2007: The year in preview

When will it happen?

There are many items we all know (or, at least, we think we know) are coming down the pike. The big question is, when are they coming? So we asked our experts to guess the timing for four forthcoming hardware and software products.

Leopard

  • Breen: April
  • Engst: June
  • Gruber: June
  • Ihnatko: May, so it can help boost sales to the education market.
  • Moltz: After screen shots of all the super-cool features have already been leaked on the Internet, ruining a good time for everyone.
  • iTV

  • Breen: March
  • Engst: February
  • Gruber: February. They’ll start taking orders after the Expo keynote, though.
  • Ihnatko: It’s just waiting for the 802.11n WiFi standard to settle down. I’m going to guess May.
  • Moltz: When you kids finish your homework and not a minute before! I don’t care when your show starts!
  • An eight-core Mac

  • Breen: January
  • Engst: If a Mac Pro does come out with eight cores, I’d expect it in October, presumably after Leopard and some applications that provide support for all those cores in a real way come out.
  • Gruber: January
  • Ihnatko: It’s a toss-up but I think WWDC is a safe bet.
  • Moltz: Never! Four cores should be enough for anyone. In my day, we only had one core and we had to crank-start... Hey, where are you going? Come back here!
  • Widescreen iPod

  • Breen: Spring
  • Engst: September, in time for the holiday buying season.
  • Gruber: September
  • Ihnatko: Late in the year (October, say) if at all. I still haven’t seen evidence that Apple’s actually buying parts or readying manufacturing. And iTV has taken a lot of the steam out of the “any day now” widescreen iPod rumors. Without iTV, one has to wonder why Apple has moved into movies so aggressively if not to support an iPod that makes video a more sumptuous and indulgent experience. With iTV, online movies and TV shows have someplace to go; maybe Apple will just steer iPod users to those paperback-sized screens that you slide your iPod into for longer battery life and a bigger display.
  • Moltz: Five minutes after the next time Steve Jobs says “Oh, there’s just one more thing...”
  • Last year’s scorecard

    Anyone can predict what will happen in the year ahead. But it takes a truly courageous person to dredge up last year’s predictions to see whether those came to pass—or, more likely, fell spectacularly short. In the February 2006 issue of Macworld , we asked Christopher Breen, Adam Engst, and senior editor Dan Frakes to give us their best guesses on what 2006 held in store. Here’s how their predictive powers panned out.

    Christopher Breen

  • Intel-based PowerBook: Right processor, wrong product name. But we figure the Intel-based MacBook Pro is close enough. Correct.
  • Running Windows on a Mac without Apple’s help: Well, Apple did provide some help in the form of Boot Camp, though our preference at this point for cross-platform computing is Parallels Desktop for Mac. Correct.
  • First Intel Mac in the first quarter of 2006: With Macworld Expo in January, it didn’t take too long for this prediction to come true. Correct.
  • Final tally: 3 out of 3

    Adam C. Engst

  • Tablet Mac: As slick as the MacBook is, it’s still a laptop and not a tablet computer. Incorrect.
  • Replacement for iTunes: With iTunes 7 released in September, Apple’s jukebox software is still going strong. Incorrect.
  • New Finder that relies on Spotlight: Mac OS X remained unchanged in ’06. Incorrect.
  • Final tally: 0 out of 3

    Dan Frakes

  • Apple media center: It didn’t ship in 2006, but the product code-named iTV promises to let you control movies, music, and other multimedia from your Mac on your TV. Correct.
  • Office suite from Apple: True, iWork got an update, but refurbished versions of Keynote and Pages do not a Microsoft Office competitor make. Incorrect.
  • Intel processor debuts in a laptop or Mac mini first: It was the laptop. (And the iMac, to be completely accurate.) But we’ll give it to him. Correct.
  • Final tally: 2 out of 3

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