Tag - Rumors
As much as we lampoon some of the sillier rumors in this space, we do like taking a peek into the crystal ball of what might happen and picking out our favorites to bet on. As we all know, some of them come true, some of them never do, some may come true someday -- so they're like prayers, in a way -- and there is some fun in handicapping the likelihood of which camp a given rumor will fall. In recent years, the dead zone between the end of WWDC and the announcement of the new hotness(es) in the fall there comes a second "silly season" where analysts, pundits, and other assorted otherwise-unemployable types put out their guesses. This year, it is particularly contradictory.
So it's episode 44 and we're calling it by the now obscure journalism term for the end of a piece – 30 – but it's about Error 53 and it's about 7.1mm thin. We don't think we can cram any more numbers in this, but that's never stopped us trying.
We spend a fair amount of time in this space belittling the predictions and pontifications of pundits around here (one in particular -- though we would like to stress that it is the sites that unfairly balloon his above-average-but-imperfect record into gospel-like status that we actually don't care for, not the man himself). We love deconstructing rumors (where needed), rooting out the source, watching it evolve and refine (or be walked back and forgotten), and let's not forget: even if it's clearly nonsense, rumors can be fun and entertaining. We feed on them.
Yesterday, we made the rookie mistake of saying that our previous Rumor Roundup column would likely be the last before Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference, which kicks off Monday. We're flattered that the rumor mill read that and said to itself "challenge accepted," but as a result here we are again with further revelations, real or imagined, of what is to come. Today, the rumors get a bit wilder -- including the notion of iMessage coming to Android, blue replacing "space gray" as a color option, and some drool-worth CGI mock-ups of what an OLED "function bar" might look like on a new MacBook Pro.
Rumors, while they are often at least somewhat inaccurate, very spoiler-y, and occasionally just not true at all (still no Apple Watch 2 ...), are born of a boundless optimism for the future and the thrill of mystery -- qualities that you just can't hate. This week, Rumor Roundup tries not to rain on the parade of the latest claims, reports, and speculation regarding a leaked part for next fall's iPhone 7, the possibility of refreshes in the MacBook family lineup, and at least one analyst who -- after finally giving up his dream of an Apple HDTV -- has now reshaped that dream to look like a car.
This week's Rumor Roundup includes a quick lesson on what a "confirmation" of the truth of a given rumor entails, as much to educate our readers on how to discern logical flaws as to instruct our competitors. This time, we have a likely -- albeit accidental -- confirmation that forthcoming iPads will support the Apple Pencil drawing stylus, and we have "confirmation" that the iPhone SE and iPhone 7 will look exactly as rumors suggest, because prototype cases made based on possibly-fake "specs" fit expectations. See how that works?
If a new schematic of the "iPhone 7" turns out to be true, iPhone buyers expected the traditional redesign of the device may be in for some disappointment. New "leaked" drawings that purport to show the chassis casing the next iPhone (at least the 4.7-inch version of it, presumably to be called the "iPhone 7") show a design nearly identical to the existing iPhone 6s, with only minor changes: very slightly thinner (previous rumors have suggested just one millimeter thinner), less-visible antenna lines, and what looks like a single (but slightly larger) opening for the camera.
We really wanted to talk about something other than the Apple-FBI dust-up this week, and so we tried our best -- but when the story takes a turn for the bizarre and dismaying, you have to face up to it at some point. First, however, Editor Charles and Managing Editor Mike calm themselves by chatting about the latest twists and turns in the world of Apple rumors, Mike's new Apple Watch and his initial impressions, the expansion of the Amazon Echo line with new accessories, and then penultimately all the new developments in the Apple-FBI dispute, before finishing off with William and his App of the Week.
Another week goes by, and rumors evolve, like clouds parting to hopefully reveal a clear day. We've been following the evolution of the rumors in order to show how scraps of information are gathered (and many discarded) in order to eventually piece together what may be enough credible information to form a viable look into what is likely to happen with Apple's future plans. Many of the original rumors and speculation never pan out, but as we get closer to an alleged mid-March Apple event, those clouds are starting to form identifiable shapes.
