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Marketplace Morning Report

Apple adds ‘Air’ to its product line

Bob Moon Jan 15, 2008
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BOB MOON: Apple’s got a new line of widgets for 2008. These announcements are breathlessly awaited every year at this time, during the MacWorld Expo in San Francisco. So what did Steve Jobs unveil today? A super thin laptop turned out to be the hot new product. Which raises the question: So what?

dan ackerman: How can you compete with something as big and as exciting as the iPhone? And the short answer is you really can’t.

Dan Ackerman reviews computers for C-Net.

ACKERMAN: Nothing here is as big as the iPhone, but you do have a pretty solid line of stuff.

There’s the new laptop, dubbed the MacBook “Air.” Jobs pulled it out of a manila envelope. There’s also a revamped version of Apple TV that will allow online movie rental and purchase.

We caught up with Businessweek Editor Arik Hesseldahl on his cell phone at the big event. He says Apple is focusing on a whole new marketplace.

Arik Hesseldahl: It’s not a computer company anymore, it’s almost an entertainment company. I mean, it’s got shades of replacing your old Blockbuster in your neighborhood. It’s part of your telecommunications life.

Hesseldahl has covered tech for 12 years and says the entertainment industry is ripe for a player like Apple.

Hesseldahl: Apple’s got more than $15 billion in cash. It has an awful lot of cultural currency, so if they wanted to do this, they certainly could.

And here’s the Associated Press take on today’s announcements: It says, “They burnish Apple’s polished image as a purveyor of cool.”

Then again, investors apparently didn’t think it was all that hot. Apple Shares fell almost $10, or nearly 5.5 percent today.

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