June 11, 2012

March 13, 2012

In the weeks and months before Apple’s media events, the newswires are stormed by tons of reports about Apple’s upcoming announcements. Due to the frenzy, it is hard to keep track of who said what and when. Therefore, we are putting together the more notable calls and how those reports turned out:

We did this for the iPhone 4S in October 2011, and this is our Apple iPad and Apple TV media event rumor wrap-up:

What came true?

March 7 keynote: In early FebruaryAllThingsD called for an Apple iPad media event during the first week of March. At that time, we speculated a March 7 keynote due to the availability at San Francisco’s Yerba Buena Center (the location where Apple likes to hold these events) and Apple’s recent fondness for Wednesday events. iMore later outright reported on a March 7 third-generation iPad announcement.

Pre-orders and availability: The first clue at when Apple would publicly release the new iPad was when we broke the news that Apple would open a new store in London’s Harrods on March 16. In the days leading up to the event, our sources confirmed a March 16 launch in the United States and other countries, and these sources also pinpointed more international launches for the following Friday. In terms of pre-orders, we pinpointed a March 7 pre-order date for the new iPad.

The design: iLounge, which typically offers accurate Apple design information, perhaps because of its close relations with case manufacturers, was first to pinpoint an iPad 2-like design for the new iPad. It also said that this new design would be roughly half a millimeter thicker than the iPad 2’s design–which it is. In the weeks running up to the iPad’s announcement, The New York Times chimed in and said the design would be very similar to the iPad 2’s design.

Apple TV announcement: We first noticed shortages in the Apple TV supply chain on Feb 12. While some called the launch of an Apple TV at the iPad event ludicrous (30:00), “because it would take the focus away from the main attraction,” we broke the news that Apple would launch a new Apple TV model at the third-generation iPad event. At the time, we said that the new iPad would launch with a 1080P video service, and we pinpointed the device’s new Bluetooth 4.0 capabilities and J33 codename in the months’ prior. We also found Apple TV 3,1 references several months ago.

Siri Dictation: One of the notable features of the new iPad is its Siri Dictation support. It is a feature that allows users to dictate what they would like to type instead of using Apple’s touch-screen keyboard. In January, we broke the news that Siri Dictation would make its way to the new iPad thanks to some leftover strings in the early iOS 5.1 beta.

LTE: One of the most important upgrades in the new iPad is the new wireless system. Besides the new Bluetooth 4.0 and HSPA+ capabilities, the new LTE integration will do wonders for attachment loading, web browsing, and video watching. In August 2010, way before the “iPad 3” rumors started running at full-force, we reported that Apple was field-testing iOS 5 devices with LTE chips. We also said that the next-generation iPad was a very likely candidate to be a LTE device. In January, Bloomberg reported that the new iPad would sport LTE connectivity, then WSJ, iMore, and Reuters each followed up in the weeks after. The morning of the iPad event, Mr. X “confirmed” that 4G iPads would be sold worldwide.

The cameras: Alongside the third-generation iPad casing leaks came speculation surrounding the new iPad’s cameras. With the hole being bigger for the camera lens in the case leaks, many figured the new iPad would sport either the iPhone 4 or iPhone 4S camera. In the end, Apple merged the two ideas into what it is calling the “iSight” camera. As for the new iPad, this means the merging of the iPhone 4’s 5-megapixel shooter and the iPhone 4S’s advanced, custom optics system.

Retina Display: The Retina Display was perhaps the most rumored feature in the new iPad. After all, the 2,048-by-1, 536-resolution screen is the new iPad’s headline feature. Several news websites threw in their own sourcing for a Retina Display “iPad 3,” but it seems that the very first reports on a Retina Display iPad 3 (not iPad 2) came from analysts. The first major publication to confirm a Retina Display was the WSJ in August 2011, and MacRumors notably acquired a 2,048-by-1, 536 display in the weeks preceding Apple’s early March media event.

Pricing: We were able to report that new iPad prices would stay at the original iPad and iPad 2 price points ($499 to $829) a week before the event. We also said capacities would stay the same–which they did.

