The keynote is now over so it’s time to see how I did! Results are in red.
Well less than 24 hours to go, so I may as well nail my colours to the mast and give you my take on how it’s going to go tomorrow.
I’m feeling slightly nervous about this one as expectations seem to be even higher than usual and there’s nothing worse than being disappointed, even when Apple perform and release a ton of new stuff – it’s just not what people have been led to expect.
So saying that, let’s press on!
The World Wide Developers conference has three themes – iPhone (Mobile), OS X and IT (Enterprise) so I would expect some announcements on all three themes.
3G iPhone – The fact that a 3G iPhone is to be launched appears to be a given – scary stuff! However, with Apple withholding stocks of the iPhone for the past three weeks or so, I have to admit that this is the nearest I’ve ever seen to a dead cert for any Apple key note.
Rating: Yes! – Pretty much a cert!
GPS – Mixed feelings on this. Yes, I’d love them to include this but I’m not sure if they’d take the hit on the extra expense and the extra power requirements. Also, why would they have gone to all the trouble of including the cell tower and wifi hot spot triangulation in the last iPhone update. This is an unlikely for me but I would really welcome the addition of GPS.
Rating: No! – Well at least I wanted it. Glad to see it included
Video on the iPhone – If they are embracing 3G on the iPhone then surely video will be there too? I’d even go so far as to say that they’ll also include some mechanism whereby you can have a front facing video capture to do video-conferencing via iChat. I think the leaked CrunchGear photos will be close to the mark, especially with the design theme of tapering edges – just like the MacBook Air.
Rating: Yes and No! – No mention of video – Extremely surprised. Speaking with various people though, it appears the video hooks are available via the API so this may be facilitated by third party apps. See newer post
802.11n WiFi – I’d previously considered 802.11n for the iPhone but was prompted by a twitter from Klaus Lovgreen earlier today to include it. Provided the chipset is small enough and power efficient, 802.11n would be a welcome addition.
Rating: No! – still 802.11g
Wireless Sync – OK, more of a wish than a prediction but Apple really need to implement wireless syncing for the iPhone.
Rating: Yes & No! – Giving myself a let on this one as MobileMe does allow wireless application data syncing and the App store will sync apps wirelessly. I did really mean iTunes syncing so not 100% on this one!
Applications and App Store – Fully expect to see some major software vendors to demonstrate some iPhone apps that will make your head spin. Available as soon as the App store is launched.
Rating: Yes! – But too, too many during the keynote
Games – Lots and lots of iPhone games!
Rating: Yes! – But too, too many during the keynote
Release Date of the iPhone 2.0 – Within 2 weeks of the Keynote
Rating: No! – Not until July 11th but I sort of called it wouldn’t be available on the day
.Mac Upgrade/Rebranding – Touted as a major relaunch of .Mac as MobileMe or something similar, both the timing and the venue for a major announcement on .Mac seems likely due to the increased relevance of Apples mobile focus and the fact that this is a development event.
This will have significant overlap with both the iPhone theme and the IT theme. The enhanced .Mac will offer many push technologies to further boost the potency of the iPhone. One thing that concerns me with the increased functionality provided in iPhone 2.0 with the additions for Exchange support is the exclusion of these features for non-Exchange users i.e a large percentage of Mac users. Apple need to be able to provide these additional features to corporate Mac users so I would imagine they will provide some additional tools/features for Apple Mail and potentially other applications.
Rating: Yes and Yes! – I think I nailed this one
10.6 Launch – I fully expect the 10.6 announcement to be as rumoured although dropping PowerPC support won’t happen just yet – it’s much too soon. The rumour is that 10.6 will be a performance enhancement/stability release without any major new features. This could be an excellent ploy when comparing OS X with the problematic bloatware that is Vista and the apparent Leopard copycat that is Windows 7.
Why move forward on new features when Leopard already has a ton of cutting edge features already (including multi-touch) and the biggest problem Windows suffers from is performance and stability? A performance/stability release would show Apple is more concerned with the user experience and as a side benefit, I would imagine this strategy would free up a lot of spare resource for Apple to apply on developing other software and other consumer products. In most respects, I think I’d prefer a performance/stability release!
Rating: Yes! – I think I’m OK with this one! – Link
Enterprise Level Apps – As previously indicated, expect to see some significant changes in Apple software to support the Enterprise. This may take a more important part of the keynote than people expect. Apple have the Enterprise firmly in their sights based on the huge steps they are taking in the iPhone space. I fully expect them to at least seed some ideas on how they can support the Enterprise using the Mac and OS X to fully engage those corporates who adopt the iPhone.
Rating: Yes! – Some additional functions of supporting the iPhone in the Enterprise but not perhaps on the OSX side
One More Thing
Well your guess is as good as mine! Some suggestions….
Mac Tablet – Nah! Would be too revolutionary and divert too much information away from the iPhone. Could be available by MacWorld 2009
Rating: Yes! – No Mac Tablet
Updated MacBook Pro – Although the MBP has had a recent speed bump and chipset change, the overall design is badly in need of modernisation. As the event is a developers event and the bulk of those in the audience will probably have a MBP on their lap (heat permitting) or in their bag, the introduction of a redesigned MBP is a possibility. Lots of design cues can be taken from the more modern Macs such as the glass and aluminium styling of the iMac or the tapering design of the MacBook Air. There may also design cues adopted from the newly released iPhones.
New Cinema Displays – Well I had to include this didn’t I. If there is one product range badly in need of a refresh and price adjustment, it’s the Apple Cinema Displays. If they make an appearance, expect some design cues from the iMac again plus the inclusion of the new super bright LCD displays as found in the more recent laptops. I have heard from certain quarters that iSight cameras are perhaps not welcomed in new Cinema Displays so the inclusion of iSights are less than certain.
Rating: No! And for the record, this is the last time I will ever mention Cinema Displays in a Keynote prediction blog
So there you go, nothing too earth shattering or completely unexpected but Steve Jobs does have a tendency to surprise us at these events so I wouldn’t be too shocked if things turned out completely differently!