What's On Your Laptop Wish List?

24 Comments

Earlier this morning I received a press release from In-Stat, a market research firm, outlining the findings of a survey they conducted on how PC usage in North America is changing. One of their key findings: We are spending way too much time on the computer — more than 48 hours per week, on average. Bad news for old TV, I suppose.

We are apparently a nation of PC addicts, lugging around laptops on our vacations. Nevertheless, given our obsession with PCs, isn’t it time we start getting better machines from the guys who make them?

In-Stat says that consumers increasingly want more wireless options on their computers — everything from wireless accessories to wireless peripherals to wireless connectivity, of course. I agree. And I would add to that list machines that don’t turn into cooking appliances after three hours of use, risking permanent disfigurement. (Are you listening, Mr. Jobs?)

That’s my laptop wish list. What’s on yours?

24 Comments

Dimitrios Matsoulis

Internet connectivity 100% of the time, connection reliability like a mobile telephone. Unfortunately, this does not only depend on laptop manuafacturers :-(

Andy Davies

An eee PC in the form factor of the Palm Foleo would be good for me…

obo

An Eee with a 10-inch screen and 10-hour battery. Barring that, a new eMate — 20-hour battery life, basic apps, relatively open SDK, WiFi.

How the hell did Apple screw up the eMate so badly, anyway? Oh, yeah, that’s right — they made it too expensive and mostly sold it to schools. Darn thing could’ve saved the Newton.

Joseph Pally

“We are apparently a nation of PC addicts, lugging around laptops on our vacations”

Laptops are a hassle. esp. while on a vacation. I stopped carrying one 2 years ago. Everything should be on the web, and machines that access the web should be everywhere (hopefully with Windows/IE on it!)

I see much of it going into cell phones.

Kawika Holbrook

11″ MacBook. Half an inch thick. Carbon fiber case. Longer battery life. I’d trade a DVD drive for 3G broadband card built in. Tuesday, January 15, can’t come soon enough.

thingslikerobots

I agree the CD/DVD drive is becoming less useful, but for the mass market, it is still very much a necessity. Let’s not forget that the general sentiments here are not indicative of the “current wants and needs” of the mass market, which is the market these products are designed for.

I think there’s room in the marketplace for a specialty brand designed for traveling business powerusers, but if successful, it would likely be swallowed up by a box pusher like Dell and become homogeneous again.

Perhaps software makers could start using USB flash media for installation media, as a replacement for DVD/CD media. USB is not going anywhere, flash media is certainly more expensive, but the scale that this adoption would create would likely drive the cost of flash media down to where it is comparable to DVD/CD Media. You could also recycle the USB media and use if for general file / media storage, whereas DVD’s and CD’s generally wind up in a landfill somewhere when you are finished with them.

Anne Zelenka

For me, my 15″ MacBook Pro is fine. Run cooler? I guess. I try not to use it outside the office. More wireless options? Hrm. I guess I’d like a 3G USB card, for if I ever left my house ;)

For my 11-year-old son (getting a laptop for xmas), I want this: under $500, doesn’t require extra security software, supports basic web browsing and word processing. He wanted something that would run Insaniquarium, but he lost, because he’s getting a Wii from Grandpa and that’s enough game excitement. I ordered an Asus Eee.

Jesse Kopelman
  • A good convertible well equipped for < $1,000.

  • Cheaper 3G and/or WiMAX — say something in the $30/month range as an add-on to a voice plan.

Andy

My laptop wish list had been a flexible laptop desk for long and I have been lethargic for long. Yesterday I finally gave in, browsed internet and found futura http://www.laptopdesk.net/laptopdesk_futura.html . So far it has been just great as heat insulator.

Now a fast boot time laptop would just make it perfect!

Jason

Can someone please make a sub-$1000 laptop just for web surfing? Ideally, this is a touchscreen tablet with a virtual keyboard, like a scaled-up iPhone. The experience of surfing the web on the iPhone is stellar, but just needs to be scaled up for on-the-couch use while watching TV. And, no, the ultra-mobile PCs don’t cut it.

I’m expecting this will come from Apple at some point, I’m just getting tired of waiting.

Michael Caton

Always better battery life.

The MacBook has a good blend of size, weight and performance. Apple needs to think about offering a port replicator/docking station. While I use the MacBook around the house a lot, I’d like to be able to put it on my desk and get one-click access to a bunch of peripherals and the power supply.

I don’t feel the MacBook gets too toasty. While I like the power cord connector, I am apprehensive about the cord between the power supply and notebook, which seems flimsy.

Andrew

Light. Quick boot. Battery life.
EEE PC scores well on two of the above, and gets bonus points for price and for free/open source operating system.

Zac Garrett

10 Hour battery life with wifi enabled. Most laptops today get really bad battery life in the grand scheme of things. Even some of the “better” ones get 4-5 hours. If you start turning things on that time goes down to close to nil.

They should replace things such as the dvd drive with a larger battery. I hardly ever use my cd/dvd drive and an external would be good enough for those few times.

Seeing that I want a larger battery the weight then becomes an issue as the battery is one of the heaviest components. Having a heavier laptop would not bother me if the sucker worked for 10 hours. However a smaller laptop would get better battery life with a smaller battery.

I like my macbook pro just fine and see no current reason to replace it.

rohit

just give me a 1 second fast boot-time off on-board flash in to a basic browser environment (PC or mac) and i will be happy. and oh yeah – quit abusing me as a customer mr. apple by shipping pointless graphic enhancements laden “next-gen” OSes and batteries that die etc etc…

eventually i want to be carrying around any number of ‘thin’ devices (iphones, ipods, ironkeys, camera CF cards…) auto-synced to my “PC” in the sky that has my data/media. if i buy an ipod in india, i want to be able to sync it to my pc in the sky, not my laptop/desktop in USA…

Jonathan

On my wishlist:

A 15-inch regular MacBook! I’d like the $1500 model to ship with a larger and sharper screen, not necessarily a change of paint. It’s about time Apple recognize that larger screens aren’t locked into pro models.

More dedicated graphics options. I don’t want to have to go to a larger or more expensive system just to avoid being stuck with integrated video.

Carrier-independent, multi-format 3G (and WiMAX) built-in: let me buy my system, take it to my carrier, and sign up for data service. Don’t make me pick one provider and lock into a contract if I don’t want one.

randy

simply, less weight for the power. i am a computer professional who travels way too much, with a laptop that is my only computer. so i need big cpu/ram/disk and high res. hence i use a gamer machine (dell repackaged alienware), as that’s how you get power. well, it weighs waaaay too darned much.

Sebastian

I have two broad wishes:

  1. Make prettier (or more pretty) laptops. I’m sick of these ugly, grey pieces of plastic everybody has. Yes, you’re doing better than a year ago. But most laptops are still pretty ugly.

  2. Do more innovative stuff:

    • I want to have a 3G connectivity device included in my laptop.
    • Remove the CD/DVD drive, it’s useless.
    • Give us synchronization software so that a laptop can finally be a complement device to the traditional PC.
    • Flash memory, anyone?

Don’t let Apple be the only innovative laptop maker out there, give yourself a reason to exist!

Curtis

Seemless broadband connectivity with any network of my choice. No additional effort required, other than turning it on and choosing a broadband service provider.

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