After Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference in June, with no product announcements, everyone’s waiting with increasing impatience for new products from Apple. Probably iPhone 7, probably MacBook Pro, which hasn’t had a real refresh for four years. Possibly Watch 2, possibly … it gets vaguer after here. The Mac Pro could do with some love too, but Apple’s unlikely to release too many things at once. I mean, it’s possible, as Apple has the resources to, crikey, build a station on the moon if it really wants to.
But that’s one thing I don’t expect to be announced.
On the boring front, iOS 10 and macOS Sierra are on the way. I’ve seen the betas of these and they offer improvements and refinements, but hardly great leaps. I mean, Siri on Mac? I don’t use Siri on iDevice. I’m sure some people do, but who are they? To me it’s a brilliant gimmick. I only ever use it when I show people. They say ‘Wow!’ too, but I really doubt they go away and use it.
iPhone 7 — The rumours about this have been all over the place. Even the leaked pictures of possible cases vary widely. You have to wonder if Apple has been adding to the confusion here. But almost certainly, the camera will be better. I say this as the camera has been improved in pretty much every prime release of iPhone, and even between some prime and ‘s’ version iPhones, this has happened.
Maybe it will get Pencil support, as why not? However, for me, the whole point of computers and devices is so I wouldn’t have to use a pen or pencil, partly because I can’t draw and partly because my handwriting is so awful, even I can’t read it. But that’s just me: plenty would find that useful, and iPad Pro certainly supports it well. But as other commentators have pointed out, next year is the 10th anniversary of iPhone, and that’s when a truly groundbreaking new iPhone could be expected, rather than this year.
iOS 10 gets rid of the swipe to unlock gesture (boy, is it hard to retrain your fingers here!). Unlocking now is a second press of the Home button. These will therefore wear out quicker, so they need some engineering anyway. Perhaps that’s why there are rumours of haptic feedback, as in the trackpad of the MacBook. Apple’s in that realm already, and is sure to expand that into other Macs, so why not?
Watch 2 — The limitations of the current, initial Apple Watch are: dependency on your iPhone to do the real processing, and general slowness and lag. It seems obvious a new version would improve on these two points as Apple’s engineers get better at smaller/faster, which has always been their forté. The promised new watchOS will place more demands on the hardware, so it will have to be better. How much better? We can’t know yet. But to me, the Watch isn’t truly useful yet, so I don’t have one.
Speculation elsewhere talks about GPS radio and a built-in barometer, but I don’t know. In my experience, these ‘well-connected analysts’ are living in the same informational vacuums that we all exist in, when it comes to Apple, despite their protestations to the contrary. But I guess we’ll see.
MacBook Pro — As I’ve said before, it’s likely a new MacBook Pro will have some of the features debuted in the MacBook: a slimmer design partly thanks to a new screen hinge, a bigger high-tech trackpad, but hopefully a decent array of ports, or pro users simply won’t buy them. Along with this, better battery tech, a faster latest-gem Intel CPU, and hopefully excellent graphics cards.
And in future? Orange Peel Investment’s Scott Tzu believes in a seismic sentiment change regarding the upcoming iPhone 7. He thinks the hype surrounding the iPhone 8 will be ‘unbearable’, so Apple could “very well be sitting at all-time highs just 12 short months from now.”
Meanwhile, hundreds of others continue predicting Apple’s imminent demise.
Why doesn’t this matter? They always have been.