Call us impatient, but documenting the life and times of Apple and its various product lines can sometimes be an exercise in frustration. Whether it’s the mythical white iPhone 4 or an updated version of iWork for Mac, we’re often left tapping our fingers — and here’s a look at a some of the products we’ve been waiting for the longest.
It’s called The Waiting Game: Sitting through endless internet rumors about cool new stuff that Apple may or may not be releasing in the near (or far) future, building them up so much in our minds that Cupertino will probably never be able to achieve anything close to what we can dream of. But that doesn’t mean that the company isn’t hard at work on these things — including five of them which we’ve collected here.
White iPhone 4
Yeah, we’re sick of hearing about it, too — first announced alongside the black model last June, the white iPhone 4 has suffered from multiple delays, presumably due to issues with the white paint used in the manufacturing process. Apparently these problems have now been ironed out, with no less than Apple executive Phil Schiller claiming that the elusive handset will finally debut “this spring.” Hey, according to our calendar, we’re already a month into spring — so where’s that white iPhone 4? But perhaps the real question should be: Who in their right mind would buy a white iPhone 4 at this late stage when an iPhone 5 is likely to appear sometime between June and September? Although a 64GB model might be mighty tempting…
iWork ’10/’11 (’12?)
Very little has been written about a refresh to the Mac version of iWork, Apple’s answer to Microsoft Office which features Pages (word processor), Numbers (spreadsheet) and Keynote (presentation). Last released as iWork ’09 when it debuted in January of that year, the productivity suite is so long in the tooth that Apple now calls it simply “iWork,” perhaps in an attempt to look less dated. Most of us expected the separate iWork components to debut with the Mac App Store in January — and there were plenty of leaks confirming it was possible — but the old version remains the only one available. Will the $79 suite continue to be sold in a boxed version if and when an updated version debuts this year, or is it destined strictly for the Mac App Store? Time will tell.
Sandy Bridge iMacs
While there’s nothing technically wrong with the current iMac lineup, desktop Mac users have been sitting on the sidelines the last few months watching MacBook Pro users have all the fun with Intel’s latest Sandy Bridge quad-core processors. We’ve heard rumors that iMac supplies have tightened in recent days, usually a sign that a refresh could be near, potentially by early May. So what can we expect? Our crystal ball says Sandy Bridge processors for sure, and that swanky new Thunderbolt port is also a shoo-in. MacBook Pro users, prepare to eat our dust!
“Bag of hurt,” you say? That may be how Apple CEO Steve Jobs
famously referred to the labyrinthine licensing issues attached to the high-definition video format known as Blu-ray, which fought a brief battle against the more open HD-DVD
— only to find out that consumers were mostly happy with DVD
anyway. (Blame that one on the studios for telling us DVD
was “high definition” in the first place.) Despite being a board member of the Blu-ray Disc Association since 2005
, the company has sidestepped the format completely in favor of iTunes purchases and rentals — in fact, the only Apple software to even acknowledge Blu-ray as a format is Compressor, part of the Final Cut Studio suite. How about Blu-ray support in the Finder, and as part of a forthcoming DVD
Studio Pro update? Apple, don’t make us open up our own bag of hurt on you… (just kidding!)
Free (or Improved) MobileMe
Free at last, free at last! Thank God Almighty, MobileMe is free at last! Well, not quite — but we’re getting there. No less than Apple CEO Steve Jobs himself has told an inquiring emailer that MobileMe would get “a lot better” this year, and who are we to doubt the man? All eyes have been on the company’s new data center in North Carolina, which is likely to be a key piece of the puzzle in getting a refreshed MobileMe sometime between now and… well, the distant future. So what are we anxiously waiting for? Besides the potentially free price tag (at least maybe for Mac and iOS users), we’re dying to see how Apple will respond to Amazon’s recent cloud-based music locker, likely making it one better by hosting video content as well. There’s also talk of new social interaction features, including always knowing where your pals are with the Find My Friends feature — because some people are impossible to keep track of with a phone call or text message, ya know?