SPECULATION: 7 Predictions for WWDC 2007

wwdc-top-secret.pngBack in Feb. I wrote a predictions article for WWDC 2007. I thought it might be funny to write a predictions article that early. After several months, however, I still think most of what I wrote will happen. You can read that early predictions article right here.

Now, with WWDC just around the corner, I’m going to take another stab at it and see how close I can get.

Now, just for reference, I made 7 predictions about Macworld 2007, and here’s how they turned out.

  • iTV (AppleTV) fully unveiled and available for purchase – Right (you could pre-order it)
  • iLife/iWork 07 @Macworld- Wrong
  • Leopard features unveiled – Wrong
  • iTunes 7.5 released – Wrong
  • No “true” Video iPod – Right (some might argue that the iPhone is “true” video iPod…but I disagree)
  • iPod Market Dominance – Right
  • iPhone Revealed – Right

So I got 4 right and 3 wrong. Not the best stats, but I can live with it. Hopefully I’ll do better this time…

1 – Multi-Touch in Leopard – Leopard is going to be the main focus of WWDC this year,and I think one of the big surprises left in Leopard is the inclusion of the iPhone’s Multi-touch navigation. Now, I’m not saying that Apple is going to abandon the mouse at WWDC. Far from it, but I think Multi-touch will be included in the OS, and there will be some products there that support it.

2 – New GUI for OS X – We all know that the Aqua interface, while still quite nice, is getting a little long in the tooth. At WWDC expect the next generation GUI to be another secret of Leopard.

3 – New iLife w/iTunes HD – The new versions of iLife will be revealed with Leopard – possibly even as a part of Leopard itself, and will all feature HD support…including HD downloads from iTunes.

4 – Blu-Ray Support – Blu-Ray support and playback in Leopard, and Blu-Ray drive options on all higher end Macs.

5 – Leopard/iPhone integration – I don’t think we’ll be seeing too much about the iPhone at WWDC this year, but we will see how extensive the integration with Leopard is…and I expect it will be very much a part of Leopard. I don’t think it’s a co-incidence that WWDC is happening before the iPhone even comes out.

6 – New Mac Minis and Macbook Pros – With the recent update of the Macbooks, the Macbook Pros are in desperate need of CPU upgrade, and the Mac Minis are due as well. I expect to see new version of both products at WWDC if not before…

One More Thing…

7 – Ultra Portable iMac w/Multi touch screen – I don’t believe we’ll ever see an Apple tablet (made by Apple at least) but I think the time is right for a device like that to premiere. The UPiMac wouldn’t be much different than the current iMac…just thinner, lighter, and attached to a removable dock when on the desktop…but it would be portable for taking around the house to use where ever you wanted – freeing you from the confines of the desk, and giving you the freedom to use Multi-touch for a completely new UMPC experience.

If you took the time to read the Feb. article you’ll notice it’s not much different. I still feel like everything written here is a strong possibility, and I can’t wait for the Keynote (which will be providing live coverage of) to find out how close I am…

Now, I’ll bet a few of you have Predictions and speculation of your own…feel free to leave comments or links to your own Predictions articles in the comments below.

Comments

  1. I also want an umpc ops ummac,

    in my memory I think that apple was born for the niche market, so umpc is good … for the apple computer… but im not sure for the new globalized apple!

    Steve!

    please give us an umpc!

  2. I ordered a MacBook Pro the day they were announced. The same would happen again if Apple announced an Ultra Portable with iPhone-like features – “iMac Nano” anyone? I have no interest in an iPhone, but I really do want to carry my Mac with me a lot of the time. A small Mac with a solid state drive and a multitouch display and iWork ’07 would be wonderful.

    I have no problem carrying two devices if I need to – a mobile phone and a iMac Nano would make sense on some occasions, while a mobile phone on its own would make sense for the times when I don’t need my Mac with me. A way to sync my big Mac and my baby Mac would be good too – without .Mac

    (Why don’t I want an iPhone? I don’t own an iPod, so I don’t music built into a phone or an other media for that matter. I do want a phone to be small, have a long battery life and can be operated with one hand!)

