Apple e-Book Reader Captures The Market.

At a surprise late afternoon press event, Apple announced its new e-book reader, the Apple Book, which will compete directly with Amazon’s Kindle. In a stunning move that has vaulted the e-book industry from sputtering to red hot, the company said it had shipped 14.5 million units in the three hours after its announcement.

“What the fucking hell?!” said a visibly angry Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.

“I spent like four years of my life working on this stupid thing! Now it’s been out like three weeks and it’s dead. Poof! Kaplooie! Game over, man!”

Muttering to himself, Bezos walked off, kicking the dirt and loudly slurping on a juice box.

“I fricking hate Steve Jobs.”

Essentially an iPod touch with a larger screen, the Apple Book downloads e-books via WiFi or syncing from the now horribly, horribly misnamed iTunes Store thanks to a partnership with Amazon rival Barnes & Noble. While these features actually trail those of the Kindle, the feature that is likely the primary cause for the device’s immediate success is the fact that the Apple Book is free and books are priced significantly lower than what Amazon charges. Customers simply supply a credit deposit upon receiving each Book and will be charged $500 less the amount of media they’ve purchased over the five year term of a contract.

Further, contrary to Amazon’s system, the Apple Book does not use DRM for e-books, relying instead on the same god damn system that’s been used for, you know, actual books for hundreds of years: making stuff that people want to buy.

Asked to explain how Apple could do this and still expect to turn a profit on the venture, CEO Steve Jobs said “We’re going to make it up on volume of books, movies and music sold. The reason Amazon has to charge $400 for the Kindle is because they don’t think it’s going to be adopted that quickly or that they’re going to sell that many e-books. Also, it’s fricking butt ugly. Have you seen that piece of crap? Holy hell. Makes me want to stab my eyes out with something pointy. Hey, Jeff! 1992 called! It wants its design ethic back! Ha-ha-ha!”

The gathered Apple executives, particularly Jonathan Ive, howled with laughter.

“Anyway,” Jobs continued, holding his aching sides and wiping tears from his eyes, “we’re going to move a ton of these suckers and sell a shitload of media.

“Razor blades and handles, my bitches. Razor blades and handles.”

Jobs was suddenly taken aside by senior vice president of worldwide marketing Phil Schiller who whispered in his ear briefly.

Returning to the stage Jobs said “Actually, I’ve just been informed that we recouped all of our hardware costs about fifteen minutes ago. And we made enough to buy every Mac user a pony.”

Seeing the hopeful looks on the faces of the collection of mostly Mac-using reporters in the audience, Jobs quickly added, “But I’m not going to do that.”

Reporters then sighed heavily.

The Apple Book is available at an Apple Store near you immediately.

Some Dude In Nigeria Has Your .Mac Sync

In a disappointing announcement, Apple admitted today that some dude in Nigeria has your most recent .Mac sync.

“We’re not sure how it happened, said an embarrassed senior vice president of software development Bertrand Serlet. “But everyone’s .Mac syncs have been going to this dude in Nigeria.

“For, uh, like five years. Whew! Boy, is there egg on our faces!”

Serlet indicated that he wasn’t sure why anyone hadn’t noticed until now.

“There are only about 14 people actually using .Mac syncing, so that might be part of it. Also, Mac users don’t really have any sensitive information. It’s all phone numbers, recipes, comic book collections and kitty pictures.

“Really. They’re the lamest bunch of losers I’ve ever had the misfortune of trying to sell crap to.”

While this raises serious issues for OS X security, testing indicates that this announcement does not impact Leopard’s Back to My Mac feature, which allows a user to connect to a Mac remotely using a .Mac connection.

“Yeah,” said Macworld’s Chris Breen, “Our testing shows that Back to My Mac is not affected.

“‘Cause ‘Back to My Mac’ doesn’t work. Seriously. I’ve been trying for days and I can’t get the damn thing to work at all. So, no problemo there.”

Further, sources in Nigeria say the dude, Ajani, is totally cool and would never use your .Mac sync for nefarious purposes anyway so…

Apple Release Notes To Get More Cryptic.

Apple’s release notes, oft criticized for their scarcity of information, are about to get even more cryptic.

When Apple delivers the iPhone 1.1.2 update tomorrow, sources say, the company will have the release notes performed by mimes, the first in its new strategy for the medium.

