The iPhone 7 is out. But it is very likely that many of you are still waiting for your shipment to arrive. Therefore, it seems a little strange to already be looking beyond the latest and greatest to see what's around the corner.
But news waits for no one. And being the gadgeteers we know you are, it would be a disservice to not share what we know, and think we know about the Apple products and initiatives just over the horizon.
So even though you have just wrapped your new iPhone in the latest BodyGuardz protective shield, it is time to start thinking about the next iDevice and the tempered glass protector that will accompany it. But before getting to that, there is a lot more going on in Cupertino. Here is a quick peek into what we saw after stirring the tea leaves:
MacBook Pro, and Pretty Much Every Other MacThis Buyer's Guide from Mac Rumors tells you everything you need to know in big red letters about purchasing a Mac right now: Don't do it! Besides the 12" MacBook, every product in the line is either past due for a refresh, or so embarrassingly past due, one wonders if Apple has forgotten about them.
While all of the Macs need a refresh, the one most expected to get one any day now is the MacBook Pro. With an average refresh time of 268 days, it has been 497 days at the time of this writing.
We are expecting a lot more than a minor internals refresh. The headliner will be an OLED strip just above the keyboard dubbed the Touch Bar. It is expected to represent function keys that can change depending on the app. Some functions like volume and screen brightness might be controlled via gestures.
Though there has been no official word from Apple, an October event for Macs and iPods is not unprecedented. When we get the official scoop, you will be the first to know.
iPads ProThere are two iPads Pro (sorry Phil): the 9.7" and 12.9" models. The smaller of the two just came out this spring with features such as the True Tone display, expected to be on the next release of the larger model.
Moreover, a brand new 10.5" model is expected to make its debut in 2017. It is reasonable to expect the A10X running at a process of 10nm. The A10 in the iPhone 7 is a beast. Even more, power seems ridiculous. But it's coming with or without a purpose.
Do I Hear an Echo?Some fans of the Amazon Echo seem to be even more excited about the prospect of Apple making one of their own. And if Bloomberg is to be believed, Apple is doing just that. According to unnamed sources, the project is into the prototyping stage.
This product may be a speaker, or a smart home hub, or both. There has also been some speculation that it may be combined with a new router. The earliest speculation was that it would be a feature of the new Apple TV.
Apple makes a router that hasn't been updated in ages, and an Apple TV in need of obvious features like 4K playback. There is an excellent chance we will see this echo competitor soon, in whatever form it takes.
iPhone: The Next GenerationThe one thing we can say for certain is that there will be a new iPhone in 2017, probably released in the Fall. I have little confidence it will be called the iPhone 7s. This is the 10th anniversary iPhone. Apple could drop the I branding altogether. Or they may just call it something like the iPhone 10th anniversary edition.
The headliner is expected to be the new OLED or AMOLED display. It is likely Apple will find a new way to present this tech rather than just buying off-the-shelf tech from two years ago.
The display will have to be spectacular. After all, Samsung might have bendable, foldable display tech by then. Samsung will be pushing hard to compete after the Galaxy Nuke (er, Note) 7 disaster. One thing is for certain: Apple will also be pulling out all the stops.
Don't worry. This won't be the last time we stir the tea leaves. But what we see now through a glass darkly gives us cause for excitement.