RUMOR: Apple’s ‘Brick’ really a ‘Mac Pro mini’

“Sources have indicated Apple’s ‘one more thing,’ code named ‘Brick’ rumored to be announced around October 14th along with a MacBook refresh, will actually be a re-design of the Mac Mini super-sized to reveal a Mac Mini Pro of sorts,” iPhone Savior reports.

“Apple’s ‘Brick’ mystery product is also rumored to be the fabled Tablet Mac by 9 to 5 Mac, a fantasy product that’s proven as real as Bigfoot for the past few years now. It’s been roughly 14 months since the last minor refresh to the Mac Mini,” iPhone Savior reports.

iPhone Savior says that this “Mac Mini Pro” rumor comes “from sources that we were unable to confirm as completely reliable.”

Full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Brawndo Drinker” for the heads up.]

MacDailyNews Note: “We will be delivering state-of-the-art new products that I cannot discuss today that our competitors will not be able to match.” – Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer, July 21, 2008

105 Comments

  1. Just pointing something out. Sure, the “Brick” could be one of these things discussed, but generally speaking, code words are just that — CODE words –, that do not give clues about the actual product’s qualities. A “brick” could be anything… literally anything. Not brick-like, or brick-shaped in any way. Heck, it could be software.

    That said, I really do want a mid-tower headless Mac! Been waiting for one for a long time. Those of you who say it’s a bad idea obviously just don’t see the need for such a product themselves, but there’s a _lot_ of us who still want one. If they don’t release one this year, I’ll end up getting a Mac Pro. The Mini doesn’t cut it, and I don’t want an iMac for all the reasons outlined above, and other reasons as well. And, if you don’t want an iMac for these reasons, they are very good reasons, so don’t discount them please. Though, it’s a fantastic machine for lots of people, as is the Mini!

  2. @ping: I’m not sure you understand what I want. Not a $500-1000 piece of crap like what most PC manufacturers sell, but a $1800-2400 tower with a smaller form factor than the Mac Pro but still large enough to put in a decent quad core (2 x 2 or 1 x 4), a second hard drive, 4 ram slots, and one or two PCIe slots so you can upgrade graphics and maybe add a sound card or tv tuner or something.

    Take the Mac Pro, cancel one of the two quad-core Xeons in product configuration and — boom! — you’re already there!

    There is no step three (nor really a dire need for another product line). ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />

    @ping: Apple doesn’t have to innovate their mac hardware that much.

    Not at all, actually. See above.

    @ping: Really, most of what they have done hasn’t BEEN particularly innovative. They’ve made progressively smaller and sleeker all-in-ones, progressively more powerful towers, and progressively smaller and sleeker laptops. The innovation is the software (OS, etc.), the hardware and design quality, and the integration of hardware and software.

    Maybe, if we leave the iPhone / iPod Touch platform aside for a minute.

    @ping: A tablet would not be innovative, there are tons of tablets (touch and otherwise) out there.

    And how many of these have a usability comparable to an extrapolated iPhone platform?

    There are hundreds of cellphones out there. Why did Apple have to add yet another?

    A touch user interface is no panacea, but a really usable internet pad above the size of the iPhone has its legitmate uses. Whether there could be a market big enough to justify the development effort is of course another matter.

    @ping: For the most part they are niche products and will probably remain that way for the forseeable future no matter what Apple does.

    I would be careful extrapolating from the current state of affairs. The same could have been said above the iPhone (and has been said!).

    ping: Plus it would require Apple to expensively introduce a third hardware platform in addition to the mobile and server chip sets just for that new and particularly unprofitable machine.

    @ping: How would this be expensive? The chipset and processors already exists. Intel has a desktop lineup. This doesn’t make sense.

    Oh yes, it does! It would be an entirely different motherboard, different chipsets, different chips with separate lifecycles to integrate in Apple’s product strategy and release schedules and above all it would create a long-lasting dependency exactly because of its expandability – there would have to be additional driver variants, extensions APIs; there would be additional transition headaches and support needs when people would expect (and demand!) that their internal cards should be compatible across models (Mac “midi” / Mac Pro) and across successive models even within the same lines…

    This would be a complex, worrisome, weakly margined and at best (for Apple) marginally useful product.

    Of course I could be wrong, but with a shrinking desktop market overall this is about the last thing I’d expect to actually materialize. It would be a conservative, conventional and just marginally attractive product.

    Jobs will gadly leave this segment to his PC competitors.

  3. There are a few market factors Apple simply must reply to regardless of what new features they may pioneer:

    In my experience, switchers are often people who bought PCs because everyone else had one and most admit to knowing nothing about computers. Out of a deeply ingrained fear of viruses, they don’t use their PCs for much and as such can’t envision using one for anything other than email or internet surfing. They want the promise of freedom from malware but ultimately cannot imagine the Mac experience being any different so they want an inexpensive desktop to leave in “the other room”. Clean design, style, and all-in-one seem to mean a lot to them.

    Out of the five people I have convinced to switch over the last 2 years, three bought iMacs, one bought a MacBook Pro, and only one bought a Mac Mini (but later upgraded to 17″ MBP). For them, Apple simply needed to have the right products available when these people decided to make the jump as they were so disillusioned with MicroSoft that the cost was not really a factor.

    For many youth it is a very different story. When they leave home they don’t have money and it is at this time they will justify whatever low price they can afford. Right now the Windows assemblers have a wide advantage in this market. Sub-$500 laptops are beginning to make a serious dent in overall PC sales and Apple’s current line doesn’t have an answer. As I discovered with my niece, she would pay a little more for a Mac but not 2-3 times the price of a Windows based machine, hence she is eying an Acer laptop. Apple simply must deliver a small laptop around $600 or so if they want to sell to her ilk.

    SO…. I will lay a bet on Apple releasing a small laptop and/or tablet and bet against them putting any significant R&D;into a Mac Mini. It will be modeled after the MacBook Air but smaller and cheaper. It will have a new killer feature, but like the MBA also will have all the pundits squawking over expanded networking/hardware restrictions put in place in order for Apple to protect their iTunes assets.

    Gonna be fun to watch!

  4. The Mac mini was introduced as low cost option directed at PC users wanting to try OS X side by side with the PC before they made the big switch.

    The Mac Pro mini is designed to replace that PC. There are rumors that the price points on the new MacBooks and the “Brick” will be something the competitors will not be able to match for their performance levels and OS benefits.

    The “Brick” and the new MacBooks will be the machines that PC users have been waiting for to make finally make the switch.

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