Every year, Apple leaks a little more.
Yesterday's Apple Event was surprising for a few reasons, not the least of which was the fact that many of the details leaked out ahead of time. The touchscreen iPod nano, the 99 cent TV rentals and the new iPod touch with retinal display were all rumored in some form well ahead of time. No one called Ping, though.
One big red herring was the rumored 3G connectivity for the new iPod touch. This rumor will likely continue to surface every year until Apple finally decides to throw it in. Maybe when Verizon finally gets on board?
The new shuffle came without leaks, but the changes in that platform weren't nearly as shocking as the ones to the nano. While the tiny touchscreen display was outed, no one called voice-note-taking. Really though, the rumormongers knocked this one out of the park.
Honestly, I didn't give much credence to the Apple TV rumors this time around. We've been hearing those for a while and, since Jobs went on record calling the product a "hobby", there weren't high expectations for it. Early rumors did out the new ATV as having less storage space, but no one I read said that it would be entirely streaming.
On the whole, I'd have to say Ping was the largest surprise of the day. While the TV/movie rentals were predicted, the extent of Apple's new social media venture took most of us by surprise. It's a brilliant idea though, and the motivation behind it is fairly obvious. Apple may not be competing with Facebook, but they have certainly developed a much more easily monetized network. I'm willing to bet this thing will simply pour cash once it gets going.