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Tomorrow, a number of Apple executives will be taking the stage yet again – for the second time in less than two months. While they’re up there, it is rumored that they will announce a number of new products.
But what new products have been rumored? And what ones will actually show up on stage, alongside CEO Tim Cook and his Apple colleagues? Keep reading this edition of Tech Talk to find out what has been rumored to come out of Apple’s labs tomorrow – and what I think actually will make it out.
Let’s get the big – er, little – rumor out of the way first. According to an insane amount of “inside sources” and reports, Apple’s headlining announcement tomorrow will be about its iPad mini. Pegged to be a smaller iPad, the new mini’s screen is supposed to measure in at 7.85-inches; in other words, it supposed to be two inches smaller than the current new iPad.
To drive that 7.85-inch display – whose resolution is rumored to be 1024 x 768 – the iPad mini will be outfitted with the iPad 2’s internals. As a refresher, that’s an Apple A5 processor and 512MB of RAM. Of course, if the resolution turns out to be higher than what is predicted, then so will the specs: those internals drive that display in the iPad 2 already, and they would need to be bumped up in order to drive a higher resolution.
Naturally, there’s also the price rumor. Yesterday, 9to5Mac found a screenshot of alleged prices for the iPad mini. According to this leaked information, the iPad mini will start at $329, and go up to $659. Nobody knows what capacities will be offered at what price points, but what is known that the miniature iPad will indeed offer cellular capabilities – likely LTE.
At this point, that’s all we can safely say might happen. I think it’s fairly obvious at this point that the iPad mini will be introduced tomorrow and put up for preorders this Friday – Windows 8 day – with a final release on November 2nd (which has been rumored more than once).
13-inch Retina MacBook Pro
Aside from the iPad mini, Apple is also rumored to introduce a 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro. As you probably already know, Apple introduced its 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro this summer at its annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC). It’s thinner and lighter than any other 15-inch Mac ever made, but it’s not for everyone – especially those who want a smaller screen for convenience and portability.
It’s not the star of tomorrow’s show, but there has been a decent amount of information leaked out about it, regardless. For starters, we are fairly certain of some of the internals: a dual-core i7 clocked at 2.9GHz, a screen resolution of 2560 x 1600, and flash memory are almost sure to be put inside the new laptop.
The 15-inch model starts at $2,199, which is $400 more than the more-traditional 15-inch model’s starting price. $400 more than the current 13-inch model is $1,599, which is only $100 less than the rumored $1,699 price. I bet that, if this new laptop is announced tomorrow, it’ll start in the range of $1,599 and $1,699.
I’ve got mixed feelings about this. Yes, the Retina lineup of MacBook Pros desperately needs a smaller (read: cheaper) edition, but Intel’s new Haswell chips are coming out in a few months. I feel that Apple would wait until then to introduce a brand-new model of Mac, but Ivy Bridge chips do still have a bit of life in them.
I guess we’ll find out tomorrow.
Updated new iPad
At the moment, the current new iPad is somewhat out of date: it still uses Apple’s older 30-pin connector, even after Apple introduced the iPhone 5 with the new Lightning connector. As such, some sites have claimed that Apple will slightly refresh the new iPad with the new connector, as well as a better battery and a few miscellaneous updates.
Unfortunately, I have a feeling that this will happen. Apple has no issue slightly updating its products or disrupting the update cycle at a weird time, so I suppose we’ll see a refreshed new iPad tomorrow. It’ll naturally be the same price as the current model, with all the same capacity, carrier, and color options, too.
At its September iPhone 5 event, Apple also previewed the next version of iTunes, iTunes 11. Apple says that 11 is “Coming in October,” and considering that October is nearly over – and that tomorrow is an Apple event – I can’t see why Apple wouldn’t release it tomorrow.
And – that’s it. That’s all that has been rumored (as far as Pocketables is concerned) and that’s all that will likely be announced tomorrow.
Since this is a Tech Talk post, be sure to post your predictions, questions, and comments in the comments section below![Marco Arment | Daring Fireball | 9to5Mac | Apple MacBook Pro | Tom’s Hardware | Apple iTunes]