With less than two weeks to go until WWDC, the rumors are beginning to paint a picture of a jam-packed show, with a major watchOS refresh, some of our “most requested features” in iOS 17, and a customizable Lock Screen in iPadOS 17. But beyond the upgrades and enhancements coming to our older devices, Apple will also use the stage to unveil some products that are completely brand new to Apple’s catalog. Here are five that may make an appearance as we all watch the June 5 keynote.
Reality Pro headset
While the first part of the keynote will almost certainly be devoted to iOS, iPadOS, macOS, and the rest, everyone will be waiting for Tim Cook to throw up a One More Thing slide and unveil the first truly new Apple product in years: An AR/VR headset. Dubbed Reality Pro, the new device will be unlikely anything we’ve ever seen from Apple and it’s easily Apple’s most exciting release since the Apple Watch.
We’re expecting a headset that looks something like a pair of ski goggles with 8K displays, an M2 processor, advanced eye- and head-tracking, and a Digital Crown. But whatever it looks like (and costs), it’ll be like anything we’ve ever seen from Apple or anybody else.
Along with the new headset will come a new OS, and this one won’t just be iOS with a new name. Apple’s xrOS—short for extended reality OS—will usher in a completely new interface that blends augmented and virtual realities into an immersive, interactive environment. According to rumors, the three main focus areas will be gaming, entertainment, and communication, so we expect completely reworked and reimagined versions of FaceTime, TV, and Messages, along with anything else Apple has planned.
15-inch MacBook Air
Back in 2019 when the 16-inch MacBook Pro made its debut, Apple retired our favorite laptop size: the 15-inch MacBook Pro. Nearly four years later, it’s rumored to be coming back as a 15-inch MacBook Air. Rumors say Apple is gearing up to launch a larger Air with the same design and processor as the current model. Apple has experimented with different-sized Airs, but this would be the first time it offered one larger than 13 inches. And even though it’s “just” an Air we think more than a few pros will want one too.
M2 Ultra processor
Apple has released the M2, M2 Pro, and M2 Max, leaving one chip remaining: the M2 Ultra. Rumors peg the high-end chip as having up to 24 CPU cores, 76 GPU cores, and 192GB RAM, a reasonable upgrade from the 20-core CPU/64-core GPU M1 Ultra. Currently, the chip is only found in the Mac Studio, so the new chip could arrive as part of a Mac Studio refresh or the long-awaited Apple silicon update to the next product…
Apple silicon Mac Pro
It’s been nearly three years since the transition to Apple silicon was announced at WWDC 2020 and Apple’s most important Mac is still running Intel chips. Why do we think the Apple silicon Mac Pro will finally be unveiled this year? Apple has used the WWDC stage to announce the past three Mac Pros: the Intel G5 tower in 2006; the cylinder in 2013; and the current model in 2019, not to mention the iMac Pro in 2017. Current rumors are calling for the new Mac to have a souped-up M2 Ultra processor and upgradeable storage, but likely not as modular as the current model.