So that's it. The iPhone 14 is official (and so too are the AirPods Pro 2 (2022)). And I'm already over it. Given the weeks and months of rumours and leaks that I consumed before Apple's 'Far Out' event, I think I was exhausted by the iPhone 14 launch before it even happened.
While I'm an iPhone user and was keen to see what Tim Cook had up his sleeve, The list of usual improvements while impressive on paper haven't really turned my head. I've actually shifted my focus to what might lie ahead and I think you should too – there's a lot to be excited about.
The Apple rumour mill never stops turning and, based on rumblings across the internet, I've compiled a list of new, and in my eyes, more interesting products that we should all be hoping make an appearance in future months. And if we're lucky, a couple of these might even appear before the end of 2022.
Ever since Apple discontinued the HomePod (and actually, even before that), the internet began speculating on the next full-sized Apple smart speaker.
The early HomePod 2 leaks have been rife with predictions of a built-in display to complement Siri voice control; an upgraded processor – the same one expected for the new Apple Watches; and a camera for facilitating FaceTime calls. But it's almost as though not enough rumours and leaks have populated the internet yet to think that a launch is imminent. And besides, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman and Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo have both proposed the possibility of 2023 launch dates.
The original was and still is a great multi-room speaker and combined with the HomePod Mini it's capable of giving even the kings of the category, Sonos, a run for its money if you just want a basic set-up. When our Apple HomePod review came out, we referred to it as the "best-sounding, most music-oriented smart speaker currently available" and I think if Apple put its mind to, it an updated version could be the Apple device that everyone can get onboard with.
AirPods Max 2
I'm a big wireless headphones fan and they don't get much better than the original AirPods Max. I'm keen to see a sequel, which according to a report by Gurman back in May suggested they could be more imminent. He believes an "AirPods Max refresh with new colors" is on the way as soon as this fall/autumn. Obviously, they didn't arrive at the 'Far Out' event, though, so perhaps they will arrive closer to the two-year anniversary of the originals, which were a surprise launch in December 2020. Fingers crossed.
Not much has been leaked about the design and features of any next-gen model, besides a revamped, more substantial case (thank goodness), new colours and perhaps even some gesture controls, though we do have an AirPods Max 2 wishlist of our own.
Apple TV 4K (2022)
Rumour has it that a couple of new Apple TV streaming devices are in the works. We've seen reports from Gurman that a new Apple TV 4K will get Apple's more powerful A14 chip, while Ming-Chi Kuo believes a cheaper Apple TV streamer is in the product pipeline.
Upgrading the current 4K model is a natural evolution but I'm very keen to see a cheaper version that could take on the Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K and Roku rivals. Given Apple's knack for delivering a great user experience it would be great to experience this in a more affordable package – how does an Apple TV nano sound? If Apple gets it right, it could be a streaming no-brainer.
The current, 2nd Gen Apple TV 4K (2021) only launched in May last year and there was a four-year gap between that model and its predecessor. It feels quite early in the streamer's lifetime to be launching a successor, so I think a 2023 launch for any revamps or new additions to Apple's streamer family is more likely.
Apple iPad (10th Gen), iPad Pro (6th Gen)
History has taught us that Apple isn't averse to launching an iPad in September, after all, the current 9th Gen Apple iPad (2021) launched in September last year while both the eighth- and seventh-generation tablets also launched in the same month in 2020 and 2019 respectively. But in 2022 history hasn't repeated itself.
The iPad Pro launch date, on the other hand, has moved around more in recent years, with March, April and October all being used to announce a new iteration of Apple's most powerful tablet. Both of these iPads are rumoured to be getting an upgrade in 2022, but most analysts and leakers are pointing to a potential October launch, which means they could be just around the corner. This makes sense, given Apple had enough on its plate with the iPhone 14, Apple Watch Series 8 and AirPods Pro 2.
Rumours suggest the standard iPad could undergo a major redesign to bring it more in line with the rest of the iPad family with a flatter chassis, USB-C charging and the removal of the headphone jack. The iPad Pro could be set for a new power connector, wireless charging and a more powerful chip, although any changes to the screen tech used might have to wait until the 2024 model is launched.
Apple VR headset
If we're talking about potential high-tech Apple product launches we're looking forward to, then Apple's much-discussed VR headset has to be near the top of my list. And why wouldn't you be excited at the thought of such a device? It's believed that three headsets are in the works and the first could arrive in 2023. Early spec rumours suggest the headset will sport super-high resolution OLED screens both inside and out, plus Wi-Fi connectivity, eye and object tracking and gesture controls. Will it blow my mind when it comes to playing games and watching movies? I certainly hope so, although the rumoured £2500 / $3000 / AU$4435 price tag will probably leave me staring at it longingly through the window of my local Apple store.
Which Apple products are you most looking forward to or would you like to see Apple create something in a completely different AV category? Let us know in the comments below!
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