Apple's September 9 event won't be about techy things that bloggers want. It won't even be about what the best minds of the Mac Web think Apple needs to deliver. Rather, it'll be about delivering a remarkable, convincing vision that captures our imagination and enthusiasm for a better future.
I have come to learn that Apple's agenda for a big event — and the September 9 one is BIG — usually turns out to be different than observers expect.
The first, easy mistake to make is to extrapolate from what we have now to a desired technical increment. That is, if Apple is shipping product 3.0 now, then the event will introduce Product 4.0. Make a list of what was missing in 3.0 and proceed. (Yawn.)
That can work in routine events, but this event will probably be different. Except for the iPhone, then I'll elaborate.
We have a fairly good feel, from the many supply chain leaks, about the iPhone 6 features. It'll come in two sizes and will have a sapphire display. Regarding the name, the number 6 is one more than 5(s), but then we don't even know that it will be branded that way. Bumping the number is just a surmise, just as when we expected the iPad 4 to become the iPad 5. Instead, we got iPad Air.
Aside the from the iPhone, however, I think it's dangerous to put too much trust in the incremental approach when there's so much at stake. Apple's has been brewing some new visions for some time now. It's time to make a splash.
I also think it can be dangerous to draw conclusions from the politics of what's omitted. That is to say, every observer has an idea about their pet product they want to see Apple amp up. If that product isn't showcased, all kinds of dreadful conclusions are presented. (Yawn.)
For example, TMO's managing editor, Jeff Gamet, doesn't think there will be an iPad announcement. I think there will be a new iPad of some kind announced, and, for fun, we have made a bet on that. (A glass of Scotch.)
I get the feeling that this event will be so important and will so completely punctuate Apple's vision for the future (CarPlay, home automation, personal health, retail payments) that we'll be blown away by the scope of the vision that has come together. We'll also see how the foundation Apple has laid with its current and new products and OSes feeds into these visions. After all, I expect this to be primarily a product event.
When the lights go down and the band starts to play, I think we'll see some amazing integration and amazing initiatives that logically draw from Apple's steady development and integration of its products.
And then whether or not a particular product is upgraded in just the way we wanted will look myopic and foolish.
Next: the tech news debris for the week of Aug 25. iPhone 6 mania.