    Mark

  3. One thing I’m nervous about with this year’s WWDC is the focus.

    Frankly, there had better not be much about the iPhone at WWDC. I’m paying good money to attend a Developer Conference–I’m not spending good money so Apple can try to convince me to buy an iPhone. So unless I can develop software for it, they can keep it out of WWDC.

    They did this a few years back with Airport Express and the BMW deal. Developers couldn’t do anything with either and more than a few people were pissed off.

    So, let’s start with the predictions:

    Multitouch in Leopard — I don’t see how this will make a difference for developers in Leopard. While I could see Apple announcing support, for most developers it’s a “So what?” kind of arrangement. Why does multitouch matter to an application developer? I get a click–whether it comes from a mouse, a trackpad, or somebody touching something on the screen–and I do something with it. And Apple would not want developers coming up with their own multi-touch actions: In some applications, you X something out to delete it, in another application you use a squiggly mark (whatever the Newton used to delete text), in another you just run your hand over it?

    New GUI — Perhaps.

    iLife/iTunes HD — Once again, I doubt it. It’s a Developers Conference. Apple can show off the new iLife when it ships with Leopard.

    Blu-Ray Support — I could see this as a BTO option in Mac Pros. Developers would be interested in this.

    Leopard/iPhone — I could see this possibly as a way of showing off improvements to Sync Services.

    Mac mini/MacBook Pro updates — MacBook Pro? Only if Apple is using Santa Rosa chipsets. Mac mini? Maybe, but they won’t spend much time on it.

    Ultra-Portable Mac — Hmm…Well, first problem is that, according to you, you won’t see multi-touch until Leopard and that means October. So this would mean showing off the Ultra-Portable Mac that you won’t be able to buy until October. So it’s a maybe at best. If it exists, I could see Apple showing it off with the launch of Leopard.

  4. I don’t think multi-touch is going to take off for at least another year or so. I think any iLife/iTunes updates will be saved for Leopards release, as Peter stated. If this turns into another iPhone event, I’ll be upset and I’m not a developer.

    Just my 2 cents.

  5. Grantze says:

    Sorry for nitpicking, but there is no such word as unveal. You should have used reveal or unveil, but you should not use a combination of the two.

  6. “7 – Ultra Portable iMac w/Multi touch screen – I don’t believe we’ll ever see an Apple tablet (made by Apple at least) but I think the time is right for a device like that to premiere. The UPiMac wouldn’t be much different than the current iMac…just thinner, lighter, and attached to a removable dock when on the desktop…but it would be portable for taking around the house to use where ever you wanted – freeing you from the confines of the desk, and giving you the freedom to use Multi-touch for a completely new UMPC experience.”

    Do you seriously think people are going to be cradling 20″ and 24″ screens in their arms; using multi-touch?

  7. A brand new iSight-nano generation ???

    Just kidding.

  8. Mr. Gouda says:

    I can see them releasing an ultra portable macBook pro, but without multi-touch. I’m not sure what all the fuss is about those tiny laptops though. My old eyes hate straining to view such tiny displays. I personally am in the camp of “bigger is better”. With the death of the 17″ iMac, I predict a 30″ iMac to be unveiled.

  9. Mr. Reeee says:

    I’d hate to see the iMac 17″ disappear. Cut at least $200 off the price and sell it as an entry level Mac with or without a SuperDrive. They’ll sell to the “Macs-are-too-expensive-but-I-really-want-one” crowd.

    A MacBook Pro update is overdue (I need to replace my PowerBook!) as is a serious Mac mini update. I’d still like to see a Half-Mac Pro in a pizza box form factor. Y’know, something with some real GUTS that gives me monitor choice and room for my legs under my desk! The Mac mini should be in the same box as TV!

    Agreed about iLife and Leopard.

  10. Apple Tablet PC? That will be so cool and finally it’s about time Apple come out with it.

  11. You predicted iPod dominance… wow… get this guy a medal.

    And yes, the iPhone is the widescreen iPod. Go on and criticize Apple for skipping a few models to get to the “worlds most amazing device.” You want less features. Yay.

