Steve Jobs may at times (reputedly) display all the charm of an angry rattlesnake whose tail has just been trodden on when he throws one of his temper tantrums, but it's not hard to see the man is something of a marketing genius. It's difficult to think of any technology company other than Apple capable of generating quite such a level of fevered anticipation as the forthcoming Tablet.
I was initially interested in this from the ebook and magazine-reading point of view, although it's certain to be a multi-tasking device primarily oriented towards net-browsing or films and (even better) networked games. I'm sure I read somewhere it was expected to use an OLED screen. I've never seen one in action, but if the technology is all it's cracked up to be, maybe it really is the e-ink successor. I'm not well-informed enough to be able to say.
Would I get one? Well, probably not - unless my royalties take a sudden kick upwards - but I'd like to. It's the same with the iphone. I'd love one, but the cost for me is still prohibitive. In fact, I've never spent more than thirty quid for a pay-as-you-go mobile. I use an iBook, but it was bought as a refurbished model for half the price of an off-the-shelf equivalent in the Apple stores.
On the other hand, I read a forum somewhere on the subject of the new tablet - it might have been at mobileread.com - that got me thinking the tablet might turn out to be much, much more than just a tablet, It could very easily turn out to be a desktop or portable computer with only a slight twist on current Apple designs.
It's arguable the Apple tablet computer already exists. Take a look at any iMac, and you'll see a flat slab of screen on a moulded plastic stand, accompanied by a wireless keyboard and mouse. Reduce the screen size and make the stand a foldaway clip round the back, and you have a tablet.
All you need after that is a standard wireless Apple keyboard and mouse, and you're looking at a shrunken iMac - and if it does have an OLED screen, one you can use in full daylight. And if there's one thing that gets me enthusiastic, it's the idea of being able to actually sit in the sun while I work instead of being permanently squirreled away in a dark room with the curtains closed in order to be able to see what I'm looking at.
That would be nice.