Macworld 2008 Stevenote Highlights

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I’m no Apple fan boy, but the Macworld Keynote address by Steve Jobs is always a big deal for me and probably for the whole computer industry.

The San Francisco 2008 Stevenote was no different. Apparently, live video coverages were not permitted so I watched the entire event in streaming text and photos. did an excellent job covering the occasion which started at exactly 1:00 AM (Bohol, Philippines time) and was concluded at around 2:45 AM. In short, I slept late last night, which I always do anyway so it's no big deal.

For those of you who are from another planet, here were the highlights of yesterday’s Macworld keynote address:

* Announced Time Capsule, an Airport Extreme Base Station - with "server grade" internal hard drive. Available in two configurations:
500GB - $299
1TB - $499

* Announced iPhone Software Update, SDK Release Date, and sales performance. The iPhone has sold over 4 million units since going on sale 200 days ago. That averages 20,000 iPhones sold per day. In its first quarter shipping, the iPhone garnered 19.5% of the US Smartphone market (2nd, behind only RIM's BlackBerry). iPhone SDK Release scheduled for February

* Announced iPod Touch Software Update. 5 new apps for the iPod Touch: Mail, Stocks, Notes, Weather, and Maps. Upgrade fee is USD $20.

* Announced iTunes sales performance and Movie Rentals. As of last week, the iTunes Store has sold over 4 billion songs. A new single-day record was set this past Christmas Day (December 25, 2007) with 20 million songs sold in 24 hours. iTunes Movie Rentals: Touchstone, Mirimax, MGM, Lionsgate, Newline, Fox, WB, Disney, Paramount, Universal & Sony are all on board.

* Announced AppleTV upgrade and Price Drop. You can now rent movies directly on the Apple TV in your choice of DVD quality or HD + dolby 5.1 surround sound without a need for computer. The upgrade is available as a free software update that should be available in two weeks for current AppleTV owners. AppleTV price drops from $299 to $229.

* The most important announcement of all, ‘Macbook Air’. According Jobs, it is “the world's thinnest notebook”. Here are some of its features:
- At 0.16" to 0.76" - thinner than the thinnest part of a Sony TZ series laptop.
-Screen size is an LED backlit 13.3" widescreen with a magnetic latch
- MacBook-like keyboard, but with an ambient light sensor
- Multi-touch trackpad (iPhone-like control)
- 45 Watt MagSafe power adapter, Micro-DVI out, Audio Out, 802.11n + Bluetooth 2.1/EDR
- 1.8" hard drive, 80GB standard, or a 64GB SSD as an option
- Core 2 Duo processor. Intel shrunk the size of the chip by 60% to fit in the new machine.
- Battery (Non-replaceable) life is approximately 5 hours.
- 2GB non-expandable memory
-No optical drive but a SuperDrive accessory is available for $99.
- The case is fully aluminum (good for recycling), the first fully mercury and lead free display, circuit boards are BFR free, and retail packaging are 56% less volume than a MacBook.
- MacBook Air starts at USD $1799, available for pre-order today, and will be shipping in two weeks.
- More MacBook Air tech specs HERE

I find the 2008 keynote not as explosive as that of last year. Well, as they say it, you can’t announce an iPhone year after year. For those who still want to watch the event, a Quicktime stream is already available HERE.

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