“Many developers do not realize this,” said Apple’s senior vice president of software engineering Bertrand Serlet, “But we consider our release notes to be performance art.

“We tried a minimalist style – giving out as little information about a particular update – and it apparently wasn’t popular so we’re taking it in a different direction. Now our users can have a greater appreciation for the pathos, humor and joie de vivre of the iPhone 1.1.2 update than can be expressed through the mere written word.”

Some, however, expressed concern over the move.

“Apple should really be careful here,” said TidBITS‘ Adam Engst. “Because some people really hate mimes. Like all people. It’s one of the few things that brings people of all kinds together. Except the French, of course.”

Indeed, according to the Anti-Defamation League, the number of hate crimes against mimes was greater in 2006 than those against any other group, with the exception of gay black Jewish lawyers.

It’s still unknown exactly how mimes will be able to convey complex ideas such as “There is a known issue with garbage-collected applications using Core Image to process frames from Core Video”. But Serlet insisted that Apple followers will be swept away by the emotional power of a mime performing release notes such as “Xcode now passes the path to the SDK in use to Rez using the -isysroot flag”.

Apple customers are asked to tip the mimes whatever spare change they have and to refrain from kicking them, no matter how great the temptation.

Tablet! Tablet! Tablet!

Amazing news rocked the Apple world today as a furtive comment at a dinner party has confirmed that Apple is working on a tablet device.

In the world of Apple rumors, it doesn’t get any more rock-solid than a furtive comment at a dinner party.

As exciting as this news is, it also has implications for the rumor business. Many Apple observers have long considered the tablet device to be the Holy Grail of Apple rumors.

“We may be looking at the end of the Apple rumor business,” said AppleInsider’s Ryan Katz. “I mean, after this, I got nothing. What else is there? We did the Intel switch. We did the phone. What’s left?”

Other than the sexbot beat (double entendres are fun!) which currently is only being worked by reporters at Crazy Apple Rumors Site, sources indicate that the rest of the rumor sites are just working on the tablet, the 10.5.1 update and what Greg Joswiak had for lunch.

“It was a soup of some kind,” said ThinkSecret’s Nick dePlume. “Could have been chili. We’ll have an exclusive on today’s lunch sometime later in the week.”

“This lunch beat is a daily grind,” dePlume complained.

The rumors sites will be holding a general symposium next week to discuss other crap we can make up that Apple might possibly maybe release some day, some time in the future.

Apple Announces the Apple White Slave.

In a surprise announcement on today’s quarterly call with analysts, Apple said that it was adding a new product line that would revolutionize yet another industry: slave trading.

“When we were looking into this, we were surprised at how inefficient slave trading is today,” said Apple CEO Steve Jobs. “Scarce supply, erratic prices often driven by the proximity of law enforcement or the balance of one’s cocaine bill with the buyer. The Apple White Slave takes the guesswork out of finding quality slave labor.”

Jobs said that Apple’s White Slaves – all of which are adults between the ages of 18 and 30 – would all be offered at one flat price of $10,000.

This prompted some analysts to deride the lack of choice.

“This is just another example of how it’s always Apple’s way or the highway,” said Rob Enderle of the Rob and Mary Show. “Let’s say you’re looking to acquire several 9-year-olds. Well, Apple’s not interested in your business.

“This is why they’re going to go out of business any day now. I mean, have you heard they’re into slave trading?! And no 9-year olds! What is up with that?!”

Jobs did point out, however, that despite the name, the Apple White Slave is an equal opportunity forced labor solution.

“White is not in reference to the slave’s race,” Jobs noted. “It’s in reference to a wonderful program, just like (Product)Red program that’s currently available in our iPod lineup. See, it’s not the Apple White Slave, it’s the Apple White Slave. See the difference? And for every Apple White Slave you buy, a portion of your purchase goes to Project White.

“Which, ironically, helps fight the white slave trade. But you know…

Jobs did say, though, that the Apple White Slave is not for sexual purposes – as the term “white slave” is usually used – and that violation of this term of the license agreement could result in “bricking” of the Apple White Slave.

Although he did not explain how exactly that would happen.

It’s thought that this particular stipulation was added to protect future sales of the Apple Sexbot.

The Apple White Slave will go on sale immediately and be offered exclusively through Apple retail stores on a large wooden block to be added in the back.