Not Bloody Likely

Apple’s 2012 is nearly over. With the exception of iTunes and the Mac Pro, they have refreshed every product in their lineup (and the iTunes refresh is forthcoming, don’t forget).1 Keen observers will note that Apple shifted their product strategy to a June-through-October cycle, if we assume they’re using a more-or-less annual refresh rate.2 Now, Apple won’t go nearly two full quarters without a product launch of some kind. By moving the iPad launch to the autumn, it’s likely that they’re clearing out some space for at least one major product launch in the first third of 2013. What could it be?

Jay Yarow over at Business Insider has compiled a list of every “major” product he expects Apple to launch in 2013 (linkbait warning, obviously). He sees a true Apple television launching in the spring, along with an app store for it, and some sort of Pandora competitor. None of this would surprise me, and an iTunes streaming service seems very likely, given Apple’s clout in the music industry. Yarow also thinks Apple will introduce an iPad Mini with a retina display in the spring, which is doubtful.

There’s also the curious inclusion of a cheap, “totally different” iPhone, because:

If Apple really wants to win the smartphone war it needs to introduce a cheap phone to sell in places like China and India.

Surprise! Yarow thinks Apple wants to compete with Android devices on price, which is cute because Android is a free (gratis, not libre) operating system. Apple’s not in a price war. They proved that by introducing their smaller tablet at $329, not $199, and they’re going to sell a shitload of them.

Yarow also thinks Apple is going to add transit directions to Maps in iOS 7. Not likely, given how long it’s taken Google to get access to just some of the world’s public transit services.

This list seems misguided and smells like linkbait.

  1. Update: This snarky tweet from Kontra reminded me that Apple did not update iWork or iLife this year, either. ↥︎

  2. As I’ve said before, assuming anything about Apple’s product strategy is a great way to be proven very wrong in the future. But this time, suspend your disbelief and roll with it. ↥︎