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Dear Santa Steve: A Sub-notebook, iPhone stability and Aperture 2

Nik Fletcher

Dear Santa Steve,

As my most recent bank statements show: I've most certainly not misbehaved over the course of this last year. I've queued for hours in the bitter cold, and sacrificed myself endured keyhole surgery for injuries from doing so - no really, that bit isn't hyperbole. If there's anyone who's been an exceptionally well behaved Apple fan, you've got to admit I'm up there with the best of them. So what on earth could I be asking for? Just a few simple things:

13" MacBook Pro / MacBook nano Steve, I can wax lyrical about the sheer brute force of my 17" MacBook Pro - I love it, I really do. But lugging it on the train for a ninety-minute commute everyday isn't the pleasurable workout you might expect. In fact, I'd quite like a little version of my MBP, so that I pack it into a reasonably-sized Crumpler with my Nikon D80 and not resort to hiring sherpas buying a small trolley-case to travel. So what might I be asking for? If you were to start by making the display 13 (matte) inches or there abouts, and keep a dedicated GPU, that'd be ace - a machine Aperture would love. In fact, you could even remove the optical drive from the body, and use SSD if you really, really, wanted. I can hear Jonny Ive say 'SSD may be a little way-off yet' in the background, but you get the idea? All I'm asking for is a modern-day 12" PowerBook. I've sold my soul to Cupertino maximised my overdraft told the bank not to block large charges from my local Apple Store, and you've got my bank details. So let's work something out, for I can't be the only one asking for such a machine this year.

Stability in my iPhone This one's arguably simpler Steve, what with it not requiring you to design any new hardware. I'd like my iPhone's iPod and Safari applications to get on better than you and John Sculley. I'm sorry, that was perhaps a little too forceful but I think I made my point. A software update to the device that brings some new functionality would be most welcome too, what with it being 'all about the software' and the SDK on the horizon.

Aperture 2 This one may seem out of place for Stevemas - for general wisdom places Macworld as the launch of more consumer-orientated products - so I'll happily be told 'be patient, my child' for this one. But with Aperture now the last of your professional applications not to see a notable (paid) update, I'm hopeful that whatever may be in the works arrives sooner rather than later.

There's but one more thing, and I'll be content for a while Steve. In fact, if there's one thing I'd choose from my requests this year, it would be this.... Let's take these big-media names to task, and encourage investment in, not criminalisation of, those who do buy their content online. Towards the end of 2007, Apple seemed to lose their iTunes momentum despite the year getting off to a good start. EMI went on the offensive, trying to capture hearts and minds by dropping DRM from their download sales. But since then, we've seen little continuation in the dream of eradicating DRM from our digital lifestyles. Steve, in 2008, all I want is for Apple to help bring the media industry back to serving the needs of its customers as a business model. Let's make it less of the iTunes Extortion and Shakedown Store, and all about the music once more.

There's cookies by the side of the MacBook Pro - and green tea simmering on it. Enjoy.

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