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Apple to reveal 'latest creation' Jan. 27

Monday morning, Apple e-mailed invitations to journalists--yours truly included--for a "Special Event" on the morning of Jan. 27.

apple_creation_event_invite.jpg

The message features the vague come-on "Come see our latest creation" and an illustration of stylized paint splatters but provides little other information beyond the time and location (10 a.m. PST, the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Theater in San Francisco). And yet there's little doubt in the tech business about this event's headline attraction: After months of rumors--dating back to at least May of 2008--it can only be the long-awaited, maybe-it-won't-be-mythical-any-longer Apple tablet computer.

Next week's event might also feature news about the iPhone (maybe the arrival of true multitasking?) and Apple's iLife media software. Then again, there's the faint possibility of a remake of the 2006 snoozer in which Apple introduced the iPod Hi-Fi stereo and updated the Mac mini desktop. But considering all the evidence available--including Apple forgoing its usual product-launch opportunity at Macworld Expo--next week's occasion looks like a significant happening.

And so, like other tech journalists, I've booked my travel arrangements: Next Wednesday, you'll be able to read my live-blog of Apple's show here, starting around 1 p.m. Eastern.

Until then, with so little concrete information available, the only responsible journalistic reaction is to Let The Speculation Begin! You can play that game too: Will the main attraction turn out to be the Mythical Apple Tablet? Will we see news about the iPhone too? And what sort of "one more thing..." will wrap up the event?

By Rob Pegoraro  |  January 19, 2010; 11:00 AM ET
Categories:  Gadgets , The business we have chosen  
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Comments

I still think that something relating to AppleTV is going to be announced.

Posted by: wiredog | January 19, 2010 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Apple TV is not a new creation. But, new content for it may be part of the announcement. The rest? The tablet.

Posted by: query0 | January 19, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Looks like multicolored vomit to me.

Posted by: merkytimes | January 19, 2010 2:05 PM | Report abuse

I'm guessing it is a combination device that allows you to listen to a reading of a books on tape while simultaneously reading it on the screen. Also it will function as a Tivo device for radio, television and recorded sound/film. Oh yeah, it also makes movies.

Posted by: g-lo | January 19, 2010 3:46 PM | Report abuse

in the season of automotive shows, how about we finally get a peek at the icar?

Posted by: joeboo1 | January 19, 2010 4:07 PM | Report abuse

it's Apple's first snowblower, you're all fooled. white plastic and white tires. you'll love it if you can find it next to your garage!

Posted by: swschrad | January 19, 2010 4:34 PM | Report abuse

not just the icar, but john scully's famous flying car. steve jobs has personally perfected anti-gravity. you heard it here first.

seriously though, why a company like apple doesn't get into the electric car business escapes me. one of those babies would be more electronics and portable batteries than vehicle, so it's not like the company would be stretching too much. though i'm not so sure people would be eager to drive super-flat cars that only weight 14 ounces....

Posted by: rm0659 | January 19, 2010 4:38 PM | Report abuse

The real key isn't a tablet that just consumes content like showing videos or e-books. The real killer feature is a tablet that can also create content as well. Remember, Apple acquired FingerWorks, which used to sell unique touchpads with virtual keyboards on them that let you type and move your finger to move the mouse pointer. For more information about my prediction of the Apple tablet, check out www.topbananas.com and my essay "The End of an Era" where I predict the features of the Apple tablet.

Posted by: bothecat | January 19, 2010 4:38 PM | Report abuse

not just the icar, but john scully's famous flying car. steve jobs has personally perfected anti-gravity. you heard it here first.

seriously though, why a company like apple doesn't get into the electric car business escapes me. one of those babies would be more electronics and portable batteries than vehicle, so it's not like the company would be stretching too much. though i'm not so sure people would be eager to drive super-flat cars that only weight 14 ounces....

Posted by: rm0659 | January 19, 2010 4:39 PM | Report abuse

We are running this story tomorrow...thought we would give Washington Post readers a FirstLook:
http://www.rainydaymagazine.com/RDM2010/Home/January/Week3/RDMHomeJan2010.htm#Apple_iPatchFirstLook

The NEW device is actually called the iPatch...all this tablet talk is just a red herring.

Sincerely,
RainyDayInterns

Posted by: RainyDayIntern | January 19, 2010 8:06 PM | Report abuse

This just in, although the sources are anonymous, as they work at Apple:
It is a remarkably sharp kitchen knife which doesn't crush tomatoes, with an iPod, LCD clock and timer in the handle. Word is, with the educational discount they will throw in a digital garlic press.
Another source, however, indicated it might be the softest electronic toilet paper ever.

