For several weeks now, just about every Apple observer has written the same thing about Apple's March 21 event: A new 4-inch iPhone (iPhone SE? iPhone 6c?) and a new 9.7-inch iPad. No new Apple Watch 2. But if that's all we get (and don't get), the event is going to be fairly boring. What might Apple have up its sleeve? I have an idea.
First off, here's the best article I've found that explains what we'll probably see on March 21st. From the awesome Andrew Cunningham at ars technica, "Let us loop you in: What to expect from Apple’s March 21 event."
However, I believe that Apple just about has to include a discussion of the MacBook line. Andrew echoes the rumors that an update for the lower end MacBooks and MacBook Airs that would use recently available Skylake processors is unlikely. "Chances are slim."
I think the source leaks to that effect are a deception by Apple. The capitulation to the rumors overlooks the notion that Apple doesn't need to have product on hand, ready to ship on March 21. Apple always has the liberty to make an announcement and ship a little later. Not too much later.
The stronger Skylake CPUs for the MacBook Pros won't be available until later in the year. So, yes, no new MacBook Pros. And yet....
One scenario that I like is to announce an updated MacBook and simply announce lower prices for the MacBook Air with a mind towards better competing in the low end and K-12 education markets.
It makes no sense to me to update the MacBook Air line, keep the price artificially high, and ignore the idea that the MacBook (and MacBook Pros) are the future. After all, if you watched Tim Cook being interviewed by ABC's David Muir, it was a (apparently space gray) MacBook on his desk.
Also, there's been a flood of new USB-C peripherals lately. The viability of the MacBook is now enormously greater than when it first shipped last year. Just like the original MacBook Air which had too few USB ports, if Apple were to add a second USB-C port on the right side of the MacBook and speed up the processor, they would fly off the shelves at light speed. And, recall, the original MacBook has always been insanely popular, selling very, very well. This would put the 2016 MacBook in hyperdrive.
And so my money's on all the items discussed in the ars article, but I'm looking for a new, exciting MacBook that will provide a little spice and a pleasant surprise over and above what we've been (yawn) expecting.
Will Apple add Rose Gold? I'm not going that far!
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