B82: We had all kinds of high-hopes for this $39 mystery accessory, but it turned out to be an updated Apple Digital AV Adapter (this)

Processor: The new iPad’s processor situation came to an atypical end. While reliable publications like Bloomberg and iMore claimed that the new iPad would include a quad-core processor, The Verge reported that it would stay dual core but would include better graphics performance. The result was actually a combination of the two: The new iPad sports an A5X processor with a dual-core processing unit, but it adds quad-core graphics. Confusion and situations involving “broken telephone” between sources and publications seems likely here, but do not worry… Apple is still working on that promised quad-core CPU.

What did not happen?

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March 7, 2012

Mr. X. just got word that 4G iPads are showing up in Apple’s inventory system.  Here are the first ones:



That is the J2A “Good” model and “Best”.  We’re fairly certain that Better 32GB is on its way.  That means that the 4G LTE iPads won’t only be in the US, but overseas as well.  It would seem to also confirm that Apple isn’t making an 8GB iPad (if that needed confirming).

Update: We’re also able to confirm that 64GB is high end. Sadly no 128GB model. expand full story

2:25: iPad 2 is staying on sale $100 off the 16GB one: $399, $529 for 3Gs – great for schools.

2:20 iPad video.

2:15 Almost 20 minutes of demo time for iPhoto and still scratching surface. Oh, just $4.99. All of iLife now on iPad.

2:05 Editing pictures in iPhoto from a professional DSLR (Nikon). Weird – no support for Google’s Picasa.

2:00 iPhoto for iPad ” Amazing” great way to browse and edit photos. Multi touch editing, Professional Quality Effects, Brushes, photo beaming, Photo journals.

1:58 – iMovie – new interface, looks like professional tool. And with 1080 camera built right in? iPads are going to be the new Video end to end tool – low end prosumer grade-ish at least.

1:56: New stuff for Garage Band – Smart Strings, Note Editor, iCloud sharing – JAM IN REAL TIME OMG

1:55 iWork Apps with jaw dropping graphics – available today at the app store (great – that helps a lot!)

1:53 “more memory and higher screen resolution than an Xbox 360 or PS3.”

1:51: Epic Games is demoing Dungeons: craft the Infinity Blade. looks pretty nuts. Guess that’s why Infinity Blade went on sale this morning.

1:50: Autodesk (guess Apple’s over that whole two decade Autocad boycott). We’ve had 10 million customers in 29 years. More than that in a year on the iPad.

Sketchbook Ink is new lineart app (watch out Illustrator!) export images greater than 100 megapixels.

1:45 Namco is demoing a Retina Jet fighter app

1:42: Preoders start today and delivered on March 16th in US, Canada, UK, France, Germany, Switzerland, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Australia.

1:40 Still has 10 hour battery on Wifi and 9 hours of 4G. Starts at $499. Same prices across the board.

1:35 AT&T and Verizon in US, Rogers, Bell and Telus in Canada. 2 US bands= 2 different LTE iPads.
Personal Hotspot too.

1:33 L to the TE 4G 72MB theoretical

1:30 Voice dictation Siri-ous.

1:29: 5 megapixel camera, 1080P recording. Crazy Apple optics. This will ruin just about every public event in the future.

1:28 Supposedly 4X performance of the just release NVIDIA Quad Core Tegra 3. I suppose there will be some discussion on this front.

1:27: A5X Quad core graphics. Dual core processor. Everyone was right. Or everyone was wrong!

1:26 “we’re allowed to call 264 pixels per inch Retina (a term we made up btw) because you hold it further from your face. Also AppleTV is Retina too.”

1:23 Schiller time! “Retina display” “Stunning” 2048 x 1536 pixels! (iPhone 4 stuff on repeat. Text, graphics – when can I have one?!) 1 million more pixels than 1080P TVs.

1:21: The new “iPad” That’s it. No suffix!

1:20 200K iPAd apps. Talking smack about the competition. Yelp, Twitter look bad on Android.

