Monday, November 10, 2003

A new Newton?

While there's all sorts of stuff (including the iTunes Music Store being named "Invention of the Year" by Time) going on today, I've decided to focus on John Dvorak's latest Apple ramblings. He's predicting a Newton II, and he might be on to something...

In this new column, Dvorak claims that Apple's overdue for a handheld device, and that one could be on the way in January. But could this really happen? Maybe...

When Steve Jobs axed the Newton after his return, the not-so-little device was just starting to catch on. Since then Palm and PocketPCs have become the major players in a shrinking and evolving market. Now there's new room innovation from Apple. The Newton II could be a mini-tablet or a larger, more powerful PDA.

But why not just stick with Palm? First, Palm got severely battered by PocketPCs in the past year and are only just starting to catch up again. On top of that, the latest, most powerful Palms use Intel processors (not to mention iSync's so-so syncing ability with the devices).

So could the Newton come back? The answer is yes, but not the way we remember it. That said, if you've never used a Newton, you don't know what you're missing out on. The later models had good handwriting recognition and an extremely simple-but-powerful OS.

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