As you may have seen from our Rumor Roundups, there has been a lot of talk lately about an alleged new iPhone model that is thought might launch this spring. As is the case with rumors not based on hard evidence, the supposed specs of the device change nearly hourly, and resemble more closely someone's wish list than a practical or sensible device at times. Two things have stayed constant in the various versions of the rumor, however: a four-inch display, and that it is based on the idea of a revamp of the iPhone 5s.
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Cirrus creates Lightning-headphone dev kit
Apple supplier Cirrus Logic has introduced a MFi-compliant new development kit for companies interested in using Cirrus' chips to create Lightning-based headphones, which -- regardless of whether rumors about Apple dropping the analog headphone jack in its iPhone this fall -- can offer advantages to music-loving iOS device users. The kit mentions some of the advantages of an all-digital headset or headphone connector, including higher-bitrate support, a more customizable experience, and support for power and data transfer into headphone hardware. Several companies already make Lightning headphones, and Apple has supported the concept since June 2014. http://bit.ly/29giiZj
Apple Store app offers Procreate Pocket
The Apple Store app for iPhone, which periodically rewards users with free app gifts, is now offering the iPhone "Pocket" version of drawing app Procreate for those who have the free Apple Store app until July 28. Users who have redeemed the offer by navigating to the "Stores" tab of the app and swiping past the "iPhone Upgrade Program" banner to the "Procreate" banner have noted that only the limited Pocket (iPhone) version of the app is available free, even if the Apple Store app is installed and the offer redeemed on an iPad. The Pocket version currently sells for $3 on the iOS App Store. [32.4MB]
Porsche adds CarPlay to 2017 Panamera
Porsche has added a fifth model of vehicle to its CarPlay-supported lineup, announcing that the 2017 Panamera -- which will arrive in the US in January -- will include Apple's infotainment technology, and be seen on a giant 12.3-inch touchscreen as part of an all-new Porsche Communication Management system. The luxury sedan starts at $99,900 for the 4S model, and scales up to the Panamera Turbo, which sells for $146,900. Other vehicles that currently support CarPlay include the 2016 911 and the 2017 models of Macan, 718 Boxster, and 718 Cayman. The company did not mention support for Google's corresponding Android Auto in its announcement. http://bit.ly/295ZQ94
Apple employees testing wheelchair features
New features included in the forthcoming watchOS 3 are being tested by Apple retail store employees, including a new activity-tracking feature that has been designed with wheelchair users in mind. The move is slightly unusual in that, while retail employees have previously been used to test pre-release versions of OS X and iOS, this marks the first time they've been included in the otherwise developer-only watchOS betas. The company is said to have gone to great lengths to modify the activity tracker for wheelchair users, including changing the "time to stand" notification to "time to roll" and including two wheelchair-centric workout apps. http://bit.ly/2955JDa
SanDisk reveals two 256GB microSDXC cards
SanDisk has introduced two 256GB microSDXC cards. Arriving in August for $150, the Ultra microSDXC UHS-I Premium Edition card offers transfer speeds of up to 95MB/s for reading data. The Extreme microSDXC UHS-I card can read at a fast 100MB/s and write at up to 90MB/s, and will be shipping sometime in the fourth quarter for $200. http://bit.ly/294Q1If
Apple's third-quarter results due July 26
Apple has advised it will be issuing its third-quarter results on July 26, with a conference call to answer investor and analyst queries about the earnings set to take place later that day. The stream of the call will go live at 2pm PT (5pm ET) via Apple's investor site, with the results themselves expected to be released roughly 30 minutes before the call commences. Apple's guidance for the quarter put revenue at between $41 billion and $43 billion. http://apple.co/1oi1Pbm
Twitter stickers slowly roll out to users
Twitter has introduced "stickers," allowing users to add extra graphical elements to their photos before uploading them to the micro-blogging service. A library of hundreds of accessories, props, and emoji will be available to use as stickers, which can be resized, rotated, and placed anywhere on the photograph. Images with stickers will also become searchable with viewers able to select a sticker to see how others use the same graphic in their own posts. Twitter advises stickers will be rolling out to users over the next few weeks, and will work on both the mobile apps and through the browser. http://bit.ly/29bbwUE