Yes, Apple rules — but… ho hum

I don’t want to add to my reputation as a wet blanket, and I would like to state for the record that I like Apple a lot — really. Their products are great, and I know that they dominate the digital music business and are raking in piles of cash, not to mention having really cool laptops and some great software. But I must admit that Steve Jobs’ big keynote speech at Macworld seemed a little, well… lacklustre.

I know that’s probably because I’m not a daily Apple user, and it’s also because I probably got a little too excited by reports from and others that the company was going to announce a Mini-style DVR or an entertainment hub, or even a giant HDTV with a computer in it, and they didn’t. When you get all warmed up for faster-than-light drive, anything else seems like a letdown. Even the Tao of Mac wasn’t that impressed.

At the same time though, Apple didn’t really announce anything that knocked my socks off, and Russell Beattie seems to feel the same (although he’s a known turncoat who renounced Apple and went back to Microsoft). Yes, the new MacBook sounds pretty good — but not radically, insanely great. And the new iWeb software sounds good too, and so does the oPod remote, and the other stuff. But there was nothing really stand-up-and-shout-out-loud great. I guess selling a gazillion iPods and almost a billion songs is good enough.

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