August is among us, believe it or not. Really, it seems time has just flown by this year. Personally, it's a little terrifying for me since I have a little one on the way, and I'll be taking my first steps into the wonderful world of parenthood in just a few more months. Honestly, it's a little stressful but exciting too. Anyways, we're just about a month away from new iPhones, so let's get right down to it.
Unfortunately, with the way things have been going, it is becoming less and less likely that we are getting an in-person iPhone 13 event in September. With COVID-19 still around with a Delta variant and cases rising, it looks like we'll have to do another virtual event this year, as even Apple is delaying having employees return to the offices. Honestly, while the virtual events work really well, I still miss the excitement of in-person events. I enjoyed seeing my all of my online Twitter friends and colleagues posting photos of meeting Tim Cook and other Apple executives, and even just seeing the hands-on photos and videos of the new products. Plus, the live presentations always had some nice moments, as well as some cringey ones, but it's the ambiance that I miss. Sigh — maybe next year? Who knows at this point. But at least with virtual events, no one is missing out on anything, really, so I guess it's a decent tradeoff.
A recent report from Bloomberg's Mark Gurman this week was about how Face ID could be coming to Macs, as well as all iPhones and iPads within a few years. This is an exciting bit of news because I've wanted this for a while now. Ever since Apple brought Face ID with the iPhone X, I always thought this would make perfect sense on something like a computer. Instead, we're still using Touch ID on Macs and most iPads. While I understand that Touch ID has been useful while we're out and about with face masks on, you are less likely to have your mask on while using an iPad or your favorite MacBook. Again, Face ID on everything is still a few years away, according to the report, but it's something that I'll be looking forward to very much.
And I know that the hot news right now is the iPhone 13, but that isn't stopping rumors that the iPhone 14 could have a titanium chassis upgrade. I mean, currently, the iPhone 12 uses aluminum, with the iPhone 12 Pro having stainless steel, so titanium would definitely be a big upgrade. I actually prefer titanium (it's what the case on my Apple Watch Series 5 is made from) because it seems to be so lightweight and quite durable, at least from my experience. My best Apple Watch, which I've had for over two years now, is pretty much scuff-free, even though I often bump my wrist into things. So yeah, sign me up for a titanium iPhone 14, but I'd be curious what colors that will come in — more colorful options for the Pro lineup, Apple, please!
Moving on to the larger sibling of the iPhone, it seems that the next iPad Air could be getting more Pro-like features, while the iPad mini 6 may not get a major redesign after all. According to this rumor, the 5th generation iPad Air may be seeing an upgrade with a dual-lens camera system, LiDAR, and 4-speaker audio system. Of course, this is kind of expected with the major redesign that the iPad Air 4 had last year, which made it look much more like an iPad Pro on the surface. But if it's true that the iPad mini 6, and possibly the base model iPad, aren't going to get a redesign to make it more like the rest of the lineup, that's disappointing, especially for mini fans. I mean, those models still look like the originals, and it's gotten stale when you compare it with the Air and Pro lineup — isn't it time for a change? I suppose we'll have to wait and see.
In terms of Mac, it seems that those who have been waiting for a larger iMac with M1 will need to wait a bit longer because it may not be ready until next year. This is supposed to be the iMac model that replaces the 27-inch iMac (2020) (which I bought and am using right now) with a possibly larger display. While this news is another letdown, it makes sense, given all of the component shortages in the industry right now. Honestly, I definitely wouldn't have lasted — I was working on an old 2013 15-inch MacBook Pro before my iMac, and it was pretty much on its last legs at that point. There is no way I could have held out another year for a big iMac!
Speaking of Intel-based Macs, it seems that Apple isn't completely leaving us in the dust. The fourth macOS Monterey beta brings Live Text support for Intel Macs, which was originally going to be an M1 Mac-only feature. While this is just one feature, it may be a good sign of things, and at least Apple is kind of giving Intel users some respect, in a way. Hopefully, this isn't the only previously M1-only feature that can be made available for Intel Macs. I don't expect every feature, but maybe one more before the public release would be nice. After all, I want my 27-inch iMac to last a good few years, you know?
And since we're closing in on the fall, this also means iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 are just around the corner. Some code has been found within iOS 15 that hints at a new verification system when adding ID cards to the Wallet app. It'll have a setup that is similar to Face ID, so it's not just taking a photo of your face. This is exciting, because again, I've been waiting for digital ID cards for a very long time, and it's good to see that it's finally coming to fruition, though availability depends on where you live. This new verification method should help convince skeptics who thought this could encourage fraud — though nothing is perfect, it's a step in the right direction. I'm eager to see where this goes, and hopefully, I can try this out sooner rather than later.
Anyways, that's it for this week. Until next time.
- Christine Romero-Chan