Apple isn't doomed because it didn't release new Macs and iPads at WWDC

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in Future Apple Hardware
WWDC is winding down for another year, and once again, there was no new hardware. But, Apple's focus on software at WWDC is neither new, nor unexpected -- and doesn't mean that Apple has abandoned anybody.

Tim Cook at June 4 2018 keynote presentation


The latest WWDC is in its last hours, and developers have started winging their way back home with a pile of mandates and improvements by Apple in tow. AppleInsider was there virtually and actually, as you're aware at this point. We're aware of the panic about no new hardware -- but it isn't that big a deal for reasons both historical and current.

We got macOS Mojave...

Mojave finally gets nods back to the old, and practically antique, OS8 and OS9 appearance manager. The new Dark Mode spans the entire operating system, and will be a sight to behold when more developers take advantage of the hooks that Apple has provided.

Dark Mode in macOS Mojave


Other improvements include the Home app and HomeKit support, even better privacy enhancements to Safari which will likely annoy Google and Facebook, desktop Stacks and a lot more quality of life improvements.

Yeah, Apple's left some iron behind again. Because of Metal 2, if your Mac is older than 2012, you're probably out of luck.

We already know that more will get lost next year. In the next desert-named operating system in 2019, it will ditch 32-bit apps and probably OpenGL for good.

The times, they are a changin'. Again.

... and iOS 12

In many ways, iOS 12 feels like wish fulfillment for iPhone users. It brings along a lot of new features designed on making life with the iPhone easier, as well as promises of extra speed and a more smooth experience. Memoji, like Animoji, may not be everybody's cup of tea, but it will sell phones as the TrueDepth camera inches down the iPhone product line.

Between Screen Time, an Apple Music refresh, more security features, App Limits and a lot more, we're hard-pressed to pick out a favorite. So far, they're all pretty good.




All around, iOS 12 seems like a good addition for iPhones and iPads new and old. While we still don't recommend using it on a daily device right now because of crashes and data loss, it is very solid as first betas go. We have been very pleased with what we've seen for performance and features.

The aluminum gorilla in the room

But, there was no hardware. This shouldn't come as a big surprise, though.

In 2017, Apple knew the iPhone X was going to be a big deal. So it looks to us like Apple chose to roll out the rest of the year's hardware earlier so both that new gear including the iMac Pro and HomePod, and the later OLED iPhone X, could shine on the company's own terms.

Minus the single 2017 hardware bonanza, and the reveal of the iPhone a decade ago, WWDC has never been a day of mass hardware roll-outs. Again, minus 2017, it has been a show that has had some hardware, mostly to keep the developers up to date with what they need to support going forward.

Portent of the future

Speaking about telling developers what to expect in the future, Apple previewed the fruits of project "Marzipan" at WWDC. Instead of a straight emulation layer, it turned out to be a framework and API for porting over iPad apps to the Mac.

WWDC 2018 iOS on Mac


While I'm certain that this can be used for good or evil, skillfully or poorly, it isn't a regression. I also believe that it is an early step for migrating at least some of the Mac line to ARM, as the porting friction reduces even further as the technology is finally released to developers in full in 2019.

But, like we said on the AppleInsider Podcast on Friday, this reveal of what is rumored to be called Marzipan is about step two of a twenty step process.

Whether or not this shift is good or bad for any individual user varies. If you're a macOS loyalist, you won't care. If you're first and foremost an Apple Intel hardware fan, this is less positive.

Regardless of when it happens, it will likely start with the Mac mini and MacBook Air, or their equivalents. It will migrate upwards only as Intel falls unacceptably further behind, or when the majority of the high-end user base demands it -- whichever comes first.

There will be some pain-points, like there was the last two times we did this in hardware from 68K to PowerPC and PowerPC to Intel, and once in software from MacOS 9 to MacOS X. Apple handled it well, both with and without Steve Jobs, and there is no reason to believe that they won't do just as well this time around.

Hardware's day is coming

There was a lot of info doled out, and more is yet to come as the new documents are studied, and the betas evolve further. This week was the developer's week, but there are signs that new hardware is coming not just in the short term, but the long term as well.

Apple is very much beholden to its hardware partners, especially Intel -- at least for now. As we have to keep saying, it is (mostly) on Intel why the MacBook Pro doesn't yet support 32GB of RAM, and also why Apple's powerful portable wasn't updated just yet.

Apple bailed on the MacWorld Expo back in the day because it wanted to control the narrative and schedule of releases, without being beholden to release at the shows. WWDC is now no different -- there's no reason to release hardware to a captive and rapt audience assembled for other reasons, when they can do what they want to do, or have to do, on their own schedule.

We know that there are iOS devices coming very soon, because international regulatory agencies have told us so.

