“The rumors about what Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs might unveil in his keynote speech run the gamut from a new movie-rental service for iTunes and Apple TV to a new tablet PC,” Arik Hesseldahl reports for BusinessWeek.
“But when guessing what Apple will do in the coming year, it’s particularly helpful to look at the roadmap of Intel, which has been Apple’s only chip supplier since 2006. And from the looks of things, the chipmaker may help lead Apple into uncharted, possibly lucrative, territory starting in late 2008,” Hesseldahl reports.
“Right now, the smallest MacBook sports a 13.3-inch screen and weighs a hefty 5 pound,” Hesseldahl reports. “That’s why it’s time for Apple to launch a new product some are calling the MacBook Mini, with a screen of less than 10 inches and weighing no more than 2 pounds. A new family of Intel chips named Silverthorne may go a long way toward helping Apple get there.”
“I’d expect the new little notebook to ship without a traditional hard drive, relying instead on at least 32 gigabytes of flash memory for storage,” Hesseldahl reports. “But will this new mini-MacBook also get a touch screen like the iPhone’s? Perhaps, but probably not. The bigger the screen, the more it will cost. I think that means Apple will skip the multitouch screen to keep the retail price manageable.”
Much more in the full article, in which Hesseldahl also notes that the “possibility of squeezing an x86 chip like Silverthorne inside a future iPhone would make adapting software from a future Mac computer for Apple’s handheld substantially easier,” here.