Like the analysts, Macworld Online readers are placing their bets on what Apple plans to reveal during tonight's Apple briefing.

Reader thinking reflects the general consensus, favouring the debut of a new iPod video (24 per cent of the vote, 332 readers) and an online movie store (24 per cent of the vote, 338 readers). A total of 1,410 readers voted in the poll.

No one expects a new iPod shuffle, few (31 readers, 2 per cent) predict new LCD monitors with built-in iSight cameras, and slightly more readers (4 per cent, 54 folk) think Apple will reveal a new company CEO.

Other results (as of 1.30pm September 12) include:

- New MacBook Pro, 7 per cent, 92 votes;
- "Something else", 10 per cent, 135 votes;
- All new iPod nano, 10 per cent, 140 votes;
- iPod phone, 17 per cent, 241 votes.

"Seems pretty clear that an iPod will be in the front line to ensure Santa gets his stock in early. However, what I want to see is the much rumoured home media device," wrote one reader.

Another offered similar reflections: "A movie distribution service seems highly likely, but that makes me wonder how we might watch those movies in our homes," they wrote, adding their observation that a bridge to take such content to a TV remains the missing step in the digital home.

"If you think of iPods as a portable appliance that plays music, then what I'm expecting from Apple is a fixed appliance that lives within your home and plays A/V content either to Macs or to existing TV screens," another observes.

Others speculate on the Apple iPod mobile phone: "I'm seeing more and more people ditching iPods in favour of phones like the Sony Ericsson Walkmans and K800s," one reader observes.

"As discussed before the key barrier at the moment is striking a deal with a mobile network to make iTunes downloads affordable over GSM/UMTS. Plus there's the minor issue of the revenue split. Historically Apple have had the lion's share of this but for it to work they will have to give some of this to the mobile operators," they add.