Apple fans will be happy to know that iPod is currently working on a device that is a little bigger than their popular iPod Touch but smaller than their equally popular MacBook. The midsize device – which is rumored to have a screen that is about seven or eight inches – is scheduled to be released sometime during the early part of 2010 and is being described as a tablet sized device, similar to a media pad that has managed to get the nickname ‘iTablet’. However, Apple and other companies have had past problems getting these ‘middle ground’ devices to fly in the consumer market, so they are going to have to do some serious work to make it appealing to fussy consumers.
There is a market for these smaller laptop, larger iPod type devices as the Netbook craze has already shown. According to Apple Interim CEO Tim Cook, the company is already pondering some interesting ideas for their ‘iTablet’. If Apple does pump out these units they will need to be reasonably priced, somewhere between $389 and $500 in order to stay competitive with similar devices already on the market.
What would an ‘iTablet’ be like? It would definitely have to offer the average consumer something that the other tablets are not. That has been part of the problem with the Netbooks and similar electronics. They have not offered anything new that another device can accomplish just as easily in a small format. An ‘iTablet’ would have to be thinner, lighter than and not as clunky as some of the current devices. The operating system and software loaded onto the tablet would have to be such that the ‘iTablet’ could easily be considered a productivity tool, possibly pulling the best applications from the current Mac OS and the iPhone and combining them into one unit.
Additionally, built in 3G wireless would be a must. Consumers want to be able to jump on, do what they have to, and jump back off quickly and without a fuss and this could be a major selling point for an ‘iTablet’. A multi touch screen, built-in App Store access and other features of the iPhone and iTouch that make consumers wild should be added to the device, and if Apple added a larger version of their virtual keyboard to where consumers could type with two hands the ‘iTablet’ could be a definite seller. Add to the device a built in camera and mike as well as an e-book reader, and Apple will have something to attract a consumer’s attention away from the mediocre tablets right over to theirs.