Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference online-only event invitation has been sent. The event scheduled on the 7th of June 2021 at 10 a.m. PDT. Usually, WWDC events are dedicated to software, but this year, according to several Apple leakers, we will see new hardware announced during the event.
If you want to be surprised, wait for the official event, but if you want to catch a quick glimpse at what to expect, read more.
iOS 15 and iPadOS 15
Let’s start with software, leading with iOS 15 is to be announced. Last year, iOS 14 brought big changes to how we interact with the user-interface of iOS with widgets and app library. Alongside the aesthetic changes, a lot of features were added including app tracking prompts in iOS 14.5 and several other privacy-centric features.
This year, according to Bloomberg, we expect a new way for users to handle notifications on iOS 15 with smarter modes that enable you more control over what you see at what times and locations, and additional privacy features.
The notifications modes are expected to be the biggest change with features allowing users to choose from several modes such as working mode, sleeping, walking, etc. These will give you higher control of what your phone does during each of them — whether your iPhone makes a sound when a notification appears, or if it blocks certain apps from distracting you, automatic replies and more. We could also see always-on display mode on iPhones this year as suggested by engadget.
iPadOS is also expected to receive similar features with an updated home screen. With the introduction of M1 chip to the iPad Pro, a lot in the tech community are speculating that we may see Apple pushing the limit with iPad apps that could take advantage of the powerful chip by enabling support to Apple creative suit of apps.
Additionally, iMessage is being updated to include more social features with the ultimate goal of becoming a social network. These features may be delayed and not announced during the event depending on the status of development.
macOS and Apple SoC (System on a Chip)
Last year, Apple revamped macOS into an almost identical clone of iPadOS. That said, we don’t expect a lot of changes on macOS. This year, however, Apple is rumored to launch a new MacBook pro during WWDC event which is unusual. According to Jon Prosser, a noted leaker, during WWDC, Apple will release new MacBooks 14-inch and 16-inch models, both rumored to ditch the controversial Touch Bars. The MacBook Pro announcement during WWDC have been backed by several other leakers. Prosser additionally leaked what ports we expect to see starting from the long-awaited SD card reader, HDMI port, and a return of MagSafe chargers.
These changes may give the impression Apple is moving backwards in providing features they have removed before. However, the tech giant is planning to innovate on the devices with new mini-LED screens that are found in Apple’s Pro Display XDR and most recently in iPad Pro 12.9-inch. They are also rumored to introduce a new SoC, allegedly to be called M1X.
A 3D render artist, Antonio De Rosa, created this render of the upcoming MacBook Pro 16-inch based on rumors. The final product released from Apple may look different.
We don’t have a lot of confirmed information about the new M1X chip. However, there are several speculations around it. According to TechRadar, the M1X chip could see new developments in adding Thunderbolt support, and may even take advantage of DDR5 and PCIe 4.0, meaning faster memory and SSD access speeds over the M1. Additionally, CPU-Monkey gives us an alleged look at the M1X chipset with 12 CPU cores housing 12 CPU threads with frequency of 3.35 GHz. Based on core architecture of big.LITTLE design.
As for the Internal Graphics of the SoC, the alleged 16-core GPU is to have GPU frequency of 3.20 GHz and Max. GPU Memory of 16 GB.
There aren’t a lot of speculations or rumors on the new watchOS. Apple has however confirmed adding assistive touch which would enable more accessibility features on the new OS. Prosser has given us a look at the new Apple Watch, but besides that, we don’t have much to go on.
That about wraps it up, these are some of the upcoming announcements that are expected this year during WWDC 2021. We may see more, we may see less, but it’s a packed year in the tech world.
One bonus leak below if you have made it this far:
Apple is bringing colors back to several of their products. Rumors on the new upcoming MacBook Air by Prosser suggest that we will see the new MacBooks Air in several colors as well. The new MacBooks Pro are also speculated to come in different colors.