  12. BoulderMac says:

    Dont you mean Ultra Portable Macbook? Not Ultra Portable iMac? Who would want a Ultra Portable Imac with no battery?

  13. Michael says:

    @mike

    yeah, yeah…it couldn’t have been more obvious, I know. The only reason it was mentioned is because at the time it was written there was this huge flame war back and forth about how the Zune was going to cut into iPod marketshare.

    @BoulderMac

    No, I don’t mean an Ultra Portable Macbook. I mean an iMac…and yes, I would expect it to have a battery otherwise it wouldn’t be ultra portable. I wouldn’t expect it to be called a MacBOOK, because I don’t expect it to be a notebook. I expect it to be an Ultra Portable.

  14. A loud “amen!” to Grantze. By employing your non-word “unveal” (and doing so repeatedly), you made it much more difficult to be impressed with the assertions of your piece.

    Seriously, find a spell checker. They are free, and easy to find, making glaring errors like yours really inexcusable.

  15. How about the arrival of TV Shows and/or movie downloads in European iTunes Stores?

  16. Michael says:

    @ Jimbo

    You’re a classy guy. Glad you stopped by.

    For some reason, the “non-word” unvealed doesn’t come up as an error on my spellchecker. I don’t know why. I fixed it for you, though.

  17. Bradf0rd says:

    I can’t see any of this happening other than an ultra portable and mac mini/Macbook Pro update (b/c this will happen eventually). Leopard may *support* multitouch but I doubt it’ll be used in applications…

    I couldn’t imagine any of the macs being touch screen, or even wanting to touch the screen if it were… I mean, could you imagine a 30″ Cinema display(exaggerating the experience) w/ touch screen. You’d get a serious workout doing anything, unless it were tilted at such an angle that you’d have to be looking down at it.

    Oh, and also, iLife 07 and iTunes HD I can see, but having HD content available for Download is a little off… What’s the current resolution in iTunes? What? Nowhere near HD? Then how can you expect for them to all the sudden jump to HD? Also, about the HD iTunes store, How many Macs actually have HD displays? 3, theoretically.. 21″/30″ Cinema displays, and then the iTV’s TV… if it’s HD.

  18. I highly doubt we’ll see it. But, my wishlist for the Mini would be that they make 1 GB standard, at least. A lot of PC manufacturers have done this and I think it’s time Apple does it as well. I don’t think they would but I would really like to see an integrated graphics card and a standard SuperDrive in all of Apple’s computers. I think integrated graphics are a thing of the past and for crying out loud my iBook G3 has a CD/DVD combo drive, no CD burner, but still. I think it’s time to get a SuperDrive in everything.

  19. Michael says:

    @Bradf0rd

    I don’t think Multi-touch will be right for everything, but I do think for an Ultra Portable it will be ideal so that you can carry it around and use it without having to have a mouse or trackpad.

    HD content for iTunes is inevitable. It’s coming. Microsoft already has HD content, including movie rentals, on the Xbox360…and the AppleTV has always been billed as HD only. The current resolution in iTunes is “near DVD quality”, but an upgrade is desperately needed (as most anyone with an AppleTV will tell you).

  20. uMac !!!

    it is uMac !!!

    not umpcMac

    or m$Mac

    or ultraMac

    IT IS U-M-A-C!!!

    ktxby

  21. All I know is that I will be sorely disappointed if they don’t premier new multi-touch laptops and/or desktops. I see the iPhone as a prototype for this and would expect an apple tablet pc to be the closest thing you can get to a video iPod (maybe they’ll eventually do a 13-incher for under 1K). I just want one to take all my notes in, b/c I’m sick of paper and waste, which leads to wasted time. I think Stevo’s gonna help me with that.

    By, the way, just imagine Starcraft II with integrated controls…

  22. macbook pros in desperate need of processor upgrade?….

    yeah, my 2.33 Ghz core 2 duo is really behind the times.

    what the hell is this guy talking about? what on earth would the CPU be upgraded TO?

    oh and btw, appleinsider reported the death of the mac mini line today.

    all around insightful stuff here…

  23. [...]7 Predictions for WWDC 2007[...]

