Mini-Me blows them away with his new, megawide PowerBook

The big, oriental guy reaches up from his seat during his flight and takes out his SMALL laptop from the overhead luggage compartment. He opens it up and starts playing around with some basketball video. The small, bald midget dressed in black sitting next to him - Verne Troyer or "Mini-Me" from "Austin Powers: The Spy who Shagged me" - looks across and thinks "I'll show him - I can do better than that!". He promptly unbuckles his seat-belt, launches himself off his seat and gets out his BIG laptop from his bag in front of him, and then proceeds to watch some high-powered kung-fu DVD movie. He keeps looking up at the big oriental guy to see if he's admiring his nice BIG laptop, whilst the big oriental keeps looking down discretely at the midget's BIG laptop, trying his best not to be noticed by "Mini-Me". In the end they both give up the game and start laughing!
This is how Apple's marketing muscle is currently hyping on TV in the States and the UK its latest inch-thick ultralight laptops - the new PowerBooks - all designed to make it easier to manipulate digital video, music and photos. They are being hyped as "The next best thing from Apple".
The new, smooth engineering miracles - compact 12 and vast 17-inch versions of the PowerBook G4 were unveiled at the company's Macworld 2003 Conference in San Francisco.
Apple will also begin charging $49 for a multimedia software bundle called iLife that includes updates of popular programs such as iMovie, iDVD, iTunes and iPhoto.
The latest version of iMovie includes a feature that allows users to pan across a still photo, superimposing text or motion. We can expect a lot more Saddam and "Comical Ali" virus emails this summer!
Another of the innovation's included will allow users to email home videos with their favourite music playing in the background.
Apart from the fact that it has the largest ever eye-popping notebook display in history, the coolest thing about the 17-inch PowerBook G4 is that it features a unique fibre optic backlit keyboard with laser-etched keys that's like something out of a new Spielberg sci-fi blockbuster. A light sensor automatically adjusts the keyboard and screen brightness based on the available ambient light. So if your boss is making you burn the midnight oil in some dark little office, or you find yourself sitting next to "Mini-Me" and watching some DVD during a night flight between Sydney and New York, no worries. The PowerBook just automatically lowers its display backlight and turns on light-emitting fibre optic strands located under the backlit keyboard. So you can continue to work or play, without having to stare at some glaring display or strain your poor eyes in the dark groping for those right keys! What a relief for sore, laptop-tortured eyes!
It launched in the US in February priced $3299, around ?2000. The 12-inch version costs $1799, or around ?1100.
"OK. - watch out Mini-Me, I'm saving up!"

Bruce Wenham, April 2003

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