1:18 Speaking of Gloating, Apple sold more iPads than anyone else sold PCs and GDGT has the graph to prove it

Taking a bit of a break here to gloat that we called the whole AppleTV 1080P thing. For those who waited to buy an AppleTV, you are welcome :D Those that didn’t the 720P ones make great hockey pucks-fyi

1:17 Movie UI also has genius. (hopefully you can turn it off!)

1:15 New user interface looks a lot like Netflix a bit..

1:12 AppleTV 1080P. You don’t say. 9to5mac readers, take your jaw off the ground. iTunes Match support.

1:10: iCloud: zooming past 100 million customers already. Now supports movies

1:09: App store. Virtual cycle: Better apps= mo money= better developers= mo money. 25 billion app downloads, not all of them free.

1:08: Siri is now in Japananese (whoops Siri already told us that!) and in Australia Germany, etc.

1:07: 315 million iOS devices and 62 million just last quarter

1:05: Retail Stores (362 total right now – one for every day of the year -road trip?!), Grand Central. Newest Largest Store in Amsterdam.

Looks like Tim is actually there!

1:00 Tim Cook enters the stage…”Apple is leading the Post-PC revolution…Cloud+iPad, iPhone+ iPod” – 172 million “post-PC” devices were sold last year – 76% of Apple’s revenues.

12:55 Reporting from NYC…

12:50: Spoiler alert: Here is everything new that will get announced today (thanks Mr. X!)




12:45: People are seated listening to music.

12:41: 20 minutes to go. Looks like the Daily’s Peter HA got on the wrong bus:

(the short one? – sorry!)

(lineup begins)

We’ll be posting news as it happens today.  We’re expecting a faster Retina Display iPad with improved cameras as well as an updated AppleTV and maybe a few surprises, particularly in the area of software.  Bookmark this page and come back often for updated info.

Some news: We’ve just got the name of the B82 part: Updated Apple Digital AV Adapter (this).  Boo.  Was hoping for Bluetooth audio remote.

More news: We’ve got 4G LTE “confirmed” for iPad.  Also no 128GB or 8 GBiPads, shockingly.

Interestingly, Barack Obama will be speaking about American Energy today in North Carolina – probably not too far from Apple’s solar farm in Maiden.

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March 6, 2012

We’ve gotten a few more tidbits about tomorrow’s Apple TV announcement (Oh, there will be a new iPad too!).  The Apple TV J33 model, MD199LL/A – J33 BEST -USA, which we’ve covered before will come in at the same $99 price point (and similar prices globally).  We know from previous reports that it will have updated hardware internally including Bluetooth 4.0 Broadcom chip as well as a higher powered processor capable of 1080P video

It will likely look the same as the current Apple TV with similar ports otherwise, though that hasn’t been confirmed.

Also, the new mystery B82 accessory part just got a price as well: $39.  We’re still not sure what exactly it is (Dock, A/V cable – currently $39, remote – currently $19, etc.).  We’re not expecting anything too spectacular however under $40.

Finally, MacRumors confirms tips that we’ve been hearing today.

Apple appears to be making a similar transition for the iPad with tomorrow’s introduction of the iPad 3, rolling out a $99 AppleCare+ for iPad warranty that would replace the current $79 standard AppleCare package.

AppleCare +, which also covers accidental damage with a $49 deductible, for iPad has shown up on a number of occasions in EasyPay as a $99 option leading our tipsters to believe that it will debut tomorrow.

We’ll be covering all the action tomorrow live, so make sure you stop back.

As always, thanks Mr. X! expand full story

March 2, 2012

iPad 3 price matrix will be the same as iPad 2, above

One of the remaining mysteries ahead of the iPad 3 launch next week are the prices and configurations.  If you don’t like surprises we have good news.

There was a rumor last week that gained traction which indicated that the US prices would increase by $70-$80.  That doesn’t appear to be the case.

We’ve gotten word that iPad pricing is going to be the same across the board as the current iPad 2 models which should be no big surprise given Apple’s history – they rarely raise prices.  Even better, some countries with currencies doing better than the US dollar should expect to see marginal drops in prices.

