MG Siegler, a well-known (and certainly well-connected) TechCrunch columnist, blogger, Google Ventures partner and Apple pundit, has gotten us pretty excited by tweeting a month ago that a new Apple TV hardware might be on tap for tomorrow’s iPad event.
Although the $99 set-top box is ripe for refresh – the current third-generation 1080p model was introduced 593 days ago – we have literally seen no components leaking out of Apple’s supply chain to suggest an imminent update, which had prompted us to take the columnist’s claim with a few pinches of salt.
Changing his tune, he now claims a major hardware revamp “has been delayed a bit,” which however doesn’t mean we won’t see an Apple TV update tomorrow…
“I guess those excited about a software refresh in a week are gonna be *really* excited when new Apple TV hardware is unveiled next month,” reads Siegler’s September 21 tweet.
This past Saturday, “pouring a small amount of water” on his original tweet, he said:
While I still haven’t heard anything concrete, the most recent whispers I have heard is that the Apple TV project has been delayed a bit.
Originally, I had heard this new-style Apple TV (not an actual television, by the way) was slated for sometime around this November.
Nonetheless, Siegler goes on to speculate we still might see a minor Apple TV refresh at the iPad event tomorrow, basically “an updated unit with a spec bump or something”.
“But the thing to be more excited about, the device with some sort of newfangled control system, doesn’t seem like it’s ready just yet,” he cautioned.
The Wall Street Journal (and pretty much everyone else) is expecting a thinner and lighter iPad 5 and a Retina iPad mini tomorrow. The newspaper-owned technology blog, AllThingsD, is also betting on a Haswell-based update to the MacBook Pro lineup which, however, could as well be communicated through a press release and a silent website update (like the recent iMac update).
If you talk to the reliable analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, the new iPads will share Apple’s improved eight-megapixel iSight camera and will not incorporate the Touch ID sensor. The iPad 5 should run Apple’s in-house designed A7X chip, with the A7 variant driving the Retina iPad mini, Kuo said.
A new Apple-made, Surface-like iPad keyboard cover could be in the cards, too.
Last but not least, Apple should share some software related developments at the event, including announcing OS X Mavericks and iOS 7.1 availability and showing off iOS 7-style updates to its iLife and iWork creativity and productivity suite, respectively.
Yesterday, Apple silently issued a new OS X Mavericks Gold Master (build 13A603), less than three weeks following the original Gold Master seed (build 13A598).
Apple’s event kicks off at 10am PST tomorrow.
To get you up to speed, we have a roundup of what to expect from the show.