When Steve Jobs denied that Apple was working on a netbook (small, inexpensive laptop device) during Tuesday's 4Q earnings call, it immediately set off alarm bells for a lot of people. After all, Jobs has denied that Apple was working on other products, only to have them appear months later.
New York Times columnist John Markoff has reported that an "unnamed search engine company" is seeing visits from an unannounced Apple device with a screen resolution somewhere between that of the iPhone (480 x 320) and the 13" MacBook (1,280 x 800). This is leading Markoff to believe that perhaps the long-awaited Mac netbook or new, larger iPhone tablet is going to be announced at Macworld Expo 2009 in early January. Of course, it could just be a hackint0sh that is showing up on the search engine's logs.
When Jobs mentioned during the earnings call that "We don't know how to build a sub-$500 computer that is not a piece of junk", perhaps he's telling the truth -- and Apple will have a $500, high-quality tablet or netbook to announce in January.
What's your take on the Mac netbook / tablet rumor mill? Inquiring TUAW readers want to know!