While we’re squashing, the configurations appear to be the same as current 16/32/64GB.  One of the strange succession of posts from Digitimes this week said that Apple would move to 8GB/16GB/32GB.  That appears even less likely than before, if that is even possible.

Update: This has no bearing on LTE one way or another

As always, thanks to Mr. X!

iPad Model numbers are as follows: expand full story

February 28, 2012

iPads and Apple TVs work together for innovative AirPlay features

Reliable sources familiar with Apple’s upcoming product release have said that the company is in fact launching a new Apple TV alongside the next-generation iPad. We initially reported that Apple would be releasing two major new products in early March, and then believed the product would be a new Apple TV due to mounting code-based evidence for such a product with simultaneous supply constraints. Now, sources have outright said Apple is launching this J33 (the new Apple TV’s codename) alongside the new iPad.

The new Apple TV is rumored to include a faster processor, possibly a variation of the dual-core A5 chip. The dual-core A5 chip has been said to be required for the Apple TV to finally stream 1080p quality video, but Apple is also working on an “A5X” chip that is dual-core, which also includes an improved graphics engine. Those two components of the chip would likely deliver the smooth video playback that Apple would include in such a product. Other possibilities from the rumor-mill include a redesigned Bluetooth 4.0 remote control, and Siri support, but those are not rumors that we can independently confirm (yet). This new Apple TV would seemingly launch with a new 1080P movie service from Apple’s iTunes Store. Read on for more…

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October 24, 2011

October 23, 2011

October 20, 2011

Last week we exclusively reported that the current line of MacBook Pros is severely constrained and that part numbers for a new MacBook Pro line had surfaced. Based on these similar internal part numbers, the new MBP’s design should be the same as the current design.

Now, we’ve received pricing for the new laptops and the prices for each unit are the same as the prices for the current generation.

With supplies only becoming more constrained, and with shipments already touching down in select countries, we think a launch next week is likely (between Tuesday and Thursday). That is, of course, if there are no unforeseen circumstances. Thanks Mr. X! 

One more thing… after the break:

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October 13, 2011

October 2, 2011

September 29, 2011

Yesterday we reported that tweaked iPhone 4 models and white iPod touch models have appeared in Apple’s internal inventory systems ahead of the October 4th Apple event. Today, though, comes the big news: the next-generation iPhone has made its way into Apple’s inventory system. This new iPhone is the N94 device that we found in the iOS SDK many months ago. This device is confirmed to pack Apple’s dual-core A5 processor, and is likely the device we described with an 8MP camera, 1GB of RAM, Nuance Dictation speech-to-text, and the groundbreaking Assistant feature.

Perhaps the most interesting aspect of the new iPhone appearing in the inventory system is that the model number is similar to the one from a purported ‘iPhone 4S’ packaging label we spotted yesterday on a Chinese forum. We quickly dismissed the label as fake due to its unknown origin, but it is now possibly real. The model number from the label is MD239 (a 16GB unit), while the model number for the “better” (likely 32GB unit) is MD234. According to Mr. X, this sequence is sensible, but could  just be a coincidence. If legitimate, the next-generation iPhone will be marketed as the iPhone 4S, but we definitely would not call that anywhere near confirmed. Another tidbit: IMEI and MEID being together on the label would seem to confirm this new iPhone to be GSM+CDMA (thanks @rokorre!).

Following up on our report yesterday that two new tweaked iPhone 4 models have appeared in the system, we are now hearing that the two models represent black and white units. The N90A is likely an 8GB iPhone 4 that comes in black and white.

iPods too!

We are also hearing that all three iPod touch capacities will be seeing price drops in certain international countries. The price drops for the 32GB and 64GB models will be minimal – perhaps due to currency fluctuations – but the 8GB pricing will change substantially. Translated, the 8GB iPod touch may even reach the $199 price point or below again in the United States, but that is unconfirmed. With the release of the $199 8GB Kindle Fire yesterday, a move like this from Apple makes sense.

Thanks, Mr. X!

