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Apple livid over Toshiba iPod leak

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Apple livid over Toshiba iPod leak
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Antimatter Man
Join Date: May 2004
Location: that interweb thing
2004-06-04, 13:37

just got forwarded this...


Originally posted at ThinkSecret
Apple livid over Toshiba 60GB hard drive blunder
June 3, 2004 - Apple executives are reported to be "more than a little mad" Wednesday after published reports that a Toshiba hard drive manager officially confirmed a new 1.8-inch hard drive with a 60GB capacity would soon be in full production and that Apple had committed to buying the drive. The report clearly puts Apple in a difficult position to deny a new, higher-capacity iPod is coming and harks back to a similar screwup by graphics company ATI in 1999, which took a costly toll on its relationship with Apple CEO Steve Jobs.

A story by IDG News Service reports that the deputy manager of Toshiba's Digital Media Network hard disk drive division technical department confirmed at a computer convention in Taiwan that the company plans to launch a 60GB version of its 1.8-inch drive in the coming months and that Apple has committed to buying the drive for use in one of its own products.
Deputy Manager Cindy Lee is reported to have said the drive will be in mass production in July or August. Although the story doesn't quote Lee directly, it leaves few details to the imagination that a new drive is coming soon and Apple will be using it in future iPods; Apple doesn't use Toshiba's miniature drives in anything but iPods.
Sources inside Apple confirmed late Wednesday that company executives are wondering, "what the hell happened? This is a major fuck up and you don't have to be a genius to figure out what is coming next from Apple," said one source close to the iPod maker. "Apple is trying to get answers from Toshiba, but it appears they are just as in the dark as to what happened. Apple is not happy."
As for Toshiba, the company reportedly is trying to do quick damage control.
"Somebody opened their big mouth and either it was taken out of context or was 'off-the-record' or this person really did just confirm it all," said a hard drive industry analyst familiar with how technology companies work business relationships. "There is no good way to handle this now. Toshiba screwed up and it could have major consequences, depending on how upset Steve Jobs is."
Another source close to Toshiba confirmed Wednesday the company has fielded calls and e-mail from Apple executives since early Wednesday morning trying to smooth over angry executives who saw the report.
Officially, Toshiba does not discuss new products until they are in full production. In addition, the company never discusses who its customers are.
If the news of Apple's use of the 60GB miniature drive is true and the time frame of July or August for full production of the Toshiba 60GB hard drive is correct, it is very apparent Apple is on the verge of announcing at least one new version of its iPod portable music player. At present, Apple's white version of the iPod has a maximum capacity of 40GB, using Toshiba's 1.8-inch drive.
Various Think Secret sources have reported in the past month that Apple will begin later this year to more aggressively update its iPod product line on a more regular basis. Some sources have mentioned September as an opportune time.
The Toshiba gaffe harkens back to a similar one by graphics chip maker ATI in July of 1999 when it accidentally sent out a press release confirming Apple would use its RAGE 4XL chip in a new iMac model and RAGE 128 PRO standard in two Power Mac models before Apple had its chance to announce the new desktop Macs.
As a result, Jobs reportedly was so upset by the press release screw-up that he removed all mention of ATI and their products from his keynote presentation the next day and scrapped a portion of his presentation where an ATI executive was to take the stage and perform a demonstration of the company's new RADEON graphics cards for the Mac. In addition, Jobs reportedly demanded that all ATI RADEON card options be removed from the company's online store. It was some time before ATI products returned as options on the Apple online store or in Apple products.
Less than 24 hours since the 'Toshiba blunder' occurred, it doesn't appear the hard drive report has scorched the relationship with Apple to the level of the ATI screw-up. But as one source put it, "This incident isn't over yet."

Last edited by curiousuburb : 2004-06-04 at 14:53. Reason: added credit and link to original story at ThinkSecret
Fro Productions(tm)
Join Date: May 2004
Location: London Town
2004-06-04, 13:48

AtAT mentioned this in yesterday's (3 June) posting, that's still up as I write this (first scene). Read, it. Some funny background stuff there...
Veteran Member
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Ottawa, ON
2004-06-04, 14:10

Why is Apple so concerned about maintaining secrecy in its future hardware plans?
Veteran Member
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Chicago
2004-06-04, 14:13

Originally Posted by Chinney
Why is Apple so concerned about maintaining secrecy in its future hardware plans?
So that MS has to wait till the product is out to copy off of it.
Senior Member
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Westminster, MD
Send a message via AIM to Crusader  
2004-06-04, 14:20

Yea, Apple despite what you might believe, this isn't gonna affect my iPod buying plan. I'm still getting one soon so...
Join Date: May 2004
Location: chicago
Send a message via AIM to SKMDC  
2004-06-04, 14:32

Originally Posted by Chinney
Why is Apple so concerned about maintaining secrecy in its future hardware plans?
i don't think knowledge of a 60gig impending would keep people from buying, unless they thought the 60 would be at the 40 price and a new price structure down the line.
then again the general public doesn't know this stuff, just geeks.

"What's a Canadian farm boy to do?"
feeling my oats
Join Date: May 2004
Location: there are nice people here...that makes me happy
Send a message via AIM to thegelding  
2004-06-04, 14:52

unless people think apple is making a 4th generation iPod with video capibilities and it gets the 60GB HD to handle that...that might get people to wait a bit...but then again, only the geeks would be doing that anyway


crazy is not a rare human condition

everything is food if you chew hard enough
Antimatter Man
Join Date: May 2004
Location: that interweb thing
2004-06-04, 14:56

edited initial post to add link to original story at ThinkSecret.

OT: hmmmm... these fora blend so nicely with the theme at ThinkSecret.
same gradients as our front page, similar colour schemes... quite complementary
9" monochrome
Join Date: May 2004
Location: 🇦🇺
2004-06-05, 10:55

Although inadvertently divulging another company's plans (indirectly) is a coporate no-no, it doesn't really take Einstein to figure out that, yes, someday Apple will release a new iPod with a larger hard drive... that's just progress.

Having said this, nobody likes their "surprise announcements" to be spoiled - least of all Mr Jobs - as has been publicly documented (and highlighted) above!

All I want is a simple life
Veteran Member
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Pittsburgh
2004-06-05, 17:00

This type of story, while founded in a bit of truth, seems to be a bit out of touch.

It is perfectly normal for people to vent when something happens to a project that they've been working hard on. In this case, the rewarding surprise of bringing something to market was tainted. If my own experience at work is any indication of human nature, far lesser gaffs can produce short lived outbursts. This is absolutely normal even amongst groups with healthy cultures exhibiting desirable interpersonal interaction patterns.

Besides this, it really isn't even news. Did anyone doubt that apple would come out with a higher capacity iPod at some future, undisclosed date?

Funny, the shear existence of this story, let alone people's vehement reactions to it, is more noteworthy than the story's contents.
The Elder™
Join Date: May 2004
Location: The Rostra
2004-06-05, 17:33

I've gotta assume that Apple is more pissed about iPod leaks than Mac leaks. I was watching a show on Bravo and during their "CNBC Business Update" the second story was about how Apple was expected to intro a new 60GB model iPod soon. When was the last time a rumored iMac speed bump got so much mainstream press play?


¡Viva La Revolucion!
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Minnesota
2004-06-05, 17:49


Apple's going to eventually release an iPod with a 60 GB hard drive? I WOULD HAVE NEVER KNOWN IF NOT FOR TOSHIBA!1!!1!11ONE~~1`1!

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