Apple has shown time and time again they are good at creating and perpetuating their own buzz. I don’t know if today’s product releases lived up to the hype, but they were good releases for the company. I’m glad to see they continue to fully go after the new computer user. As a lifetime windows user, no matter how much easier windows xp gets, it’s never going to compare to the mac OS in terms of usability and simplicity. My personal beefs with the mac OS are usually related to it not allowing power users like me to route around the simple paths setup for new users, but with OS X I can have the command line if I want it.
I was glad to see iPhoto. I was talking with a friend a couple weeks back about digital cameras. Whenever I go to a family function now, and whip out my camera, invariably, an uncle or cousin wants to check it out, and they say things like “I want one of those, but should I get a computer too?” I have to explain to them that yes, you need a computer, then you need to get fairly proficient at using that computer, then you get some photo software, get good at that, then buy a digital camera, and put it all together (I don’t have the heart to tell them it could take a couple years of futzing around with a PC before getting very good at it). The next question is usually “how do I print photos out of it?” which opens up a whole new can of worms. Digital cameras are everywhere now, but it’s pretty hard to work with the output. I think Apple’s reaching a huge market of people that want to play with these cameras and don’t have years of experience using computers.
The new iMac is interesting. Much of the criticism of the original iMac was that it was all-in-one and not very upgradeable. Given the current low costs of new systems, is that even a problem anymore? The market Apple is aiming for won’t ever know how to put in a second hard drive, and they don’t have to. The success of the older generation iMac proved customers would rather have everything included, and not have to fuss with any wires or hardware. Ease of use won out over expandability. The new machines should continue the success of the iMac, though the features are so numerous in the top of the line model, I wonder what will happen to their tower desktop sales.