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September 28, 2011

September 15, 2011

As Apple’s next-generation iPhone festivities come closer to reality, Apple appears set to discontinue their Bumper case – the controversial $30 accessory which Apple provided free of charge to users complaining about their iPhone 4 antenna connection. Some have said that $30 is a bit expensive for a piece of rubber.

As Apple transitions its iPhone line to the iPhone 5, some may not find Apple’s discontinuation of an iPhone 4 accessory surprising. But, there are the countless rumors pointing to Apple retaining the iPhone 4 design for their fifth-generation iPhone.

With Apple apparently set to discontinue the Bumper, the next iPhone may require an updated Bumper or may even feature an all new design. Of course, there is also the possibility that Apple has simply decided to discontinue the Bumper but still retain the iPhone 4 design. After all, an 8GB iPhone 4 has been rumored.

That being said, Apple is set to discontinue the 16GB and 32GB iPhone 4 – according to stock constraints of the product in major regions.

Thanks Mr. X!

In somewhat related news, CaseMate garnered some publicity today with its iPhone 5 cases, that resemble lots of previous cases, below:

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August 14, 2011

In early August we broke the news that Apple began selling OS X Lion USB sticks through AppleCare. Now, Apple will likely begin selling these USB sticks sometime this week to the general public for $69. According to Mr. X, the new product has shown up in the Apple internal system for a launch on August 15th (tonight/tomorrow) – but we can’t confirm that the launch will actually happen on the 15th. Because it has shown up in the system, we are confident that the product’s release is happening very soon.

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August 8, 2011

Yesterday, we broke the news that Apple was launching an ‘iMac for Education’ with downgraded specs to the education market for $999.  It was originally scheduled to be released toward the middle of the month (August 16th was set to be release date – and it still is when they hit the streets), but with the cat out of the bag, Apple went public with the details today.

As per usual, our man Mr. X, was spot on with details revealing:

  • 3.1GHz Intel Core i3 Dual-Core, 21.5-inch LCD
  • AMD Radeon HD 6750 with 256 MB, 2GB RAM
  • 250GB Hard Drive, SuperDrive, OS X Lion

Some interesting notes about the machine:

  • It appears to be a hybrid between this year’s model and last year’s with slower processors and this year’s video card
  • No Thunderbolt underscores that these are aimed at labs and kiosk type situations.  Even Apple’s $599 entry Mac Mini now has Thunderbolt
  • Half the RAM at a paltry 2GB seems absurdly low. Again, this screams “kiosk!” Interestingly, Apple says the upgrades are “only configurable at the Apple Store” but lists RAM modules to the sides (right).
  • We’re told that this is the Education price of 1 of these machines and there are additional price drops at volume with the machine quickly hitting $899 in bulk and below (EDUs talk to your Apple rep!)

For those jealous of the EDU-only pricing, Apple still offers the previous model refurbished with the exact same specs (but twice the RAM, older GPU) for just  $929.

August 7, 2011

Update (Aug. 8th): Following our report, Apple has gone ahead and released it!. Interestingly, no Thunderbolt and RAM not upgradable?!

Apple is gearing up to launch a new addition to the iMac lineup later this month that appears to be geared towards education/volume customers. The new iMac has less power than the current line of all-in-one Apple desktop computers and also has less storage space. The computer packs a last generation 3.1 GHz dual-core processor (3.06 GHz rounded up), 2 GB of DDR3 RAM, 250 GB of hard drive storage space, and the AMD Radeon HD 6750M graphics processor with 256 MB of dedicated memory.

This lower-end iMac obviously has much less horsepower than the current iMac line and should be priced as such. For comparison, the entry level 21.5-inch iMac features a 2.5 GHz quad-core processor, 4 GB of RAM, a 500 GB hard drive, and the same AMD Radeon HD 6750M graphics processor but with double the dedicated memory at 512 MB. This entry level 21.5-inch iMac is priced at $1,199, so don’t be surprised to see this less-powerful machine with a sub-$1000 price tag. For reference, Apple’s last education-geared iMac was priced at $899. A similar (more RAM, worse graphics) refurbished model is currently priced at $929 (pictured below).

Apple is expected to silently release this new machine later this month. As always, thanks Mr. X.

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