  24. Michael says:

    @ rob

    AppleInsider reports stuff ALL the time. Could it be true? Sure…does the fact that AppleInsider reported something make it true?

    Ah…no…

  25. I can’t help feeling that we may see a minitower, especially as some people are saying the Mac Mini is dead. I believe there’s a hell of a lot of people out there who would like to use their own monitor with a fairly low cost, decent machine.

  26. I’ll second the iTunes HD. Anyone who has really played with the AppleTV can tell you that the iTunes video management feels tacked on at best. a Minitower would be nice as well. I’m expecting some serious ATV feature updates as well, though WWDC might not be the nest place for that announcement (other than popular interest).

  27. Llewellyn says:

    I think the are going to drop the i in iMac. It will just be called a Mac.

  28. Actually I think ‘One More Thing’ may feature the iPhone. I think the iPhone will be able to make free VoIP calls over the AirPort Extreme and AT&T wifi hotspots. With a significant installed base of AirPort Extremes and thousands of AT&T hotspots around the US, I think this is a great niche Apple can exploit. I flesh it out further in my blog post here http://tinyurl.com/23pfpm

  29. Skeptical about the GUI redesign. If you look at the sneak peek on Apple’s Website, Aqua still looks like in Tiger. I disagree about Aqua getting old; I think the GUI has become well established and so familiar with people, they are not going to do a major overhaul. What is to be expected though are minor, basically cosmetic refinements (or rather, new styles – this has been the case with all previous major system releases); internal speed-ups probably making (more) use of the Core… technologies, and possibly a new set of GUI controls (maybe the ones being used in some of the iApps and pro apps) to extend the existing controls.

    About the new Mac mini: I’ve read another rumor just today that Apple will discontinue the Mac mini.

  30. Jim Fishg says:

    Fuck off, just wait and see you tool

  31. I wonder what the new GUI is going to be like? I read an article claiming that the new GUI will be much darker in color, looking like the translucent black effects palette in iPhoto. It also said the GUI is to be named “Illuminatus” or something along those lines. We’ll see.

  32. orbited says:

    Wouldn’t Blu-Ray playback support require the same types of DRM-limitations that Vista have been so criticized for having? Blu-Ray require HDCP to play HD-content, right? And if HDCP is not present, the quality will be purposely degraded?

    I don’t want OS X to be like Vista. Do you think Apple have the balls to refuse Blu-ray in the interest of its customers?

  33. Looking at the interface for the iPhone and predictions on a laptop make me wonder. Why not a desktop phone system with the same features.

    I think it would be great to have the transfer, conference and computer integration features as well as the named display of voicemail. It seems like this would be much easier to implement on a desk than on a mobile, yet we will see it there first.

    I have tried the various phone apps for the Mac but they don’t integrate with a digital phone system like many offices now have. (At least none I have found)

  34. Ruhayat says:

    Currently, I already have the best home Mac solution ever to be made available from Apple: a 12-inch Powerbook, with 1.33GHz PowerPC G4 processor, 60GB 7200-rpm drive and 1.25GB RAM.

    In my office it “docks” to a 22-inch widescreen LCD, Firewire external drives and USB hub with mouse, keyboard and A3-sized colour inkjet printer plugged in. At the end of the day I unplug everything, put the Powerbook to sleep and put it in my Crumpler bag. Should I decide to stop for dinner I can still use it to browse the Internet or send urgent e-mails to clients who need a file I’m working on.

    At home it “docks” to my 40-inch plasma TV, amplifier and the external USB drive where I keep all my ripped CDs and DVDs. Otherwise it “docks” into my home office setup with 19-inch widescreen LCD, colour laser printer and USB hub with all peripherals I need.

    The only thing that’s lacking for me are (1) a handy remote control (using my Sony Ericcson mobile isn’t quite the same), and (2) the ability to have 2GB RAM would be nice, mostly for work. Other than that, I’m perfectly happy.

  35. Thanks for sharing

  36. I’d prefer reading in my native language, because my knowledge of your languange is no so well. But it was interesting! Look for some my links:

Speak Your Mind

*