean they aren't inexpensive.
I think Koralatov meant that an auxiliary battery could be installed in the optical drive bay.
     
turtle777
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May 16, 2010, 02:30 PM
 
Originally Posted by slugslugslug View Post
Is that a good assumption? How much power does an optical drive suck up, especially if you never use it? I’m not knowledgeable about the specifics, but I doubt it’s 25% of total system power, which is the minimum implied by your numbers.
No, he means to fill the space of the removed HD with extra battery capacity.

So in the end, the same size MBP, just with more battery.

-t
     
slugslugslug
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May 16, 2010, 06:41 PM
 
Oy. Poor reading comprehension today, sorry.
     
Simon
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May 17, 2010, 05:18 AM
 
Originally Posted by Eug View Post
DVD is not a "bag of hurt". It just may be superfluous for some people.
In my book having to burn stuff in sessions, then verify the burn, and finally erase the DVD before I can burn to it again, etc. compared to just a simple drag 'n drop constitutes Bag of Hurt™ at its finest.

I agree BR is even worse with all its added restrictions and nasty DRM schemes, but IMHO that's like saying dog shit is worse than cat shit. In the end, it's all still shit. Of course, YMMV.
     
Simon
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May 17, 2010, 05:26 AM
 
Originally Posted by Koralatov View Post
I think there was definitely an element of that in the Unibody designs, but I still think ditching the optical would put a lot of people off, even though most of them probably rarely use it; it’s something of a psychological safety blanket for a lot of people. (It would also bring up an interesting problem when it comes to new OS X releases. Would they be released on USB flash drives instead? I personally would prefer that.)
Point taken. However, to me it sounds like Apple is exactly the right company to against the 'psychological safety blanket'. The same way they ditched SCSI/serial/ADB for USB or Flash for HTML5. Maybe it's time to push people over that line.

A BTO option would be fine for me. I doubt however Apple would go that route. Choice is not exactly Steve's favorite issue.

I agree USB sticks will be more expensive than DVDs to distribute OS X. That's a choice Apple can make however. Just as they chose more expensive components over cheaper alternatives elsewhere.
     
Simon
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May 17, 2010, 05:27 AM
 
Originally Posted by Koralatov View Post
Alternatively, a BTO 13″ MBP with a 1440×900 screen, no SD, and insane battery-life would pretty much hit the sweet-spot for me in terms of size/weight/performance…
I'd love that. Even more so if they'd also fit a 330M in there.
     
 
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