I know nothing about the iTablet, the iSlate, the iScreen, or whatever machine Apple may or may not be releasing towards the end of this month. But enough Apple pundits are making predictions about the potential forthcoming non-laptop, non-iPhone that someone’s bound to be right, so here are my thoughts:
1. I think the device itself will cost in the $600 range. Add in optional Bluetooth (or similar) keyboard accessory, Bluetooth (or similar) pointer device (mouse? trackpad? something?), and optional always-on Internet, and you get to the $999 range.
2. Obviously, it’ll be multi-touch. I suspect it will be able to orient its screen in all four directions. I imagine it will include a fold-out stand of some sort, very elegantly integrated, to prop it up on a table (instead of needing to lie flat).
3. I go back and forth on whether iPhone apps will run at iPhone-screen size. How would you type in an iPhone-sized app on a 10” screen? Would the device need to triggers its full-size on-screen keyboard? Or require that you tap awkwardly at a mini-keyboard on such a large device? Either way, I suspect making iPhone apps run full-screen on the tablet, or at least “larger than normal,” will be not-overly-painful for developers. That is, once they solve their resolution issues (no small challenge), the rest will be easy.
4. Ports. None? The iPhone isn’t really “meant” to be used while charging; it doesn’t have a long AC adapter like a MacBook Pro. I predict the iThing will take a similar approach: Short charging cord, meant to be used from battery exclusively. And no, you can’t replace the battery yourself. If other ports are present, I’m thinking they’ll be MacBook Air-style, but I wouldn’t be surprised if the device sported no USB at all.
5. Besides the optional external keyboard on the virtual one, I imagine transcription will be included out of the box.
We’ll see. I hope it’s awesome, whatever it is, and I really expect to own one.