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May 10, 2005


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Very well put. I'd never thought about it that way before - but it makes a lot of sense. Wireless video.


the ambient and immersive stuff is very similar, if not the same as, some of mcluhan's theories on media


Simpsons Did It!

...errr... I mean... Sony. x2 read...

exhibit A) The Location Free Television - http://www.sonystyle.com/is-bin/INTERSHOP.enfinity/eCS/Store/en/-/USD/SY_DisplayProductInformation-Start?ProductSKU=LFX5&Dept=tvvideo&CategoryName=tv_LocationFreeTVs

exhibit B) Media Roomlink - Which was an older product as well.. http://www.sonystyle.com/is-bin/INTERSHOP.enfinity/eCS/Store/en/-/USD/SY_DisplayProductInformation-Start?CategoryName=acc_PCAccessories_roomlink&ProductSKU=VGPMR100U&INT=sstyle-cpu_accessories-catpfeature-VGPMR100U


The "ambient vs immersive" stuff is not new - it was what Steve Jobs called "background vs foreground activity", a point he made when called to comment on the possibility of video iPods, about a year ago or so.

(That said, this is an important and useful rule.)

As for this paragraph:
"And the iPod is not repeat not gonna say it one more time not meant to be a video-playback device. It’s not even remotely designed for it. The iPod has a tiny hard drive that’s designed for embedded applications, and a 32 MB (I think it is) RAM buffer cache that’s optimized for dealing with song-sized chunks of data. That’s about 4 MB. Even a half hour of HD content is gonna be half a gigabyte. There’s basically no way for the iPod to play that without constantly keeping the hard drive running, and that will burn out the drive very quickly. Seriously, under constant use, the iPod hard drives’ life spans are measured in tens of hours."

1. I couldn't care less about a video iPod at the moment
2. I don't think these have a chance of success as it is

But, that said, why's he mentioning HD along with the iPod? Do I *have* to view the videos on my iPod in my HD format? What's wrong with compressed/lossy formats?

Do you *have* to listen to your tunes in uncompressed (WAV/AIFF) format when using your iPod?

Sure, we won't achieve tiny filesizes when compressing video, but we won't be near HD-territory either.

If you take this under consideration, this argument of his carries much less weight.

Christopher Allen

I've not purchased one, but now I'm quite curious about the level of movie immersiveness when using the Sony PSP http://www.us.playstation.com/psp.aspx -- Sony is reportedly going to be offering 70+ movies for the PSP. If the experience is sufficiently immersive, then maybe that is the form factor for a "video iPod".

Philip R

ok, let´s put two and two together then. see here:


and then you know: instead of vidpod, think vidpad. this also explains why the first h.264 videos (consider them test videos) are being run through itunes (not iphoto) - it's well integrated with airport...

Small Paul

You don't have to watch videos on your videom iPod in HD, but files compressed down to iPod file size (< 10Mb) are going to be really, really crappy for any non-trivial piece.

I watched an iTMS video in small size and frankly, it was a chore.

One thing interested me:
"We sell products to people who want them to work."

Hm. Apple certainly sells iPods to people who want them to work. I reckon there's a large percentage of Mac owners who are power users, as compared to Wintel PCs and iPods (even ignoring the business space - we're just talking consumers here).


Apple also tends to put images of products its pushing in the itunes installer, and this revision happened to feature airport express, at least for me.

Jough Dempsey

It's pretty obvious that regardless of what they call it Apple will offer a portable video player at SOME point in the future.

Do people want to watch video content on the go? Other technology companies sure think so. Even cell phones are starting to be able to display low-res video. Sprint just launched a new campaign for NBC to go, etc.

And now the PSP brings high-quality video on the go in a small package.

I watch videos on my Palm Tungsten more than I do on my laptop due to its portability. I can compress PVRed video from the night before while I'm in the shower and watch the shows on my Palm while I'm on the train. I'd love to have something that was a little more robust in terms of video decompression (i.e. with a dedicated hardware GPU that could decompress Divx on the fly) and Palm's new "Lifedrive" 4Gb model will work pretty well for my needs, I think, but a 100Gb video iPod would be even better if they could dedicate hardware to video encoding/decoding.

HD is still years away from a portable because the small screen resolutions are still pretty low. The PSP seems about the best portable video has to offer at this time, but there are other portable media center devices that also work well.

And the sales of those little portable DVD players with screens are through the roof.

So Apple can't be blind to the fact that people do want video on the go.


Portable video has a mass appeal and not just to alpha geeks, but the ambient/immersive distinction does make sense.

Would also be nice if it had better games them pong!

Patrick Hall

Whether Apple will choose to go there in the near future, I don't know, but as for this statement:

"You sit down and you watch it, and you don’t do anything else until it’s over. That’s a totally different interaction model than music."

I think this is a little short sited, all told.

The reason we have that model is that we've never had portable video devices. There are already ways to extract information from our environments with digital cameras [1], why should we assume there will be no new applications of portable video?

[1] http://www.hpl.hp.com/news/2004/apr-jun/beyond_film.html


I hope this blog does not mind I 've a put an extended post at http://blog.startup.gr/blog/_archives/2005/9/10/1214941.html

which can serve as a comment on this post.
Have a look

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