Wednesday, 16 January 2008

The MacBook Air - WTF?

Regular readers will know I am most certainly not a Mac fanboy - I get very annoyed with the trolls who spam every Digg article about Linux with "Get a Mac", and I'm quite proud of being a Linux user. That said, I don't have anything against people using Macs. OS X is quite a good OS, although I do not like the desktop - I'm very much a KDE man. I merely think they are overpriced fashion accessories. Next time I buy a laptop, assuming it's not an Eee PC, Cloudbook or Noahpad, I'm going for a Dell with preinstalled Ubuntu - my current Dell runs Kubuntu Gutsy really well, and has been going strong for three-and-a-half years.

I thought from what I had heard that the MacBook Air was going to be something along the lines of the Eee PC, but no. Instead it's a normal, expensive laptop that's so thin it fits in an envelope. And has no optical drive or Ethernet cable. Oh, big wow. For the price I could get four Eee PC's, which are more robust and more practical.

Yet the Apple faithful are crowing about it, saying "It's revolutionary! Everyone else will be doing this soon!". How is that revolutionary? It might be light, but it looks fragile and it's less portable than an Eee - you could put it in a briefcase, but not much else, whereas an Eee you can put in pretty much anything, and is more easily replaceable.

I'm not surprised Apple's share price dropped after this. I really doubt anyone else is going to try and emulate this, despite what the fanboys say. I think the future is in things like the Eee PC, and the MacBook Air is something of a white elephant. There will be people buy it (those with more money than sense), but you won't see anyone trying to emulate it, except maybe Sony, and VAIO's are going after the same market. By contrast, vendors are lining up to emulate the Eee PC. I heard rumours today that Acer are planning their own entry into the subnotebook market.

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