Posted by: jim24 | January 19, 2010 8:07 PM | Report abuse

I know, it's an Ishamwow.

Posted by: tbva | January 19, 2010 8:49 PM | Report abuse

what are they going to release, something that is not $1,000?

Posted by: BMACattack | January 19, 2010 9:14 PM | Report abuse


I would be elated to see Apple blow the pundits and speculators out of the water by introducing an entirely new Mac Pro desktop and some innovative new pro and consumer software.

Then when Wintek gets its act together, maybe we'll see a tablet in the summer. I can wait.

Posted by: roule | January 20, 2010 12:51 AM | Report abuse

Apple should just buy the company that makes the tablet machine you can see in the TV show "Sanctuary", which is really just a MacBook with the screen flipped over and touchscreen functionality added.

Posted by: frantaylor | January 20, 2010 4:26 AM | Report abuse

bothecat... enjoyed your essay, article "End of an Era". Your detective work on Fingerworks and its implications are fascinating. While I share your enthusiasm and hope that your predictions about the table's impact on Microsoft and Windows-based PCs come true, I did have a couple of observations.

1) Lots of people will, alas, still buy netbooks because of their low cost. Perhaps over time, as the tablet's price comes down, that will change, but for now and the near future, netbooks will remain incredibly popular.

2) The Fingerworks panoply of commands looks too complicated for most users. Still, Apple is a genius at simplifying matters.

3) Your discussion of the PC's history completely ignored Apple!

Few people would say that the PC era began with DOS! That leaves out the Apple II which really began it. Plus, Visicalc began the first business-oriented use of PCs, too, and that was on an Apple.

You also left out the Mac's influence, and Word's on a Mac, which were key forces to contributing to Word Perfect's downfall. The big factor there was Word's WYSIWYG, paragraph-based approach (even if sluggish on an IBM PC) rather than the jumble of hidden codes that WP used.

This Apple Mac influence is important because it presages what the Apple tablet could do. Still, I understand your points about the history and enjoyed your article!
--------------------
As to Rob's question here about the Jan 27 event, for sure they're introducting the table or Apple's stock will drop as fast as candidate Coakley's did in Masschusetts!

Posted by: Astrogal | January 20, 2010 9:30 AM | Report abuse

Whatever it is, buying it still won't make you cool, regardless of what Apple's marketing department says.

Posted by: Wallenstein | January 20, 2010 10:11 AM | Report abuse

So you got an invite. Did the powers that be authorize a flight to California or are you going to have to stay in DC and cover it 'remotely'?

Posted by: idiparker | January 20, 2010 10:22 AM | Report abuse

This is obviously a palette, such as a painter would use. I would think that the artist's thumb-hole in an electronic palette would be unnecessary, however.

Perfect.

Apple once again changes the paradigm by revealing their new product as the "iPalette" - simply because being a new Apple product, it must be unique (or at least sufficiently different) to add value.

It will of course have to set itself apart from the market by NOT being what everyone thinks will be a tablet. One way to do that is to reveal new features to make it more than just a normal tablet. Another way is to group several of the newest functional features so that it actually IS unique as a new/unique grouping of applications & technologies.

What could they be? Start by considering what I'd like to have in the next generation of the iPod Touch. This is one of the most underrated platforms of this age. I can use it to do everything my laptop can do (functionally), except for reading & writing to optical media. Watch movies, read/send e-mail, browse the web, use VOIP, etc. All its power is limited only by the necessity of using such a tiny workspace.

If my iPod Touch were 6, 8 or 10 inches across it would be perfect. Adding an optical drive would be impressive but since Apple left that out of the MacBook Air, I don't think they would include it in the iPalette. If Apple sold an iPallete that was simply a dock for my iPod Touch (or an iPhone) that turned it into a tablet with a larger screen - that might be a good way to go too. It would leverage value back on to the products we already own. Extending the usefulness of existing technology used to be big business but today's market dictates new product replacement way too often.

Posted by: WorldNet | January 20, 2010 12:34 PM | Report abuse

@idiparker: By "travel arrangements," I didn't mean taking Metro downtown! (Though I will be taking Metro to National Airport to start the journey to SFO.)

- RP

Posted by: robpegoraro | January 20, 2010 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Doesn't all that paint splash look like a "Cloud"?

Posted by: britmonk | January 20, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

@WorldNet: sounds too much like iPalin ...

Posted by: SoloOwl | January 20, 2010 10:51 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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