Shortly before 2013 came to a close, Apple’s chief executive officer (CEO) Tim Cook disclosed that the company was gearing up for a lot of surprises for 2014. Last year, Apple never failed its market with its release of the venerable Mac Pro, Haswell-based MacBook Pros, a Retina display-equipped iPad mini, ultra-thin and light iPad Air, biometric security with TouchID, the 64-bit A7 processor, the new iWork suite, and a lot more. Since the disclosure, several tech analysts have made predictions as to where one of the biggest tech companies in the world is headed this year. Though earnings have declined in over a decade and not all its products have made it to the top, Apple users remain confident that 2014 will see the rise of Apple back on top. Rumors about the release of unprecedented Apple products such as the Retina Macbook Air, Apple TV, 4K Thunderbolt displays and a lot more have been around since the beginning of the year, and though it is somewhat next to unimaginable how Apple is going to pull it off, many believe that the most closely watched tech company will be able to seize 2014. Here is a list of 10 of the boldest Apple forecasts this year:
10. iWatch will finally be released this 2014.
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Following its failure to pull it off last year, analysts believe that Apple is currently employing a team of a hundred industry veterans to make possible the release of iWatch this year. A reliable predictor of Apple products said that iWatch will contain biometric capabilities and will be able to function as a standalone device. Many believe that if not soon, Apple will ship iWatch in the latter half of this year. This wrist-worn gadget is expected to be a game changer for the tech company.
9. iPhone 6 will come out with bigger screen.
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Analysts believe that the next generation handset of Apple will feature a much larger screen, but its display’s exact size remains a bone of contention. Late last year, Tim Cook panned the color reproduction capability of the OLED technology but he left open the possibility of adopting a larger LCD for iPhone 6. According to Kyo, Apple is more likely to have the 4.5-inch end of the range rather than 5.5, considering the company’s “unwavering principle of one-hand use.”
8. iPad Pro will sport a 12.9-inch display.
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The release of iPad Pro has been one of the most controversial Apple predictions for 2014. Analysts believe that iPad Pro will be released as a plus-sized tablet that will feature an ultra-high definition 12.9-inch display. According to rumors, Apple tapped Quanta Computer as its partner as it works on the device, while a Korean company is currently working on the production lines for the tablet’s display. Predictions say that this product will be released in the second half of this year, along with iWatch and iPhone 6.
7. Apple will make strides towards becoming a virtual cable company with the release of iTV.
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Many believe that this 2014, Apple will finally make its way into the television hardware business with the release of iTV, a set top box that will resemble the existing Apple TV but with better content and user experience. Rumor has it that Apple has already begun partnering with content owners such as Viacom, HBO, and ESPN to prepare itself for its virtual cable venture. These speculations were even fueled by the acquisition of Apple of PrimeSense last year.
6. A non-retina iPad Air will replace iPad 2.
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Analysts predict that this year, Apple will find a replacement to the archaic iPad 2 in the form of a non-retina iPad Air. According to them, the tech company will continue to create a non-retina and retina model of the full size iPad this year. Last year, a tech analyst predicted that Apple would refresh the non-retina model but the company made the iPad 2 instead. Believing that Apple would not be able to push the product for another year on the market, analysts expect Apple to release the non-retina iPad Air this year.
5. Apple will produce a Thunderbolt 4K Display.
Photo Source: 9to5mac.com
This 2014, those who keep a close watch on Apple expect the tech company to produce an innovative product that is not just of the right quality but also of the right price—Thunderbolt 4K Display. Analysts believe that soon, Apple will introduce a high-quality Thunderbolt Display that can be pitched to a more extensive market than just the AV professionals. The speculation springs from its failure to launch the Mac Pro in 2013, which would have shown its intention to enter then $5k level market.
4. Apple will launch more interesting Apple stores.
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Fans of apple expect to see more developments in the Apple store this 2014. Analyst Angele Ahrendts believes that this year, Tim Cook is going to put Beacons into its stores to give its market a more radically different experience. Many believe that the tech company is now balancing privacy concerns against functionality as it comes up with better stores that will draw the interest of more Apple users.
3. Apple will have a single computing continuum.
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Analysts say that Apple might have probably been working towards laying the foundations of convergence for years. This move aims to bring into line its products along a single computing continuum, where Apple devices such as iOS and OS X will no longer differentiate themselves for price, mobility, screen size, usage, processing power, or connectivity reasons. Many believe that Apple is already putting in place the pieces that will make this goal achievable this year.
2. Apple will launch new product categories.
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In the second quarter of 2013, the CEO of Apple disclosed that they were planning to augment their market by venturing into new services and making strides towards expanded distribution of new and exciting product categories. Analysts believe that by the fall of this year, the giant tech company will open new product categories by introducing greater products that do not belong to its already existing software, hardware, and app ecosystems businesses.
1. Total number of Apple devices will equal the number of Windows PCS this year.
Photo Source: 9to5mac.com
Analysts predict that sometime this year, Apple devices will be able to match the number of Windows PCs on the planet. This will be buttressed by the millions of people that will continue to vie for iPod and Mac devices, as well as the millions of people who will realize how far more convenient Apple laptops are than Windows PCs.