*NOTE* Personally, I am not a Mac man. I love their design, and I like what I hear about the stability, but I do not like the price that you pay for these things. I am a cheap bastard. If they were giving them away though, I would take one in an instant to play with it, compare it with my windows laptop (Currently a Dell Latitude D830), and invariably fall in love with Macs I am sure.
I am, however, a somewhat techie type of person, and I have to wonder if some of the features on this new thin machine are going to be spreading through the rest of the laptop market. There are a couple of things in particular that worry me.
- The fact that they have removed the CD drive, and recommend setting up 'Remote Disc' to install any cd or dvd based software title from another machine in your wireless network, or using a USB-based external cd drive. If I am spending the $1800 dollar retail price that they list, I should not NEED another computer to install software. And if I just laid down that dough for a laptop that is 3/4" thick, why would I want to carry around a drive that is thicker than my laptop? Maybe this is the beginning of the the end for CD-ROM drives, and they will be going the way of the floppy, but I know a lot of people still rely on purchasing software in a box for any number or reasons. And as Rich states, installing big programs (think Adobe CS3) over WIFI sounds like a pain in the rear.
- There is only ONE USB PORT on the whole stinking machine. I can relate to wanting to get rid of the cluster-fuck of ports on a computer, but in this day-and-age only having 1 USB port seems like suicide, especially if that one port is being used for your new external CD drive! Personally, I hate touchpads and pencil-nub cursors. I need a mouse, so there is 1 USB port taken up. I am one of those quirky people that keeps handy things on my 8GB flash drive too, so there is another USB port that I need on occasion. God forbid I should still be using a hard-wired printer, as that will need USB. And what about all those digital pictures that I take? Yep, USB. I think this would be the biggest inconvenience on the new macbook if I were using one.
- .74 inches thick is REALLY thin, that is the idea, but it makes me wonder how durable the thing is. They do offer the cool option of having a 64GB solid-state storage device so that you don't have to worry about moving parts keeping your files safe, though this almost doubles the price of the laptop (to $3098). I know even with my comparatively thick Dell, I worry about putting any pressure on the lid that might cause the LCD to bend too much, and with the new Mac, I think I would be worried about the same for the base.
- No network port? Wait are you serious? So if you don't have a wireless network handy then you are screwed for Internet? Staying at a hotel with wall-jack Internet, but no wireless? Guess you will have to go wardriving till you find a hot-spot. This just completely blows my mind. I understand that wireless is becoming the thing of the future, and with wireless-N built in it is very capable in that department. As of right now though, there is not wireless everywhere you go and I don't know that I would be willing to go wireless-only with the wireless-service available in my area. This is definitely not the I (as a technician) would want to take to a client's house to get something done, but then again I don't think that is it's intended purpose.
In the end I think that this is a very pretty-looking laptop that I would be afraid to take out into the real world. But man would I be the coolest guy at work with it sitting on my desk (USB hub connected of course). For now though, I will stick with my Windows machine that needs to be re-imaged every 6 months or so, and doesn't have all the flash and style of the new Mac-book. Who cares what other people think anyway, right?