In the latest edition of his Power On newsletter (opens in new tab), the well connected Apple reporter repeated his view that “if there’s any hardware at WWDC, it will likely be on the Mac side.” Apple, he says, has been “aiming to launch the next MacBook Air with M2 chips at the conference.”
On the specific ETA of the 2022 MacBook Air, Gurman’s view has shifted over time. Back in February, he was suggesting it would make a “nice little holiday seller," but he was sounding more bullish on an earlier WWDC reveal last month. And he wasn’t alone in this prediction, either.
Now it sounds like he’s wobbling a little again, due to the words we hoped to never have to type again: Covid-19 related supply chain problems.
“The recent supply chain crunch due to Covid-related closures in China has complicated that," Gurman wrote. “But developers say that Apple employees are increasingly using next-generation MacBook Airs with their apps. That's a sign that the new Mac is close.”
Along with the possible inclusion of the Apple M2 chip, rumors point to slimmed down bezels, a playful set of colors, more ports and the return of MagSafe. It may or may not come with a notch, but apparently the screen won’t get upgraded to mini-LED tech.
What about VR/AR?
All very exciting, but yesterday a series of trademarks seemed to indicate that Apple was planning on unveiling something called RealityOS at WWDC. Notably, references to RealityOS have started cropping up in iOS and are almost certainly related to Apple’s rumored VR/AR headset.
So what does Gurman think about that?
“Though Apple's upcoming mixed-reality headset is full steam ahead — underscored by the recent demonstration of the device to the company's board — I'd be wary of expecting a full-blown presentation for developers and consumers next week,” he wrote.
Of course, there are a few points between “absent” and “full-blown presentation”, so maybe we’ll see a teaser and a possible launch window? It’s a developer’s conference after all, so perhaps Apple will just use the opportunity to focus developer minds on ways to make Apple VR/HR software as transformative as iPhone apps proved to be a decade ago.