Apple has done something uncharacteristic regarding hardware for so-called "Pros," no matter how nebulous that term is -- they've said that the Mac Pro is coming twice now, and now we know that will come in 2019.

Intel continues the plod forward, releasing faster and faster processors even as it misses internal deadlines by years sometimes. Its a reasonable guess that Apple is waiting for Cannon Lake for the MacBook Pro -- and we've already spoken about the rest of the line even before the WWDC began.

Obviously, you're welcome to add to the "churn" from one platform to another based on what you need personally. But, Apple hardware releases are coming soon, and it's never been more clear.

Claiming that Apple is doomed because they didn't roll out new gear at WWDC is disingenuous and ignorant of history.
StrangeDaysDeadguy2322fastasleepAlex1Nlamboaudi4
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 127
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,446member
    Some people here will think differently.....If Steve were here! Because when Steve was here, Macs were constantly updated! LOL!!! /s

    One thing Apple does is it rolls out new hardware when its ready and there are many things that can determine when a particular piece of hardware is ready. Sometimes it's hardware related and sometimes its software related, and I'm sure its a combination of both. Like the article says, this is one of the primary reasons why Apple pulled out of MacWorld's. They were basically forced to come up with something major to release every January (or every Jan/July). Do we really want to go back to the releasing it today and shipping it 2-4 months from now? Then we'll have to listen to the constantly complaining about that. 

    I know we all want the god damn Mac mini to be updated and I bet will be soon along with some other Macs as well (not Mac Pro). You all better buy 5 of these things when Apple releases them too! 
    edited June 8 Deadguy2322mcdavefastasleepAlex1Nwatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 127
    geirnoklebyegeirnoklebye Posts: 37unconfirmed, member
    Not doomed, but it would sure as heck help their customers if they released hardware equivalent to or better than i7 configurations not being able to run Mojave. 
    aylkwoolie
  • Reply 3 of 127
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,008member
    I don't know how actual heavy users of Apple products (not trolls that pretend they do) could not have come away from this WWDC extremely happy and impressed.
    StrangeDaysDeadguy2322pscooter63williamlondonAlex1Nwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 4 of 127
    eightzeroeightzero Posts: 2,013member
    I wonder how the people that bought $14k Series 0 Edition Apple Watches now feel about them being obsolete. But I suppose if you are spending $14k on a watch, you don't really care.

    I guess I don't know what to make of the trend I'm seeing about exciting new Apple stuff coming out on a schedule largely controlled by others. I might get excited about an iPhone upgrade if I could have wireless CarPlay, but that seems to all be in the hands of the CarPlay compatible onboard systems (in my case, Ford Sync, and it aint happening.) New Mac Minis will now wait for  Marzipan to take 18 more of its 20 steps, and that's because Intel something something something. Apple turned displays over to other people, and as far as I can tell, they sorta dorked that up. Similar situation for wifi base stations: no more airports, so I'm just sorta hoping mine dont fail, and that Apple does actually have someone doing security updates for them. I could use a replacement iPad mini, but...

    While I get that Apple has business reasons for the decisions they make, all these decisions seem to be unfavorable to products I am interested in. HomePod? Meh. Not at that price, and the subscription it generally requires for full functionality. $5k iMacs? Nah. MacPro? I don't make movies. ATV? Eh. Mine is fine, collecting dust, in favor of my TTCL Roku set. $3k laptops? A new iMac to get Mojave so I can have Dark Mode? No thanks. But hey, I can still get 50GB of iCloud storage for $.99, so I can share my desktop and documents.

    YMMV. I'm sure I will be told this is all my fault. 
    edited June 8 aylkAlex1N
  • Reply 5 of 127
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 2,883administrator
    eightzero said:
    I wonder how the people that bought $14k Series 0 Edition Apple Watches now feel about them being obsolete. But I suppose if you are spending $14k on a watch, you don't really care.

    I guess I don't know what to make of the trend I'm seeing about exciting new Apple stuff coming out on a schedule largely controlled by others. I might get excited about an iPhone upgrade if I could have wireless CarPlay, but that seems to all be in the hands of the CarPlay compatible onboard systems (in my case, Ford Sync, and it aint happening.) New Mac Minis will now wait for  Marzipan to take 18 more of its 20 steps, and that's because Intel something something something. Apple turned displays over to other people, and as far as I can tell, they sorta dorked that up. Similar situation for wifi base stations: no more airports, so I'm just sorta hoping mine dont fail, and that Apple does actually have someone doing security updates for them. I could use a replacement iPad mini, but...

