As usual whenever Apple releases something, the fans (many of them posers) would praise it. In this case, its the new Mac Mini and iPod Shuffle.
The Mac Mini is supposed to compete with low cost PCs by NOT including a monitor, keyboard and mouse. It comes with a rather pathetic 256Mb RAM and 40Gb Harddrive although to Apple's credit, they did include a DVD writer. Oh wait! No its not included! Instead the optical drive would be a DVD/CD-RW combo drive. It would costs £340 in the UK.
While that sounds cheap, it is not. Comet UK for example sells a Hewlett-Packard A708 base PC with 256Mb RAM, 80Gb Harddrive storage and a DVD writer for only £300. Yeah, so the Apple might look 'nicer', but technology wise, their customers are getting a bad deal for what is essentially yesterday's technology. I have to admit it is small, half the size of the doomed Mac Cube, but there are small PCs out there too.
The iPod Shuffle is even worse! It costs £99 for a 1Gb version. While this is not a bad price for flash based digital music player - this one does not come with a LCD screen! So you can't see what you are playing! In the Sandisk Silver contains a 1Gb drive and screen for £100.
Unfortunately the media seems to be taking Apple just too seriously. Remember the iMac that made a big splash in the 1990s? Well where are they now? The iPod Shuffle and Mac Mini will undoubtly sell to many, especially those ill imformed or too caught up in the hype (trend followers and fashionist). If you really need to use Mac OS X, then by all means get the Mac Mini - however be warned that OS X is not at all polished as it seems. It looks nicer than Windows XP or any Linux distributions but its as buggy as hell (I am forced to use one at work).
Avoid the iPod Schuffle though. There are way better flash based digital music players out there.