Forbes: What Apple CEO Steve Jobs will unveil at Macworld Expo

“For Apple fans, the wishing doesn’t end with the holiday season. They keep their fingers crossed until January, when Chief Executive Steve Jobs will deliver a keynote speech at the San Francisco Macworld Conference–filled with never-before-heard details about the company’s product lineup,” Rachel Rosmarin reports for Forbes in an article headlined, “What Steve Jobs Will Unveil At Macworld.”

“The tradition of pre-Macworld speculation and wishful thinking is inevitable, says Blackfriars co-founder and Principal Analyst Carl Howe, because Apple does nothing to guide expectations. “Unlike most of the tech world, Apple doesn’t provide road maps. They’re quite famously secretive, and that encourages speculation,” he says. Howe estimates that the frenzied buzz generated by Apple fans about the company’s next move equates to nearly $700 million in free marketing each year,” Rosmarin reports.

Rosmarin asks, “So what’s on an Apple fan’s most-cherished list this year?”

Rosmarin answers with possibilities:
• The Sub-Notebook
• The Tablet
• More iPhones
• iTunes Store Content Surprise
• Games, Cars, TVs

Rosmarin reports, “As a company with limited research and development resources, Apple can’t repeatedly jump into new markets, argues Creative Strategies analyst Tim Bajarin. In just a few short years, the company has revamped its line of desktops and laptops, entered the media player market and the music sales business and just styled itself as a phone company. ‘Over the next couple of years, I think Apple’s going to be reluctant to break new ground at the hardware level, unless they come up with something earth-shattering,’ says Bajarin. ‘And I don’t see where that could come from.'”

MacDailyNews Take: Which is why you’re an analyst, Tim, and not running or working for an innovative company like Apple. Apple has $15.4 billion and no debt. That rapidly-growing pile of cash is larger than IBM’s, Hewlett-Packard’s, Intel’s, and Google’s. So much for “limited research and development resources.”

Full article here.

57 Comments

  1. As a company with unlimited research and development resources, Microsoft can repeatedly jump into new markets and offer stunning innovations like big ass, shiny tables for the wealthy and 3-D talking paper clips.

  2. “unless they come up with something earth-shattering,’ says Bajarin. ‘And I don’t see where that could come from.'”

    Of course you and I don’t see where that could come from. That’s why MacWorld ’08 will be earth-shattering, ground-breaking and all that. Can’t be all hype.

  3. I wonder if there is any possibility at all that, for the first time ever (Steve is always looking for this benchmark) that Shepherd Jobs would take the stage and start talking to adults, business people, professionals, and main stream decision makers.

    If he did, there is a real opportunity that the long held belief that a tiny market share is some kind of badge of honor is a thing of the past.

  4. Also, it’s probably true Apple won’t be entering new market in ’08 (and even later), but rather take a giant step of evolution in all the ones they’re in, which will make them become truly dominant (not only in music). What would be the form of this evolution? Nobody knows.

  5. Bajarin has always been a pro-Apple & Mac guy.

    There have been so many rumors swirling around lately, I don’t really blame the guy for not guessing this time. How many analysts end up looking like dicks or idiots because of their off-the-mark prognostications. You can’t blame the guy for playing it a little safe.

    If you’re an Apple Rumor Monger, you KNOW that Apple famously throws out wrong information and smokescreens to keep people and the media guessing AND to trap Apple employees bent on leaking information.

    Just wait a few weeks as the rumors swirl faster and thicker.

  6. Actually, MDN, you took the “As a company with limited research and development resources, Apple can’t repeatedly jump into new markets” comment wrong. No company, not even Apple has unlimited R&D;, look at what it gets Microsoft – down the path of ruin. Apple could spend an extra 3 billion a year on R&D;and probably not hurt themselves or go off in stupid directions (Microsoft Bob anyone?). However, if they spent 15 billion a year at their current size, they would either come up with something better then the Mac and the invention of sliced bread or they would go bankrupt.

    If you read the rest of it, he is not cutting down Apple.

    MDN key word “sense” as in if you spend everything on R&D;every year, you better come up with something amazing that gets 90-95% of a giant market EVERY YEAR. Even Apple can’t do that.

  7. This type of speculation drives me bananas each year! The build-up and hype is relentless. Then Macworld and “the speech” finally take place and all too often the balloon is deflated by the end of it! Maybe I just get my hopes up????? That’s it, I’m not going to look at any more of these pre-Macworld articles again……..until tomorrow.

  8. This type of speculation, about the limited resources, and that it’s impossible to enter new markets every year, etc just means we’ll be quoting this article after MW San Fran 2008 to show how useless these analysts are……..

    Bought AAPL at $55 will sell at $400. Have faith, iMac, iPhone, iPod, 10.5 , are not flukes……..There is more to come.

  9. “. . . Apple famously throws out wrong information and smokescreens to keep people* and the media guessing . . .”

    *Such as Microsoft, Nokia, Dell, HP and many other competitors and rip-off cloners.

    Apple doesn’t want to give MS any more of a head start on Windows 7 than necessary.

  10. MDN, what makes you think a cash hoard is equal to R&D;resources? Companies have investment portfolios and the like. One does not equal the other. You’re not making any sense. All you do is grab the bash stick and try to swing it anyone that writes something that _remotely_, _vaguely_ RESEMBLES a dig at Apple. Are your writers all 17 year old fanboys or something? Can you get a grown up in there? I’m surprised you didn’t find a way to use the word ‘turd’ in this post as well.

  11. The amount of RND resources does not always limit a companies ability to innovate or produce ‘Earth Shattering’ products.
    In fact, in the last five years Apple investment in RND has slowed (refer to their end of year accounts) despite their increasing product range and shorter release cycles.
    For Apple I think it’s more about them spending only the money needed to employ the right people with the ideas and knowledge to make them a reality.
    History has shown some of the best products have been happy accidents or the simple idea of one individual. A huge pile of cash only can never create anything! It’s about the people!

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