12 Comments

Summary:

Mac Mini, the cheapest mac ever has been introduced and it clearly is a powerhouse. It is better than a iBook 14 inch and is competitively priced to some of the equally powered Windows machines. Scoble thinks it is a tad more expensive than machines sold […]

macmini1.jpgMac Mini, the cheapest mac ever has been introduced and it clearly is a powerhouse. It is better than a iBook 14 inch and is competitively priced to some of the equally powered Windows machines. Scoble thinks it is a tad more expensive than machines sold in Wal-Mart. Same logic as why is Toyota more expensive than Kia. I don’t think Apple is going to get many switchers for the device is priced $100 too much. That doesn’t meant it is not a great little computer.

Regardless, I think we are not looking at Mac Mini for its true potential. I think with this device, Apple might just have invented a new product category – the fixed mobile PC. Unlike a lot of us who jet around the country lugging around a laptop everywhere we go, there is a vast majority of people, who leave their homes early in the morning, get in their car, drive to work, where they boot up their computers and get to work. And then they do the reverse commute in the evening, and boot up their home computers. In other words, they are trying to sync home-and-work computing lives. Now with this tiny tot of a Mac, you can simply unplug and take your computer to go. It is light enough, small enough to become a fixed mobile PC.

Now think of Mac Mini as a “home media server.” Last month when rumors were flying thick and fast, Jonathan Greene very rightfully pointed out the true potential of this device. Mac Mini is perfect sitting next to your Sony FlatScreen TV. I think just like an iPod economy sprang up around the hit digital device, it is time for peripheral makers to bring to market add-ons like TV connectors, remote control modules and the sort. Elgato can turn your Mac Mini into a nice TiVo replacement. All it needs is a little imagination.

  1. Although I think the iMac Mini will be a huge success, a $500 iMac plus the cost of a solution like Elgato’s does not make for a competitive solution in the consumer electronics sphere compared to a dedicated device like a $100-$300 Tivo or an almost free solution from your local cable company. I’m sure some will do it, but it will be the more adventurous among us who do so.

    If Apple really wanted to confront this market, a dedicated device at a much lower price would be more appropriate. Oh, how I wish the Airport Express had come with video-out on it.

    Share
  2. The only thing missing that will make it a true fixed mobile PC is a dock. Who wants to plug/unplug the wires every time you move it. I predict one within the month.

    Share
  3. Now dock – isn’t that a clever idea. i hope someone gets cracking on it sooner than later.

    Share
  4. “This is the year of HD video” – Steve Jobs 1-11-05

    The Apple home media server is still making its way to market – possibly in that same 6.5×6.5 form factor. Its waiting for HD in the form of H.264/AVC, nee Tiger. Same goes for the Airport HD Express. Oh, by the way, where’s that remote that Apple has been working on since July?!!!?

    Note that iTunes will now convert higher rate AAC to 128Kbps AAC for the iPod shuffle. That’s what H.264 will do for video – provide instant conversion to whatever rate is supportable by the transport medium – whether that be wireless (WiFi, UWB (if it ever comes), 3G cellular), or wired (DVI, Firewire, etc). Can’t wait to see what happens in July.

    These budget devices make me think that SJ has read The Innovator’s Dilemma. Don’t you think so?

    Share
  5. I think you’ve hit it on the head…a new class and a ton of new uses.
    I read that some geeks have already discovered that it will fit in a standard car radio bay and are scheming :-)

    Share
  6. couldn’t agree more about the home server idea.

    the wifi option and quiet running are the 2 things which do it for me. and a cable in case i want to plug it in at the router and run it as a regular server.

    comes preinstalled with apache and php.

    Share
  7. Mini My My.

    I’m not in Apple’s intended audience for the Mini, but I think it does give dorks like me a nice little no-nonsense file/web/whatever server for the home network. However that could just be the beginning to a broader mainstream use.

    COMMENT:
    AUTHOR: Yadong

    Hmmmm… takes us back a few years. Wasn’t those boxes called ‘luggables’?

    COMMENT:
    AUTHOR: Nerve Endings Firing Away

    I don’t think Apple is going to get many switchers for the device is priced $100 too much.

    Is $100 too much to not worry about malwares? For non-computer savvy folks, how much is annoyance, computer slow-downs and lost personal info worth? How much does it cost to get it fixed or how much annoyance do they cause to relatives who visit them only they get to be a personal technician? How much is not spending time together with them worth? For computer-savvy people, what’s peace of mind worth? Yeah, you may never get malwares but sometimes you spend lots of time tip-toeing around the web, email, etc.. How much is your time worth to keep testing and updating Windows?

    Personally, even $150 is worth it for me to actually like my computer than to keep cursing at Windows.

    COMMENT:
    AUTHOR: Mladen

    “Personally, even $150 is worth it for me to actually like my computer than to keep cursing at Windows.”

    I do not get it. Why continueing with Windows if you have problems? Is it the only OS for PC? No! So just make a choice, do not be stucked.

    And about people that consider getting PC instead of Mac – do you prefer a car assembled from different vendors, and parts that “almost fit” if you are lucky. Or you prefer a car made in the same factory and tuned up. If you start to tune and select a “great” PC the price will get more or less the same. But you will have a noisy box, 2-3-4 fans (that will be “screaming” like real rock-concert fans ;-) and you will barely use the “great” but expensive performance.

    Be rational, use your existing 19″ LCD, your favourite keyboard, lovely logitec mouse and get a comfortable quite box, that will please you, give you the necessary performance, save space, and one that you will be happy with.

    Want more devices attached – USB/FireWire DVD burners are less that $100 nowadays, external drives also. And there are some with Network card integradet, so you can throw them in other room or put them on remote connection. The limitation is the imagination!

    About the dock station – I am sure from Apple did not missed it accidentally. So stay tuned ;-)

    COMMENT:
    AUTHOR: Jason Sares

    Shameless Plug for my Mac mini blog.

    I’ve got a deal listed for the mini, 17″ LCD, keyboard, mouse and printer for $670.

    Plus links pics and video of the mini taken apart.

    Share
  8. Mac mini Analysis

    Clearly a cross between the Cube and the LC, but what are the good and the bad points of the first cheap headless Mac for over 5 years?

    Share
  9. does anyone know if the Mac MINI can withstand being used in a car for itunes and other apps? can the drive handle the bumps?

    Share
  10. does anyone know if the Mac MINI can withstand being used in a car for itunes and other apps? can the drive handle the bumps?

    Share

Comments have been disabled for this post