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Apple rumor roundup: pipe dreams, Lala's role and Verizon's iPhone 4G

Darren Murph
01.21.10
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In case you haven't noticed, things are getting out of hand in the world of Apple rumors. Frankly, it's all we can do to read another one and trudge onward, but hey -- we've no problem with folks putting their reputations on the line here. Let's dig in to the latest pair, shall we?

The rumor: Apple's acquisition of Lala will actually lead to customers having access to an "online locker" for multimedia. This could be a cloud storage location for one's iTunes library, enabling them to have access to their jams and vids even when away from their at-home storage. The trick is that the cloud would only hold the metadata, and streaming would originate from somewhere else on Apple's end.
Our take: Okay, so we want to believe. Just imagine if your next Apple tablet or iPhone knew exactly what songs you owned in iTunes, and at a moment's notice, you could tap into the iTunes store and stream full, unedited versions of those songs from anywhere. Amazing, no? Problem is, the bulk of iTunes libraries aren't made up of content that was purchased in iTunes (or purchased at all). It seems that the best Apple could do would be to negotiate streaming deals for content you've actually purchased within iTunes, which results in a half-baked user experience. Last we checked, Stevie J wasn't much on half-baked user experiences.

The rumor: Astoundingly, the mythical Apple tablet won't be the company's "one more thing" next week; instead, it'll be a refreshed iPhone... that works on Verizon Wireless. Oh, and iPhone OS 4.0. So says Canaccord Adams analyst Peter Misek, anyway.
Our take: Ha! Apple has never been one to showcase too much at one time, and we're guessing that the outfit would be smart enough to withhold a new iPhone introduction for a separate press event. We don't doubt that a Verizon iPhone is in the works (though an LTE version will be at least a year or two out), but there's no way Jobs steals the tablet's thunder by giving every rabid iPhone user hot sweats when considering the switch to Big Red. Bottom line? Don't bank on it.

At this point, we reckon everyone would be best served by taking a huge step back, a deep breath and one of those so-called "chill pills." Next Wednesday ain't so far away, now is it?

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