    While I get that Apple has business reasons for the decisions they make, all these decisions seem to be unfavorable to products I am interested in. HomePod? Meh. Not at that price, and the subscription it generally requires for full functionality. $5k iMacs? Nah. MacPro? I don't make movies. ATV? Eh. Mine is fine, collecting dust, in favor of my TTCL Roku set. $3k laptops? A new iMac to get Mojave so I can have Dark Mode? No thanks. But hey, I can still get 50GB of iCloud storage for $.99, so I can share my desktop and documents.

    YMMV. I'm sure I will be told this is all my fault. 
    Why would you get told that this is your fault?
    Sgt Storms(trooper)Alex1N
  • Reply 6 of 127
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 2,889member
    I wonder if we’ll get new laptops for back to school? Is there something Apple is waiting on from Intel?
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 7 of 127
    nunzynunzy Posts: 423member
     this is completely predictable. The haters will always complain about Apple not doing enough. Wall Street, however, knows that apple will continue to throw off oversized profit. Let the haters hate. Apple is laughing all the way to the bank.
    Deadguy2322watto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 127
    gctwnlgctwnl Posts: 275member
    No Apple isn't doomed. But the lack of a decent update cycle, especially for non all-in-one systems (nothing with Thunderbolt 3 currently in mini or pro) really, really frustrates me. In fact, if my current hardware dies because I refuse to buy Thunderbolt 2 stuff at this stage, I'm doomed and that is thanks to Apple putting me in an impossible position: either do not update and hope the hardware survives or do update and buy obsolete stuff. Nice choice.
    muthuk_vanalingamaylkentropys
  • Reply 9 of 127
    AI, that was the best wrap-up I've read so far.  Congrats.
    Alex1Nwatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 127
    clarker99clarker99 Posts: 71member
    eightzero said:
    I wonder how the people that bought $14k Series 0 Edition Apple Watches now feel about them being obsolete. But I suppose if you are spending $14k on a watch, you don't really care.

    I guess I don't know what to make of the trend I'm seeing about exciting new Apple stuff coming out on a schedule largely controlled by others. I might get excited about an iPhone upgrade if I could have wireless CarPlay, but that seems to all be in the hands of the CarPlay compatible onboard systems (in my case, Ford Sync, and it aint happening.) New Mac Minis will now wait for  Marzipan to take 18 more of its 20 steps, and that's because Intel something something something. Apple turned displays over to other people, and as far as I can tell, they sorta dorked that up. Similar situation for wifi base stations: no more airports, so I'm just sorta hoping mine dont fail, and that Apple does actually have someone doing security updates for them. I could use a replacement iPad mini, but...

    While I get that Apple has business reasons for the decisions they make, all these decisions seem to be unfavorable to products I am interested in. HomePod? Meh. Not at that price, and the subscription it generally requires for full functionality. $5k iMacs? Nah. MacPro? I don't make movies. ATV? Eh. Mine is fine, collecting dust, in favor of my TTCL Roku set. $3k laptops? A new iMac to get Mojave so I can have Dark Mode? No thanks. But hey, I can still get 50GB of iCloud storage for $.99, so I can share my desktop and documents.

    YMMV. I'm sure I will be told this is all my fault. 
    whole lot of whining for a guy who isnt interested in what Apple has to offer. Or maybe you are but cant afford it? Either way, you are not the target market.
    StrangeDaysDeadguy2322williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 127
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 2,326member
    nunzy said:
     this is completely predictable. The haters will always complain about Apple not doing enough. Wall Street, however, knows that apple will continue to throw off oversized profit. Let the haters hate. Apple is laughing all the way to the bank.
    But users want products. Intel isn't the reason Apple hasn't updated. Other manufacturers have put out better updated machines (and at far better prices).

    Are you saying that users should still be paying the high prices of the current (now outdated) line and be happy about it?

    Wanting an update doesn't make them haters.
    coolfactormuthuk_vanalingamkirkgraynunzyrogifan_newwoolieentropysAlex1NThe_Martini_Cat
  • Reply 12 of 127
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,008member
    nunzy said:
     this is completely predictable. The haters will always complain about Apple not doing enough. Wall Street, however, knows that apple will continue to throw off oversized profit. Let the haters hate. Apple is laughing all the way to the bank.
    Holy shit. I don't see how you can't be a spam bot. You literally make the exact same post in every SINGLE thread (about Apple raking in the profits). We get it. I don't see why you need to point this out over and over again no matter what the subject matter. 
    nunzypscooter63majorslfastasleepbigpicsbigpicsAlex1N
  • Reply 13 of 127
    FolioFolio Posts: 284member
    I hope this WWDC, and Apple’s rollout to extend the life of its iPhones going all way back to 2013 5s iPhone, dampens the media message of expensive, pricey, etc. Something that AI is guilty of too. Life cycle cost of iPhone is relatively cheap. Guess who has a higher profit margin, Apple or McDonald’s? That’s right, selling burgers gives you 24 percent margin these days. Versus 22 percent for Apple.
    Deadguy2322The_Martini_Cat
  • Reply 14 of 127
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 2,883administrator
    Folio said:
    I hope this WWDC, and Apple’s rollout to extend the life of its iPhones going all way back to 2013 5s iPhone, dampens the media message of expensive, pricey, etc. Something that AI is guilty of too. Life cycle cost of iPhone is relatively cheap. Guess who has a higher profit margin, Apple or McDonald’s? That’s right, selling burgers gives you 24 percent margin these days. Versus 22 percent for Apple.
    Apple's gross margin is 38 percent. 

