Apple's 2016-17 roadmap: The iPhones are here, but what about the rest of the portfolio?

Apple’s September event has come and gone with no news of the iPads, the neglected MacBook lineup and everything else that Apple makes.

Apple’s September event has come and gone with no news of the iPads, the neglected MacBook lineup and everything else that Apple makes.

Come October, however, and we’re expecting to see quite a bit of news from Apple. Here are all the rumours and reports on Apple’s 2016-17 roadmap.

No more Air

Apples 2016-17 roadmap: The iPhones are here, but what about the rest of the portfolio?

MacBook Air

This rumour has been doing the rounds for a while now and analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, one of the most reliable sources of information on all things Apple, has suggested that Apple will be dropping the ‘Air’ brand completely. This means no more new iPad Airs and MacBook Airs.

iPad updates

Apple iPad line-up

Apple has muddled things up a bit in the iPad space by introducing a 9.7-inch iPad Pro alongside a 12.9-inch iPad Pro. The iPad that came before the Pro, the Air 2 was released in 2014 and the iPad Mini 4 was released in 2015.

Here again Kuo has some input, suggesting that there will be no iPad Air 3 or Mini 5, and that Force Touch will not come this year due to production issues.

There is no other information with regard to Apple’s iPad lineup.

A long-awaited MacBook refresh

Image: 2016 Apple MacBook lineup showing the new Rose Rold variant.

Image: 2016 Apple MacBook lineup showing the new Rose Rold variant.

The rumour mill is particularly active around the MacBook lineup. While all Macs and MacBooks are expected to be updated to Intel’s current Skylake and Kaby Lake platforms, there are a bunch of other changes as well.

For starters, USB Type-C is expected to start replacing USB ports on all devices, particularly the Air.

Some rumours suggest that the MacBook Air will be dumped, that the 12.9-inch iPad Air is the 11-inch MacBook Air replacement and that an upcoming 13-inch MacBook will replace the 13-inch MacBook Air.

Apple Force Touch Keyboard Tech2 640

A patent application filed by Apple indicates a Force Touch keyboard for the MacBook

Other rumours also suggest that the MacBook will get Pencil support (for the TrackPad, not the screen), a Force Touch Keyboard and in-built LTE connectivity.

In the midst of all of this, Apple is conducting a poll to determine if users are using the 3.5mm jack on their MacBook Pros (Nooo!). There are also rumours of a MacBook Pro with an OLED panel.

The refreshed MacBook line and new MacBooks are expected in October.

Bye bye, Netflix!

While nobody is expecting an Apple TV refresh, we have heard rumours that Apple is looking to start its own original programming. This would mean that Apple will compete directly with the likes of Netflix and Amazon.

Apple Siri speaker

Apple has apparently been working on a speaker like Amazon’s Alexa since before anyone heard of Alexa. The speaker, which is being referred to as the Siri speaker, is expected to be a HomeKit-compatible device for controlling your home.

It’s functionality is supposed to be similar to Alexa, with the added ability to control your house via HomeKit. There’s no date on the release of this speaker, but some expect WWDC 2017 to be the venue for its announcement.

Apple Car: What’s going on?

Codenamed ‘Project Titan,’ the Apple Car project was expected to deliver a fully-functioning, autonomous Apple Car by 2021.

Just this month however, Apple reportedly laid off a number of Project Titan employees and hired ex-Tesla employees to help develop an autonomous driving system. Based on these rumours, analysts think that Apple is no longer thinking of building a car and that it will instead build a platform for autonomous vehicles.

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