Yahoo Messenger: With iChat AV, you may not think this is a big deal. Yahoo Messenger for the Mac has fallen far behind it's PC counterpart. In order to use a feature that a friend of mine wanted to use called "photoshare", I had to launch Virtual PC and use the PC version of Yahoo IM because the Mac version didn't support it. I was amazed by this cool feature. I have to be honest with anyone who doesn't use Yahoo Messenger on the Mac ... if you've ever seen the PC version, you don't know what you're missing. For years before iChat existed, even in OS 9, I was enjoying webcam chat (albeit jerky) with the Mac version of Yahoo Messenger. Yahoo IM is also more feature rich and seems more "social networking-like". Yahoo's broader "free services" community lends to a more MySpace feel. Now that Yahoo messenger has been opened up ... maybe good things are ahead ... including iChatAV integration. I just hope if Apple integrates it that they also open up the compatibility for different webcams. (As Yahoo IM has now.)
[UPDATE] Yahoo releases new Yahoo IM, hints at possible iChat integration
The Mighty Mouse (wireless): I made the case for this here, but to sum up ... the biggest reason is for a mass distributed wireless right hand / left hand interchangeable wireless mouse. A mouse that you don't have to worry about which side of your laptop is free to plug it in, or to have some (two port hogging) dongle protruding out of a USB slot. Bluetooth mice save ports, save hassle, and you don't have to worry about "port strain". * port strain is accidentally yanking on a corded peripheral or a cable and causing damage to an i/o port.
CAD Software I would imagine that either A) Apple is developing some sort of in house CAD software based on Pixar Renderman or B) Is lending a helping hand to someone to develop CAD software for the Mac. There are solutions now, but none with true prestige such as the industry standard AutoDesk's AutoCad. Google's release of SketchUp for Mac OSX was a huge step in the right direction. It's embarrassing that design professionals have no real means of 3D design and prototype fabrication for Macs. Again, there are programs out there ... just not an industry leader.
The Apple iPhone: It's coming. It has to. Apple is truly starting to get real competition coming from cellphones for the iPod. The cellphone industry is in the exact same place as the MP3 industry was when Apple entered the MP3 player market ... crowded and about to be moreso ... but no one was stepping up to the plate with a really good solution that was simple and (bigger than you think) was compatible with Macs. The only downside I see to an iPhone is that (unlike the MP3 player market) Apple will have to choose a carrier and thereby not be able to tap in to a full market. But here's the interesting part. You have to know that cell carriers see the potential that an iPhone would have on subscriber base. Geeks by the droves (droves = 100's of thousands) would switch to the carrier that Apple chooses to distribute the iPhone. I would imagine one or two carriers has already given Apple R&D money to gain exclusivity and been planning for the massive influx of subscribers for months now. My bets are on Cingular ... because of the "easy ownership" of phones. A Cingular GSM (or SIM chip) phone is not tied to a network like a Verizon or Sprint phone is. Technically, a Sprint or Verizon phone never belongs to the owner because it requires interaction with a Verizon/Sprint store to reprogram it. Whereas for Cingular, SunCom, and T-Mobile all one has to do is put their SIM card (a small ID and memory chip) into any compatible phone. Apple has also worked with Cingular in the past ... I suspect they will do so again. Then again ... Apple may choose a new route startup cell companies are taking ... becoming an MVNO (Mobile Virtual Network Operator). This entails Apple actually setting up their own service and just leasing air time from a larger carrier. This route is quite possible with the penetration of Apple Stores across the country at this point. MVNO seems just as likely seeing as how Apple likes to control "the whole widget" as Steve Jobs has said in the past.
The best thing that Apple will bring to the table for a cellphone will be a high quality digital camera ... finally re-entering the digital camera market and doing a cellphone/digital camera right without compromise. 4 megapixels instead of 1.3 or 2 that is common on phones now. I don't want Apple to rush it, but it seems like they are being overly cautious of timing this announcement. An Apple iPhone will be a hit on so many levels ... finally appeasing Newton fans, giving Apple users a quality digital camera, and letting the world see Apple can do things right ... a fourth time. (Mac OS, iMac, iPod, iPhone)
And finally ... I'm going to cop out on the last of the five and see what you have to say. Remember ... this isn't what YOU want but you think ALL, or at least a high percentage of Mac users, need or would benefit from. Tell me what you think in the comments.
* Apparently a draft version of this story originally posted ... it has since been corrected.