    I agree with you that the life cycle cost is relatively cheap. However, under every measure, the iPhone X is an expensive phone out the door.
    edited June 8 Deadguy2322muthuk_vanalingamIreneWentropysfastasleepAlex1N
  • Reply 15 of 127
    tzeshantzeshan Posts: 1,678member
    Despite criticizing Apple quality problem, I am impressed with the amount of quality new features announced in WWDC. 
  • Reply 16 of 127
    sfolaxsfolax Posts: 22member
    Since Apple makes most of its money from the iPhone and iPad it doesn't matter what they do to the Mac lineups.
  • Reply 17 of 127
    croprcropr Posts: 794member
    slurpy said:
    I don't know how actual heavy users of Apple products (not trolls that pretend they do) could not have come away from this WWDC extremely happy and impressed.
    As owner of an app development I was not disappointed, but also not impressed.   There was nothing new announced that made me say: "wow that is cool".  It was a mixed bag:
    • performance improvements in iOS are nice
    • running iOS apps on a Mac is much more a marketing story than a actual and practical solution. The moment you want to develop a high quality Mac app, making using of the features of a Mac, you will need more than just repackaging the iOS app
    • Siri shortcuts is a natural evolution which I like but at the same time the announcement masked the fact Apple has been unable to remedy the existing shortcomings of Siri.   The gap with Google and Amazon voice assistants will not be closed in the short term
    • Nothing was announced about the evolution of Swift.  Given that WWDC is targeted at developers, this is worrying.
    muthuk_vanalingamwilliamlondoncgWerks
  • Reply 18 of 127
    coolfactorcoolfactor Posts: 1,247member
    It would have been nice if they teased about the next generation Mac Pro, but maybe they are also afraid of the backlash for pre-announcing and then the lo-o-o-ngggg wait until release.

    It would also be nice if they could just incrementally update models like the Mac mini. Even a minor refresh would be nicer than stagnation for 4 years...
    edited June 8 razorpitAlex1N
  • Reply 19 of 127
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 4,929member
    cropr said:
    slurpy said:
    I don't know how actual heavy users of Apple products (not trolls that pretend they do) could not have come away from this WWDC extremely happy and impressed.
    As owner of an app development I was not disappointed, but also not impressed.   There was nothing new announced that made me say: "wow that is cool".  It was a mixed bag:
    • performance improvements in iOS are nice
    • running iOS apps on a Mac is much more a marketing story than a actual and practical solution. The moment you want to develop a high quality Mac app, making using of the features of a Mac, you will need more than just repackaging the iOS app
    • Siri shortcuts is a natural evolution which I like but at the same time the announcement masked the fact Apple has been unable to remedy the existing shortcomings of Siri.   The gap with Google and Amazon voice assistants will not be closed in the short term
    • Nothing was announced about the evolution of Swift.  Given that WWDC is targeted at developers, this is worrying.
    How can you be a developer but still not understand Marzipan isn’t about “running iOS apps on Mac” and is instead about a cross platform UI framework to allow greater code sharing between platforms to reduce barriers of entry...that anything targeting the Mac will still be a native Mac app, not an iOS app running on Mac, and as such will likely require some tweaking. But the point is it’s going to be easier enough that it will hopefully be worth the effort to those interested in targeting both. And considering it was just a sneak-peak and won't even be announced until next year, it's preposterous for you to already claim "It's just marketing!"

    How can you be a developer but not understand the keynote covers only the biggest changes to the platforms and doesn't go into detail, but that the sessions do? Swift evolution was covered on Tuesday morning in a session mysteriously called "What's New in Swift". You can watch it here:

    https://developer.apple.com/videos/play/wwdc2018/401/
    edited June 8 Deadguy2322auxioSolifastasleepPickUrPoisonwilliamlondonAlex1N
  • Reply 20 of 127
    FolioFolio Posts: 284member
    And McDonald gross margin? 48 percent. Yet seldom hear complaints about Big Mac prices. Yes, the flagship iPhone may pinch the purse but there’s loads of cheaper models. What’s the five year cost for the 5s? Almost like a Happy Meal, so to speak.
    StrangeDaysSoliThe_Martini_Cat
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