“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.