My take on Apple's iPod mini
There seems to be a near consensus panning of Apple's iPod mini. And I disagree. I posted the following as a comment in one of my own posts from a couple of days ago (and I want to repost it here so I can point to it in 6 months when I'm proven right): "Regarding the iPod-mini, your observation about the $50/11GB delta is being echoed across the web this morning but I'm not so sure. I have a 30GB iPod and a 45GB music collection so I have to make choices about what lives on the iPod at any given time. I think for a lot of people 4GB/1000 songs should do it, especially if the tools and interface (FireWire/USB 2) allow you to update quickly and easily. The major upsides to the mini are size and possibly battery life. Finally, while it may or may not "compete" with real iPods, it will surely kick the crap out of anything from the likes of Rio, Creative, et al. I've used this stuff for years (e.g. original Creative Jukebox) and it still amazes me just how bad the products (including software) from these companies can be and still make it to market." Sure there will be some cannibalization of iPod sales, but look down, not up. That is, for an extra $50 look at what you get with an iPod mini vs. the $200 competition. I see a bunch of 256MB flash players from the likes of Rio and Creative. I think there are reasons (size, battery, affordability for people at the margin) to buy an iPod mini over a normal iPod. I don't think there are any reasons to buy any $199 MP3 player over an iPod mini.
Jobs spoke of the 30% of the MP3 player market that is "high-end flash players." Apple will own this market in 6-12 months.
John Gruber over at Daring Fireball seems to share my take on this.