Let’s play the old what if game. It seems that we are all now in agreement that some sort of tablet device is coming from Apple, even if people keep backtracking on their previous statemenets.
But what if, just if, we have it wrong? What if there is no tablet coming from Apple for the foreseeable future? Apple has yet to tell us anything at all, so at this point, all we have is consensus around rumors. Not 100% accurate.
What would the effects be if Apple, at their upcoming event, does not release a tablet? What would they announce? What would happen? The scenario is as follows:
It is a late day in January, and the rumored Apple tablet event has concluded, without a tablet. People are a bit stunned, shocked at the lack of the device they so wanted to buy. Bloggers are typing away, causing 18 Macbook pros to start to melt. Even Fox News picks it up as a commie plot. We have a situation.
What might happen at a tablet-less event:
Apple releases a new product or two, and perhaps a few upgrades to their previous hardware products:
Apple has to do something at their event, they would hardly invite us all and then chide us for being rumormongers with huge audiences. That would just hurt.
So perhaps Apple drops a version of iTunes into the cloud? Or they might announce a partnership with Boxee to get the latest version working on the Apple TV. Hell, the whole Apple TV could use a refresh. Oh, it could just be a speed-bump for the Macbook Pro line. Now wouldn’t that just be sad.
Apple promises a tablet “in the future:”
Punting. Apple should have by now noted that we will all buy anything that they make, and a potentially high margin item such as the tablet is almost sure to make them endless cash. They may just say “we are doing it! Come back later!” At which point we all rush the stage looking for answers. Can you imagine six more months of this sort or gossip?
Apple could just does nothing. No event, no pizazz, no Jobs. All the tech world heads to the nearest bar and tucks in like Christmas was just canceled. Well, I mean, it was, right?
The markets the next day:
Apple stock takes a dive?
No tablet? Then no market cap for you! Apple stock would take a veritable beating the next day if no tablet appears at the correct moment. From what I can tell, the tablet is already priced into AAPL stock. No tablet, no dice. Look for a 5 to 10 percent drop in a day, and then a 50% recovery to pre hype-fail levels.
Amazon stock picks up a few points?
With the iSlate out of the way, Amazon is going to rule the print to digital content roost for time to come. The nook be damned, Amazon is assuredly waiting on its toes to see if Apple is out to attack their new niche.
Other tablet makers scream?
Everyone else that does make a tablet drops press releases on their devices, and mocks Apple for being backwards. Yeah, that will sound a little ironic.
Technology Sector Fallout:
We all begin to miss the CrunchPad even more:
Ever since the tablet that we all first fell in love with flamed out like Alex Tew, we have been pinning our hopes ever more on Apple. Without Apple, we shall bemoan the loss of our first love. Come back to us, little Crunchpad, we have candy.
Every single tech blog hides in shame for a week:
If there is no tablet, we need to apologize to the world for burning around 6000 blog posts on the topic. Hell, how many have you written? I bet that if you look back through Techmeme, some 10% of all top headlines were Apple tablet related. Wow.
Apple’s ability to fool the world by doing nothing is finally diminished:
We finally give up the collective world circle-jerk of talking about Apple. Let’s face it, they are still a niche player. Perhaps we all finally calm down and get over ourselves, and Steve.
We all stop creating news about our desires and work on what the news actually is:
Naw, that is never going to happen.
Martin Bryant contributed to this article.
Read next: Nexus One, Droid: Fast, but Still Not iPhone