With WWDC just two days away, you could be forgiven for thinking the end of the world was nigh considering the non-stop coverage throughout the tech world. Despite no promise of an iPad or iPhone – the two main instigators of rampant Cupertino commentary, there’s still plenty to look forward to, and with so much having been mentioned over the past few days/weeks/months, we take a more classified look at what we’re expecting to see.
Both the 11 and 13-inch iterations of the fruit company’s landmark notebook are due a refresh, and along with a minor bump in specs, it looks set to include the beautifully-crisp Retina display we’ve grown to know and love with the iPhone 4/4s, and of course, the new iPad. Expect to see Thunderbolt and USB 3.0 connectivity, and although some reports suggest a thinner form factor, we don’t tend to subscribe to that notion, mainly because if it did, there’d be little or nothing left.
The 15-inch MacBook Pro will also be blessed with a Retina display, and will be significantly faster thanks to the Ivy Bridge processor provided – belatedly – by Intel. It very much appears as though it’ll be bereft of an optical drive, and the space saved will allow the notebook to be significantly thinner.
Apple’s flagship desktop offering completes the Retina trio, and given the larger displays available when compared with the MacBook range, it will undoubtedly make for a wonderful spectacle. As with the portable Macs, it will also see a modest power boost, and although it’s becoming somewhat forgotten as consumers go all hazy-eyed over the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro, it will, by no means, forfeit its righteous chunk of attention when WWDC calls its name.
The Mac Pro is mostly targeted by the specialist market, and the resident powerhouse will simply become even more powerful. Considering it’ll be the first Mac Pro refresh since 2008, it will naturally bring the most damning changes, and although many reckoned the Mac Pro ship to be sinking, Apple could revitalize its professionally-orientated computer with up to 16 cores, as well Radeon HD 7900 series graphics. And you thought the top-end MacBook Pro was powerful.
Unless you’ve been hiding away in the cave, you will have learned that iOS 6 is definitely going to be unveiled on Monday. Having waited so long for iOS 5 to rear its head – some 17 months after the release of iOS 4 – it almost feels as though the fifth iteration hasn’t been given enough of a shelf-life. Still, we’re certainly not complaining, and with so many great features to look forward to, including Siri for iPad and a Siri API allowing developers to integrate the voice technology into third-party apps, it will – barring any major Antennagate-esque fiascos – go down a treat among consumers.
New iOS Maps App
Along with the unleashing of Siri, Facebook integration, Baidu Search replacing Google Search within the Chinese market, and a few less significant changes in iOS 6, we’re anticipating Apple to dish a double blow to Google by ditching the long-serving Google Maps with its own offering. As well as a completely re-jigged UI (Apple wouldn’t want to be caught copying Google, after all), there will be an awe-inspiring 3D mode, made possible by the Cupertino company’s acquisition of C3 Technologies.
The forthcoming version of OS X sees Apple’s desktop ethos meet the innovations of iOS, and although we’ve already seen plenty thanks to the initial announcement back in February, Tim Cook’s company will give developers and consumers a much more in-depth insight on the final iteration, which should be releasing later this summer.
Apple has a well-documented list of web ventures, but its iCloud service has gotten off to a strong start. There are plenty of rumors regarding what the fruit company may do to improve the service, and the most likely at this point is to re-fashion Photo Stream to include some kind of social element. Despite image storing / sharing mediums having been available for a number of years, Instagram seems to have sprung many a company into grabbing a slice of the image-sharing pie; and wherever there’s a pie, Apples are usually involved.